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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 1.djvu/425

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383
ENGLISH BARDS, AND SCOTCH REVIEWERS.

personal: those who do not, may one day be convinced. Since the publication of this thing, my name has not been concealed; I have been mostly in London, ready to answer for my transgressions, and in daily expectation of sundry cartels; but, alas! "the age of chivalry is over," or, in the vulgar tongue, there is no spirit now-a-days.

There is a youth ycleped Hewson Clarke (subaudi esquire), a sizer of Emanuel College, and, I believe, a denizen of Berwick-upon-Tweed, whom I have introduced in these pages to much better company than he has been accustomed to meet; he is, notwithstanding, a very sad dog, and for no reason that I can discover, except a personal quarrel with a bear, kept by me at Cambridge to sit for a fellowship, and whom the jealousy of his Trinity contemporaries prevented from success, has been abusing me, and, what is worse, the defenceless innocent above mentioned, in the Satirist for one year and some months. I am utterly unconscious of having given him any provocation; indeed, I am guiltless of having heard his name, till coupled with the Satirist. He has therefore no reason to complain, and I dare say that, like Sir Fretful Plagiary, he is rather pleased than otherwise. I have now mentioned all who have done me the honour to notice me and mine, that is, my bear and my book, except the editor of the Satirist, who, it seems, is a gentleman—God wot! I wish he could impart a little of his gentility to his subordinate scribblers. I hear that Mr. Jerningham[1] is about to take up the cudgels for his Mæcenas, Lord Carlisle.

  1. [Edward Jerningham (1727-1812), third son of Sir George Jerningham, Bart., was an indefatigable versifier. Between the publication of his first poem, The Nunnery, in 1766, and his last, The Old Bard's Farewell, in 1812, he sent to the press no less than thirty separate compositions. As a contributor to the British Album, Gifford handled him roughly in the Baviad (lines 21, 22); and Mathias, in a note to Pursuits of Literature, brackets him with Payne Knight as "ecrivain du commun et poëte vulgaire." He was a dandy with a literary turn, who throughout a long life knew every one who was worth knowing. Some of his letters have recently been published (see Jerningham Letters, two vols., 1896).]