The Pilgrim of Eternity: Byron--A Conflict


"I have been asked by some if his appearance and manner did not convey the idea of a fiend incarnate."--DR. KENNEDY.


BYRON has been the occasion of more squabbling than any other figure in our literary history. To write of him seems to be, in some inevitable measure, to scold. Indeed, from the first, to have known him or his affairs has been to fall into some quarrel or another. When he was an infant his parents separated, and, upon his father's request that he should still see something of his child, the young Byron was taken to him for a night, and bawled so effectively that his disillusioned sire surrendered all his claims forthwith. At his infant school he fought other little boys, as was natural, and fell out with his masters and his nurse. At the age of eight he was taken to the theatre, and from his seat denounced the actor of Petruchio for bullying Katharine, crying out at a famous passage, "But I say it is the moon, sir." Throughout his boyhood he lived in a state of constant and often violent conflict with his mother, who was of a nature to provoke a far less spirited son to desperation. At Harrow he was on more than one occasion the centre if not the cause of a school crisis, and at Cambridge he set his tradesmen and his lawyer by the ears, and scandalised the high table of his college by telling them that his pugilistic friend, Gentleman Jackson, could teach them manners. These incidents are amusing at a distance, but they had fire enough in them and some venom at the time. And they were the prelude to a . . .

Additional information

Publisher: Place of publication:
  • London
Publication year:
  • 1925


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