The Works of George Byron: With His Letters and Journals, and His Life, Volume 17

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Page 17 - And, after all what is a lie ? 'Tis but The truth in masquerade, and I defy Historians, heroes, lawyers, priests, to put A fact without some leaven of a lie. The very shadow of true truth would shut Up annals, revelations, poesy, And prophecy — except it should be dated Some years before the incidents related. Praised be all liars and all lies! Who now Can tax my mild Muse with misanthropy ? She rings the world's 'Te Deum', and her brow Blushes for those who will not: — but to sigh Is idle.
Page 98 - Amidst the court a Gothic fountain play'd, Symmetrical, but deck'd with carvings quaint — Strange faces, like to men in masquerade, And here perhaps a monster, there a saint: The spring gush'd through grim mouths of granite made, And sparkled into basins, where it spent Its little torrent in a thousand bubbles, Like man's vain glory, and his vainer troubles.
Page 12 - I know that entertainments of this nature are apt to raise dark and dismal thoughts in timorous minds, and gloomy imaginations; but for my own part, though I am always serious, I do not know what it is to be melancholy...
Page 3 - Some truths there are so near and obvious to the mind that a man need only open his eyes to see them. Such I take this important one to be, viz., that all the choir of heaven and furniture of the earth, in a word all those bodies which compose the mighty frame of the world, have not any subsistence without a mind...
Page 35 - What Juan saw and underwent shall be My topic, with of course the due restriction Which is required by proper courtesy : And recollect the work is only fiction ; And that I sing of neither mine nor me, Though every scribe, in some slight turn of diction, Will hint allusions never meant.
Page 151 - Tis strange — but true ; for Truth is always strange, Stranger than Fiction : if it could be told, How much would novels gain by the exchange ! How differently the world would men behold ! How oft would vice and virtue places change ! The new world would be nothing to the old, If some Columbus of the moral seas Would show mankind their soul's Antipodes.
Page 96 - Spared by some chance when all beside was spoil'd : She made the earth below seem holy ground. This may be superstition, weak or wild, But even the faintest relics of a shrine Of any worship wake some thoughts divine.
Page 24 - Has taken for a swan rogue Southey's gander. John Keats, who was kill'd off by one critique, Just as he really promised something great, If not intelligible, without Greek Contrived to talk about the gods of late Much as they might have been supposed to speak. Poor fellow ! His was an untoward fate ; 'Tis strange the mind, that very fiery particle, Should let itself be snuff'd out by an article.
Page 54 - But now I'm going to be immoral ; now I mean to show things really as they are, Not as they ought to be : for I avow. That till we see what's what in fact, we're far From much improvement with that virtuous plough Which skims the surface, leaving scarce a scar Upon the black loam long manured by Vice, Only to keep its corn at the old price.
Page 23 - Alliance" of dunces down at zero, Now that the Lion's fall'n, may rise again : But I will fall at least as fell my hero ; Nor reign at all, or as a monarch reign ; Or to some lonely isle of gaolers go, With turncoat Southey for my turnkey Lowe.

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