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THE

CONFESSIONS OF LORD BYRON

CHAPTER I

BYRON'S REFLECTIONS ON HIMSELF

(1) The Comparison of himself to Rousseau I HAVE been thinking over the other day on the various comparisons, good or evil

, which I have seen published of myself in different journals English and foreign. This was suggested to me by accidentally turning over a foreign one lately; for I have made it à rule latterly never to search for anything of the kind, but not to avoid the perusal if presented by chance.

. To begin then-I have_seen myself compared personally or poetically, in English, French, German (as interpreted to me), Italian and Portuguese, within these nine years, to Rousseau-Goëthe-Young (the famous eighteenth-century writer (1681-1765), who composed the gloomy and theatrical poem, NightThoughts and the well-known tragedies, Busiris and The Revenge]Aretino [Pietro Aretine (1492-1556), famous or infamous, as the author of sixteen sonnets -Carew calls them “the divine lectures of love's great

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master, Aretine ”—which he composed to accompany some naturalistic “Postures” designed by Julio Romano, and engraved by Marc Antonio Raimondi]

— Timon of Athens—“An Alabaster Vase lighted up within ” — Satan— Shakespeare - BuonaparteTiberius [the Tiberius of Capreæ whose monstrous vices are described in detail by Suetonius and mentioned summarily by Tacitus in the Annals, Book VI. cap. i.] -- Aeschylus -- Sophocles — Euripides Harlequin-The Clown-Sternhold and Hopkins (cf. Chapter VI. Rogers, 1814, Sept. 15]-to the Phantasmagoria—to Henry the 8th [in the supposed inconstancy of his conjugal affections]to Chenies—to Mirabeau --to young R. Dallas (the Schoolboy)—to Michael Angelo--to Raphael—to a petit maître-to Diogenes [in imagined surliness and misanthropy]-to Childe Harold—to Lara—to the Count in Beppo-to Milton —to Pope—to Dryden (perhaps in the wide range of his poetic talent]—to Burns—to Savage [perhaps in respect of the affectional relations in which the poet had stood to his mother]—to Chatterton [in the precocity of his genius)—to “oft have I heard of thee my Lord Biron ” in Shakespeare—to Churchill the poet [Charles Churchill, a free-living clergyman and a friend of John Wilkes, wrote the well-known satire, “The Rosciad,” and along with Wilkes and Sir Francis Dashwood belonged to the society of the “Monks of Medmenham Abbey.” He died in 1764, at the early age of thirty-three. In the likening of Byron to Churchill, here alluded to, a twofold resemblance is probably insinuated, of Byron as the author of a popular satire, (English Bards, etc.), and also as the companion of sham “monks"-the

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