Obrázky na stránke

appears that the enthusiasm of the inhabitants was prodigious, and that the women fought from the houses, raining down boiling oil on the assailants." Dowden, ii. 342, 343.

Shelley (from the Baths of San Giuliano) to Mrs. Shelley, September 1, 1820: “At Naples the constitutional party have declared to the Austrian minister that, if the Emperor should make war upon them, their first action would be to put to death all the members of the royal family — a necessary and most just measure, when the forces of the combatants, as well as the merits of their respective causes, are so unequal." Dowden, ii. 343.

[The Ode was written between August 17 and 25, according to the entry in Mrs. Shelley's Journal.]

Shelley (from Pisa) to Ollier, February 16, 1821 : “I send you three poems — Ode to Naples, a sonnet and Epipsychidion.Shelley Memorials, p. 152.

Medwin, Life, ii. 28 : “Shelley felt deeply the resubjugation of Naples, and used to inveigh against Moore's lines, beginning "Yes, down to the dust with them, slaves as they are,' suggested by a failure which he deemed ignominious; and Shelley said that they were written in a spirit unworthy of himself and an Irishman, and whether merited or not were cruel and Rossetti revises the designation of the divisions of

ungenerous.” Text: Shelley's Notes, Introductory : “ The author has

connected many recollections of his visit to Pompeii and Baiæ with the enthusiasm excited by the intelligence of the proclamation of a Constitutional Government at Naples. This has given a tinge of picturesque and descriptive imagery to the introductory Epodes which depicture these scenes, and some of the majestic feelings permanently connected with the scene of the animating event.

1 Pompeii. 39 Homer and Virgil. 104 Ææa, the island of Circe. 112 The viper was the armorial device of the Vis

conti, tyrants of Milan.”

the Ode. 317 Liberty, Text : i. 4 zone 1824, 18391,2. 318 Summer and Winter, Text : 11 do die 1829. Transcript,

in Mrs. Shelley's hand, Frederickson. 319 The Tower of Famine, Text : 7 For || With 1829. Trans

script, in Mrs. Shelley's hand, Frederickson. 320 An Allegory, Text : ii. 1 passed 18391,2. 320 The World's Wanderers. Forman conjectures that the

poem lacks a stanza.
321 Sonnet. Signed in The Literary Pocket-Book.
TEXT: 1 dead 1824, 18391,2.

5 anticipation 1824, 18391,2.
7 mayest 18391, 2, mayst Rossetti.
8 that which 18391,2.
wouidst 18392, Rossetti, Forman.

MSS. Harvard, Ollier.
The Harvard MS. followed by Hunt and Mrs.

Shelley seems earlier than the Ollier MS. fol

lowed by later editors. 322 Lines to a Reviewer. Signed in The Literary Pocket-Book. TEXT: 2 an 1824.

3 where 1824, 18391,2, Rossetti. 323 Time Long Past. From the Stacey MS. One of the

three poems written by Shelley in the copy of Hunt's Literary Pocket-Book given by him to Miss Stacey,

December 29, 1820. 324 Buona Notte, Medwin, Life, ii. 178, 179: “I often

asked Shelley if he had never attempted to write, like Matthias, in Italian, and he showed me a sort of serenade which I give as a curiosity, - but proving that he had not made a profound study of the language, which, like Spanish, he had acquired without a grammar,

trusting to his fine ear and memory, rather than to rules.” [Printed by Medwin in The

Angler in Wales, i. 277, without comment.] Text: i. 2 sarà || sia 1834, 1847.

4 buona || bene 1834. ji. 1 Come || Quanto 1834.

324 Good-night. Signed in The Literary Pocket-Book,

1822. MSS. Harvard, Stacey. This is one of the three poems written by Shelley in The Literary PocketBook given to Miss Stacey, December 29, 1820. Rossetti follows that MS. The Stacey version is poetically inferior to that of Hunt, Mrs. Shelley, and the Harvard MS., and even if it be a later copy it may not represent the poet's final choice. Shelley may have sent the lines to Hunt, when first written, and they may have remained in his hands until 1822 ; or he may have sent them after December 29, 1820, – a supposition which corresponds better with Hunt's letters, - and in this case the copy represents his decision, preferring one to the other version ; at all events, he left Hunt's copy uncorrected. The Harvard MS. cancellation in iïi. 1, noted in the footnote, is a slight indication that this is really the later form, since a line beginning the same as that of the Stacey MS. was in the writer's mind, and was rejected. Where the matter is so uncertain, it seems best to print the better poem, especially as it is the one that has been accepted for fifty years.


Mrs. Shelley's Note, 18391, iv. 149–154 : “My task becomes inexpressibly painful as the year draws near that which sealed our earthly fate ; and each poem and each event it records, has a real or mysterious connection with the fatal catastrophe. I feel that I am incapable of putting on paper the history of those times. The heart of the man, abhorred of the poet,

"Who could peep and botanize upon his mother's grave,' does not appear to me less inexplicably framed than that of one who can dissect and probe past woes, and repeat to the public ear the groans drawn from them in the throes of their agony.

“ The year 1821 was spent in Pisa, or at the baths of San Giuliano. We were not, as our wont had been, alone

friends had gathered round us. Nearly all are dead ; and when memory recurs to the past, she wanders


tombs : the genius with all his blighting errors and mighty powers ; the companion of Shelley's ocean-wanderings, and the sharer of his fate, than whom no man ever existed more gentle, generous, and fearless; and others, who found in Shelley's society, and in his great knowledge and warm sympathy, delight, instruction and solace, have joined him beyond the grave. A few survive who have felt life a desert since he left it. What misfortune can equal death? Change can convert every other into a blessing, or heal its sting - death alone has no cure ; it shakes the foundations of the earth on which we tread, it destroys its beauty, it casts down our shelter, it exposes us bare to desolation ; when those we love have passed into eternity,‘life is the desert and the solitude,' in which we are forced to linger but never find comfort


“Shelley's favorite taste was boating ; when living near the Thames, or by the lake of Geneva, much of his life was spent on the water. On the shore of every lake, or stream, or sea, near which he dwelt, he had a boat mgored. He had latterly enjoyed this pleasure again. There are no pleasureboats on the Arno, and the shallowness of its waters, except in winter time, when the stream is too turbid and impetuous for boating, rendered it difficult to get any skiff light enough to float. Shelley, however, overcame the difficulty; he, together with a friend, contrived a boat such as the huntsmen carry about with them in the Maremma, to cross the sluggish but deep streams that intersect the forests, a boat of laths and pitched canvas ; it held three persons, and he was often seen on the Arno in it, to the horror of the Italians, who remonstrated on the danger, and could not understand how any one could take pleasure in an exercise that risked life. Ma va per la vita !' they exclaimed. I little thought how true their words would prove. He once ventured with a friend [Williams], on the glassy sea of a calm day, down the Arno and round the coast, to Leghorn, which by keeping close in shore was very practicable. They returned to Pisa by the canal, when, missing the direct cut, they got entangled among weeds, and the boat upset ; a wetting was all the harm done except that the intense cold of his drenched clothes made Shelley faint. Once I went down with him to the mouth of the Arno, where the stream, then high and swift, met the tideless sea and disturbed its sluggish waters ; it was a waste and dreary scene; the desert sand stretched into a point surrounded by waves that broke idly though perpetually around ; it was a scene very similar to Lido, of which he had said,

“I love all waste
And solitary places, where we taste
The pleasure of believing what we see
Is boundless, as we wish our souls to be;
And such was this wide ocean, and this shore
More barren than its billows.'

“Our little boat was of greater use, unaccompanied by any danger, when we removed to the baths. Some friends [the Williamses] lived at the village of Pugnano, four miles off, and we went to and fro to see them, in our boat, by the canal, which, fed by the Serchio, was, though an artificial, a full and picturesque stream, making its way under verdant banks, sheltered by trees that dipped their boughs into the murmuring waters. By day, multitudes of ephemera darted to and fro on the surface ; at night, the fireflies came out among the shrubs on the banks ; the cicale at noonday kept up their hum ; the aziola cooed in the quiet evening. It was a pleasant summer, bright in all but Shelley's health and inconstant spirits ; yet he enjoyed himself greatly, and became more and more attached to the part of the country where chance appeared to cast us. Sometimes he projected taking a farm, situated on the height of one of the near hills, surrounded by chestnut and pine woods, and overlooking a wide extent of country ; or of settling still further in the maritime Apennines, at Massa. Several of his slighter and unfinished poems were inspired by these scenes, and by the companions around us. It is the nature of that poetry, however, which overflows from the soul, oftener to express sorrow and regret than joy ; for it is when oppressed by the

« PredošláPokračovať »