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March 5 1812 Byron to Lord Holland

On March 5, 1812, Lord Byron encloses of copy of his newly published Childe Harold's Pilgrimage with the following letter:
St. James’s-street, March 5, 1812
My Lord,
May I request your Lordship to accept a copy of the thing which accompanies this note? You have already so fully proved the truth of the first line of Pope’s couplet,
‘Forgiveness to the injured doth belong,’
that I long for an opportunity to give the lie to the verse that follows. If I were not perfectly convinced that any thing I may have formerly uttered in the boyish rashness of my misplaced resentment had made as little impression as it deserved to make, I should hardly have the confidence—perhaps your Lordship may give it a stronger and more appropriate appellation—to send you a quarto of the same scribbler. But your Lordship, I am sorry to observe today, is troubled with the gout: if my book can produce a laugh against itself or the author, it will be of some service. If it can set you to sleep, the benefit will be yet greater; and as some facetious personage observed half a century ago, that ‘poetry is a mere drug,’ I offer you mine as an humble assistant to the ‘eau mĂ©decinale.’ I trust you will forgive this and all my other buffooneries, and believe me to be, with great respect, your Lordship’s obliged and sincere servant, Byron.


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