My Dear Hodgson

Lord Byron ranks high in the long list of poets on Greyweathers’ printing wish-list. I shy away a bit because I don’t really know him that well. It’s been a long time since I read his stuff, and he is more famous, to me at least, for his life and association with the origins of the gothic renaissance we are experiencing today. Mary Shelley got her start with Frankenstein thanks in part to Byron, and the same weekend produced Dr. Polidori’s Vampyr, and in every vampire ever since, I think there is a little bit of Byron.

It’s nice to know a poet still has some punch. Ian McKay reports in his Letter from London in the Maine Antiques Digest (Jan. edition) that part of a collection of letters from Lord Byron to Francis Hodgson sold at Sotheby’s from US$455,466. Some came from Byron’s European Grand Tour, which for him was the equivalent of today’s Spring Break in Fort Lauderdale In one letter he writes from Newstead Abbey in 1811: “the partridges are pleantiful… pheasants not quite so good, & the girls on the manor just coming into season….”

Oh, Byron.

Still, a half mil. I think he’d be pleased.

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