LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
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A Narrative of Lord Byron’s Last Journey to Greece
Chapter IV

Chapter I
Chapter II
Chapter III
‣ Chapter IV
Chapter V
Chapter VI
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Lord Byron’s visit to Anatolico—His reception there—Return to Missolonghi—Arrival of Mr. Parry, with the stores of the London Greek committee—Interview and arrangement with the Suliote chieftains—News from the Morea—Letter from Lord Byron to Lord Sidney Osborne—Proceedings at the Seraglio—News from Patras, and communication with Lepanto—Proceedings with the Suliotes—Intrigues of the Moreote chiefs—difficulties with the Suliotes—Lord Byron attacked by a convulsive fit—Alarm at the Seraglio—Lord Byron releases twenty-four Turkish prisoners—Destruction of a Turkish brig—Captain Sasse killed by a Suliote—Disturbance with the Suliotes—The primates visit Lord Byron—Proposal from Ulysses to Lord Byron—The artillery brigade.

February 1.—At 10 o’clock in the morning, we set out for Anatolico, in one of the flat-bottomed boats with which they navigate the shallows: we arrived there in
three hours. It is an island in the midst of marshes, but the water is deeper than round Missolonghi: some low hills, covered with olive trees, bound the eastern shore of the bay, and the high mountains of Roumelia approach it to the north. The day was clear, the air temperate, and the view on one side at least very picturesque. Half a mile distant from the town we saw the plain, where two months ago were encamped the Pacha of Scutari, and
Omer Vrioni, with an army which amounted in the whole to twenty-four thousand, the greater part of them cavalry. Observing as we did the wretched little town which, with two or three ill-served cannons, and a garrison of a few hundred half-armed citizens, had defied such a powerful host, we formed no very formidable idea of the Ottoman power. The whole mischief inflicted by the shells and shot of the besiegers amounted only to the destruction of a few
cabins and old houses. We were shown one house, the highest perhaps in the whole town, at which the Turks had fired at least two hundred times, without striking it once.

As we approached the shore, an immense crowd of armed men, who were collected at our place of disembarkation, saluted us with salvos of musketry and discharges of artillery. As usual, the balls whistled at no great distance above our heads, and a cannon shot passed within three yards of our boat-head. We landed at one of the principal houses of the town, where we found the Archbishop Porfiri and all the primates in readiness to receive us. It was a day of ceremony, appointed for the inauguration of the city prefect, one Suzzo, of Constantinople, a courteous and well-informed young man. After many speeches very complimentary but very sincere on both sides, they set before us an
excellent dinner of fine fish, an English plum-pudding, and good champaign.

My Lord was afterwards conducted to the church of St. Michael, and had pointed out to him what the Greeks of Anatolico consider a miracle. At the beginning of the siege, a shell from a mortar fell on this church, killed the mother of the curate, and, burying itself in the floor, opened a spring of water, which, as it happened, was of the greatest service to the besieged, who before that time were obliged to repair to a well near the shore, with no little difficulty and danger. During the whole of our walk to the church, we were accompanied by a multitude, who anxiously testified their delight by shouts and wild music, and the usual discharge of musketry. We particularly remarked that the women (which, in the East, is the most decisive sign of congratulation) stood at
their balconies, clothed in their most magnificent dresses, and saluted my Lord as he passed. We were struck by the good looks and healthy appearance of the inhabitants, which we hardly expected in a town in the midst of marshes.
Lord Byron resolved to return to Missolonghi, although the primates and Mavrocordato used their best endeavours to induce him to remain until the next day. The Prince did stay, but my Lord went back, and during two hours of our journey we were annoyed by very heavy rains.

February 2, 3, 4, 5.—Several boats arrived with various articles belonging to the laboratory, from Dragomestre. At last, the Suliotes evacuated the Seraglio prepared to receive these utensils. On the morning of the 4th of February, however, which happened to be a holiday (of which there are more in Greece than there are working days), a great portion of the chests was
still lying on the beach, exposed to a violent rain, and we could not procure any porters to convey them to a place of shelter.
Byron lost all patience, and running himself down to the beach, he began to work with his own hands; so that what with his reproofs and his example, he contrived at last to overcome the indolence and the superstition of the people, and got the goods under cover.

At noon on the 5th, Mavrocordato came back from Anatolico; and at four o’clock of the same day, Mr. Parry arrived with the remainder of the stores, and the individuals who accompanied him. There were eight mechanics, four officers (volunteers), of whom two were English, one German, and one Swede, besides several Greeks.

February 6, 7, 8.—Mr. Parry was employed in the disposing of his stores in the Seraglio. A meeting was held, at which
Colonel Stanhope presided, to take account of the articles brought by Parry, and also to determine upon those which might be of service upon our expedition. It turned out that there were no Congreve rockets, and that it would require two months, and no small expense, to prepare any; so that all our hopes, and the expectations of the Greeks, who had thought wonders would be produced by these fireworks, vanished at once. The Greek fleet, too, was gone: in short, our only remaining dependence was from a siege and a capitulation. Notwithstanding this disappointment, Lord Byron resolved not to abandon the enterprise. We were busy in appointing a sort of staff amongst the European officers, of whom now there was a considerable number. Ten Germans, who had served two years in Greece, and who now had no other duty, offered to accompany Byron as a body guard: they were accepted.


February 8.—The Suliote chieftains, Bozzari, Giavella, Draco, and the others, had a meeting at Lord Byron’s with Mavrocordato. They all consented to serve under his “most illustrious Excellency;” they still cherished the same jealousies as to one another. I was appointed, together with a commissary of the government, to look over the list, and to separate the true from the pretended Suliotes. We determined that the corps should consist of six hundred, under Bozzari and Giavella; that the real Suliotes should have the preference; but that if there were any wanting to fill up the number, those from the neighbourhood, who had been their companions in arms, should be selected for that purpose. We resolved to march in a few days.

We had good news from the Morea. The legislative body had published a
manifesto, in which they declared their reasons for degrading the former executive council, who, they proved, had infringed ten principal articles of the Hellenic constitution. Those composing that body appeared more embarrassed every day; but fear was nevertheless entertained that they were approaching Napoli di Romania, in order to occupy that place.

February 9.—Colonel Stanhope now prepared himself for going into the Morea, in order to co-operate in the great work of appeasing the discords of that country. He was to give Lord Byron every information from time to time, whilst we were to be employed in the blockade of Lepanto.

Prince Mavrocordato wrote privately to Sir Thomas Maitland, to deprecate any bad consequences from the infraction of the
neutrality of the Ionian territory at Ithaca; and
Lord Byron enclosed this letter in the following, which he addressed to Lord Sidney Osborne:

“Missolonghi, February 9, 1824.

“Enclosed is a private communication from Prince Mavrocordato to Sir Thomas Maitland, which you will oblige me much by delivering. Sir Thomas can take as much or as little of it as he pleases; but I hope and believe that it is rather calculated to conciliate than to irritate on the subject of the late event near Ithaca and Sta Mauro; which there is every disposition on the part of the government here to disavow; and they are also disposed to give every satisfaction in their power. You must all be persuaded how difficult it is, under existing circumstances, for the Greeks to keep up discipline, however they may be all disposed to do so. I am doing all I can to convince them of the necessity of the strictest observance of the regulations of the islands, and, I trust, with some effect. I was received here with every possible public and private mark of respect. If you write to any of our friends, you can say that I am in good health and spirits; and that I shall stick by the cause as long as a man of honour can, without sparing purse, and (I hope, if need be) person.”


We were much occupied at the Seraglio with disposing of the articles belonging to the laboratory in such a manner as to render them serviceable for the artillery brigade. Nothing could be more striking than the sudden change of appearance in the building itself: whilst in the hands of the Suliotes, it bore every mark of indolence and neglect; but no sooner were the English artificers introduced than life and energy were communicated, as it were, to the very walls themselves; and we could scarcely recognise the barracks when appropriated to their new inmates.

February 10.—We took this opportunity of handing over the medicines, sent by the Quakers, to Dr. Millingen, in order to provide for the troops, and to form a dispensary for those in want of medical assistance. Mr. Parry, as director of the laboratory, was to be appointed commander
of the artillery brigade; but
Mr. Kinderman, a Prussian officer, thinking it beneath him to serve under a fire-master (such was Parry’s original rank), waited on Lord Byron to give up his commission. Lord Byron did all he could to dissuade him; and he joked him not a little on the quarterings of his German escutcheon, and on the folly of introducing his prejudices into a country like Greece. “As for myself,” said Byron, “I should be perfectly ready to serve as a common soldier, under any body, if it be thought of any good to the cause.” Mr. Kinderman, however, was not to be persuaded, and withdrew from us; but all the other Germans remained. We added to the number of our brigade, and had before us the prospect of being, in a very short time, capable of manœuvring at least the cannon which were sent out with the laboratory. Byron paid a visit to the new establishment, and to the exercising ground;
and was much occupied, this day, in conferences with

February 11.—We heard the news of the death of Sir Thomas Maitland. The Frankfort Gazette asserted that there were public rejoicings on the occasion at Missolonghi. That calumny has been already contradicted. Two Greeks, escaped from Patras, brought us intelligence that the quarrels there were continual, and that much blood had been shed in affrays between the European and Asiatic Turks. Yussuff Pacha himself had been obliged to interfere in person, and had with great difficulty appeased the combatants. From Lepanto we heard that the Albanians had made themselves masters of the castle; had pointed the cannon against the town, and had demanded the arrears of their pay. It was reported, that they would surrender to Lord Byron the moment he appeared
with the Greek forces under the walls; for, besides their own dissensions, our cause was forwarded by the exaggerated accounts which prevailed in the Turkish quarters of the extent of our means.

Lord Byron sent this day a messenger to Zante for another supply of money, which might be necessary in our intended expedition; for we now learnt that one of our spies had contrived to have a conference with one of the Albanian chieftains in Lepanto; and that this person had assured him that the troops would surrender to Lord Byron, provided they could be secure of their lives and of their arrears of pay.

In consequence of this intelligence, we took every step that our circumstances would admit of. A corps of 1500 men, under several chieftains, were sent two days
in advance, to wait for our arrival, and to provide for our forces. Our remaining care was to get our Suliote corps into good order, and to discipline our cannoneers. As for artillery, supposing that to be necessary, we were to send for a battering train from the citadel of Corinth.

February 12, 13.—I was occupied during these days in carefully examining into the state of our Suliote corps, and in reducing their numbers to an effective body of soldiers, after sending away those who were too young or too old, or too infirm. In many instances I found in the lists names of persons who were nowhere to be seen. This was a common device of theirs when serving in the wars against Ali Pacha, and the same deceit prevails in all the Turkish armies; so that a body of troops which appears upon paper to amount to thirty or forty thousand is often not more than a
third of that number. The chieftains receive the pay for the complete force, and put the difference into their own pockets. The Greeks, at the beginning of their struggle, had been exposed to the same deception; but a little regularity would soon remedy the evil.

The greatest number of the Suliotes were followers of Constantine Bozzari, whose conduct was more satisfactory than that of the other chiefs; but even the number of those followers was far from being permanently arranged; for as each captain was anxious to increase his own importance by adding to his own troops, he left no means untried to seduce the dependents of other chieftains; so that it often happened that six or twelve soldiers, who were yesterday under Giavella, were to-day followers of Bozzari. We did all in our power to remedy this evil. At last, all our difficulties seemed at
an end. We agreed to assemble the whole body of the Suliotes the next day, to read to them the agreement mutually made between themselves and with us, and to give them a month’s pay in advance. The day afterwards, I was to march with the vanguard of 300 of them, and take up a position under Lepanto.
Lord Byron and Prince Mavrocordato were informed of the result of the inspection of the Suliotes; and the latter confessed to me that they had been the source of infinite disquietude to him; and that although they certainly were amongst the bravest of the Greek tribes, at the same time they were the most discontented and intractable.

February 14.—This morning Lord Byron received letters from the legislative body, and from the new executive council. They informed him that Pietro Bey and his friends were gathered together at Tripolizza, and
appeared resolved to back their pretensions by open force, notwithstanding that the government had taken every precaution to frustrate their efforts. The factious had, we learnt, taken care to spread all sorts of ridiculous rumours respecting us and our intentions; one of them was, that
Mavrocordato was about to invade the Morea with ten thousand men, and then to sell that country to the English. Another story was, that Lord Byron, in fact, was not an Englishman, but a Turk, under a false name, who had invented a deep-laid scheme with Mavrocordato for the ruin of Greece. We laughed heartily at this singular mode of outwitting an antagonist in politics. But the arrival of many Suliotes from the Morea, where they had served under Colocotroni, made us suspect that these men had been sent to Missolonghi to add to our previous dissensions. According to appointment, I had this morning another
meeting with the Suliote chieftains, in presence of Mavrocordato; and, after a tedious discussion, these persons withdrew, and promised to send me their definitive answer in three hours. At five in the afternoon their answer did arrive. They required that the government should appoint, out of their number, two generals, two colonels, two captains, and inferior officers in the same proportion; in short, that out of three or four hundred actual Suliotes, there should be about one hundred and fifty above the rank of common soldiers. Their object, of course, was to increase their pay. Mavrocordato was disgusted with their impudent dishonesty, and Lord Byron burst into a violent passion, and protested that he would have no more to do with these people. We afterwards found out that these demands had been instigated by a messenger secretly sent by Colocotroni, who had promised great ad-
vantages to the Suliotes if they would abandon Mavrocordato and join his party. What was still more distressing to us was the discovery that this very spy of Colocotroni had been one of those whom Lord Byron had relieved in Cephalonia, where, indeed, we had already seen enough of the conduct of the Suliotes to give us no favourable impression of their character. Each step that we took in Greece convinced us of the indispensable necessity of forming a body of regular troops.

February 15.—This morning Mavrocordato sent for me: I found him with Nota Bozzari, who did not scruple to throw all the blame of the indecent conduct of his countrymen upon those who had arrived recently from the Morea. Shortly afterwards, all the other chieftains entered the room: I told them at once, on the part of Lord Byron, that his Lordship was glad
that he had in time discovered that their discords could not by any means be appeased; and that the most artless intriguer was capable of making them abandon all their intentions, and break all their promises. Had his Lordship discovered this a little later, perhaps the cause of Greece and his own character might have been compromised. He had hoped that what he had done for them might have gained their confidence; and he had intended other efforts in their favour. Now, however, he was resolved to have nothing more to do with them as a body, although he neither repented what he had done for them, nor would discontinue to relieve their families. I concluded by telling them that I was ordered by Lord Byron to say that every agreement between him and the Suliotes was to be considered as null and void.
Constantine Bozzari replied, that he lamented their discords, and more parti-
cularly on account of the disgust and disquietude which they must have caused to a person to whom all Greece, and peculiarly his fellow-countrymen, were under so many obligations, and regarded, indeed, as their father. But he confessed that these dissensions were too old and inveterate to be speedily cured, and that they would probably continue; but not so as to prevent them from fighting for their country, far less to cause them to forget the benefits received from Lord Byron. They were perfectly aware of what they lost by their misconduct. As to himself, he added, that he would remain if only five men remained with him, and would serve under his Lordship as a common soldier. At last we came to this conclusion: that a new corps should be raised, no matter from what tribe, composed of six hundred, as before agreed upon; that Bozzari should command three hundred, and that the other
three hundred should be commanded by a captain of Lord Byron’s naming: in fine, that the whole body should act under the immediate orders of his Lordship and his lieutenant.

I carried this proposition to Lord Byron, who thought it, on the whole, the best that could be now adopted; but he was exceedingly vexed at the necessary abandonment of his present project against Lepanto, at the time that the success of it seemed so probable. He had not been able to ride to-day, nor for some days before, on account of the rain. He had been extremely annoyed at the vexations caused by the Suliotes, as also with the various other interruptions from petitions, demands, and remonstrances, which never left him a moment’s peace at any hour of the day. At seven in the evening I went into his room on some business, and found him lying on
the sofa: he was not asleep, and seeing me enter, called out, “I am not asleep—come in—I am not well.”

At eight o’clock, he went down stairs to visit Colonel Stanhope. The conversation turned upon our newspaper. We agreed that it was not calculated to give foreigners the necessary intelligence of what was passing in Greece; because, being written in Romaic, it was not intelligible, except to a few strangers. We resolved to publish another, in several languages, and Lord Byron promised to furnish some articles himself. When I left the room, he was laughing and joking with Mr. Parry and the colonel;—he was drinking some cider.

I had scarcely got away before I was overtaken by one of his guards, out of breath, who told me that my Lord had been seized with a violent convulsion fit.
I ran back, and found him in bed, with the medical men about him: he was recovered, but still very weak. For a short time the greatest alarm had prevailed. I learnt from those who were with him at the time, that, as he was sitting on a sofa, joking with
Parry, and had a glass of cider and water in his hand, they remarked a sudden change of countenance come over him: he complained of a pain in his knee, and tried to stand up, but could not walk. At that moment the change of countenance became more remarkable: he found himself fainting, and fell upon Colonel Stanhope’s bed. He then lost his speech, and was dreadfully convulsed, so much so, that two strong men, Parry and his servant Battista, could scarcely hold him down. His features were distorted. The doctors came to him, and in three minutes he recovered his senses and his speech. He was carried up stairs to his own bed, and at that time complained
only of weakness. No distortion of the features was now observable. As soon as he could speak, he showed himself perfectly free from all alarm; but he very coolly asked, whether his attack was likely to prove fatal? “Let me know,” he said. “Do not think I am afraid to die—I am not.” He told me that when he lost his speech he did not lose his senses; that he had suffered great pain, and that he believed, if the convulsion had lasted a minute longer, he must have died. The same sentiment is expressed in the journal which he wrote two days after the fit, in which he breaks off the account he was then putting upon record, in order to notice the news of a Turkish brig being stranded near Missolonghi. This event seems to have made him at once forget his own calamity. It is impossible to do justice to the coolness and magnanimity which he displayed upon every trying occasion. Upon trifling oc-
casions he was certainly irritable; but the aspect of danger calmed him in an instant, and restored to him the free exercise of all the powers of his noble nature. A more undaunted man in the hour of peril never breathed. The attack had been brought on principally by the vexations which I have before dwelt upon; but his mode of living was also in part a cause of this fit. He ate nothing but fish, cheese, and vegetables; having regulated his table so as not to cost more than forty-five paras. This he did to show that he could live on fare as simple as that of the Greek soldiers. The weather had prevented him from using exercise, and we repeatedly remonstrated with him on the necessity of some change in his habits. We felt a most painful alarm at the very suspicion of any serious danger to him; but we flattered ourselves with the notion that if we could contrive to get him into the open air, and even renew those violent
exercises which had agreed so well with him formerly, he would not experience any bad consequences from his late attack. Lord Byron’s fit had not taken place more than half an hour, when a false alarm was brought to us that the Suliotes had taken to their arms, and were about to attack the Seraglio, in order to seize upon our powder and cannon, and other magazines. We ran to our arsenal: Parry ordered the artillerymen under arms; our cannon were loaded and pointed on the approaches to the gates; the sentinels were doubled.

This alarm had originated with two Germans, who, having taken too much wine, and seeing a body of soldiers with their guns in their hands, proceeding towards the Seraglio, had at once thought that a revolution was at hand, and spread their news over the whole town. The fact was, these troops were merely changing
quarters. These Germans were so inconsiderate, that whilst we were at the arsenal, they forced their way into
Byron’s bedchamber, swearing that they came to defend him and his house. Fortunately, we were not present; for, as this was so short a time after his Lordship’s attack, we should have been tempted to fling the intruders out of window.

February 16.—My Lord was better today, and he got up at noon; but he was very pale and weak, and he had a sensation of weight in his head. The doctors applied eight leeches to his temples, and the blood flowed very copiously: it was stopped with difficulty, and he fainted. However, he made a joke of his fit, notwithstanding it was far from a subject of pleasantry with us, who knew how much depended on the health of Lord Byron.


We had some more news from Lepanto: the Albanians had had another interview with our messenger, and had expressed themselves ready to give up the castle to my Lord. Indeed, they added, that they would bring about the surrender of the castles of the Morea and Patras: but this was only to increase their credit with us.

The fortifications of Missolonghi being very much in want of repair, Parry undertook to put the city into a perfect state of defence for 1000 dollars, as also to repair the fortress of Basiladi, which, from its position in the shallows, might be considered as the key of Missolonghi. The magistrates accepted the offer, and agreed to give 1500 dollars towards the completion of the work.

Another opportunity now occurred, by which Lord Byron was able to follow up
his former efforts towards inculcating the principles and practice of humanity into both the nations engaged in the present struggle. There were two-and-twenty Turks, including women and children, who had been held in captivity in Missolonghi since the beginning of the Revolution. Lord Byron made a request to the government that they might be given up to him. It was granted; and my Lord, after providing them with what was requisite, sent them to Prevesa, with the following letter to
Mr. Mayer, the English Consul at that port.


“Coming to Greece, one of my principal objects was to alleviate as much as possible the miseries incident to a warfare so cruel as the present. When the dictates of humanity are in question, I know no difference between Turks and Greeks. It is enough that those who want assistance are men, in order to claim the pity and protection of the meanest pretender to humane feelings. I have found here twenty-four Turks, including women and children, who have long pined in distress, far from
the means of support and the consolations of their home. The government has consigned them to me: I transmit them to Prevesa, whither they desire to be sent. I hope you will not object to take care that they may be restored to a place of safety, and that the governor of your town may accept of my present. The best recompense I can hope for would be to find that I had inspired the Ottoman commanders with the same sentiments towards those unhappy Greeks who may hereafter fall into their hands.

“I beg you to believe me, &c.

Amongst the Turks at Missolonghi there was a girl of eight or nine years of age, very lively and with handsome oriental features, who had lived for three years in the town upon the charity of the inhabitants. In the time of the Turks her family had been one of the most wealthy and powerful of the whole city; but when the Revolution broke out, her father made his escape, and was now with Yussuff Pacha. My Lord was struck with her pitiable condition, and
took charge of her; and as at this time neither she nor her mother wished to be sent to Prevesa with their fellow-countrymen, he prepared to have them conveyed to the Ionian Islands, and thence either to England or to Italy, for her education. For this purpose he wrote to
Dr. Kennedy of Cephalonia, requesting that his excellent lady would be so good as to undertake the care of the girl, at least for a few months.

February 17.—News was brought to us this morning that a Turkish brig of war had stranded upon a shoal of sand about seven miles from the city, and that many Greek boats manned with soldiers had set off in the hope of making a prize of her. After twelve o’clock, we went with Parry and some other European officers, to reconnoitre the brig, which we conjectured would turn out a prize of considerable value. A broad and long neck of land, separating the shal-
lows from the sea, ran out towards the spot where the vessel was stranded, and we discovered that it would be easy to plant a couple of cannon under cover of this point, and to make ourselves masters of the brig. This day, with the assistance of
Mavrocordato, I finally arranged with Constantine Bozzari and Kizzo Giavella, that they should enrol a troop of six hundred men belonging to any tribe they pleased, provided only that they were from Koumelia, where the people are better acquainted with mountain warfare, and more inured to fatigue, than in the Morea. The whole body were to be under the orders of Lord Byron.

February 18.—Early in the morning we prepared for our attack on the brig. Lord Byron, notwithstanding his weakness and an inflammation that threatened his eyes, was most anxious to be of our party; but
the physician would not suffer him to go.
Mavrocordato, Colonel Stanhope, Constantine Bozzari, and a considerable body of troops, rowed over to the neck of land in canoes across the shallows. In the mean time, Parry was putting in order his cannon and his artillery-men, which could not be embarked before noon. When we came up, we found three Turkish brigs from Patras, whose launches were making every effort to draw the vessel from the sand into deep water, but without effect. They then began to disarm the brig. We approached as near as we could, in order to interrupt their operations and to gain time: they fired a few vollies at us, but without doing any mischief. Unfortunately, as the tide was down, we could not bring up our guns until sunset: at last we heard a loud explosion, and saw the vessel in flames; for the Turks having taken out the crew and what they could save of the stores, had
set fire to the brig. We passed the night in the boats. Such was the end of our expedition. Lord Byron had promised a reward for every Turk taken alive in the proposed attack on the vessel.

February 19.—In the morning, Colonel Stanhope returned to Missolonghi, whilst Mavrocordato and the others went some way round, in order to touch at Basiladi, where the Prince was expected to give the meeting to the captain of an English frigate, who had arrived the day before at Missolonghi, to complain as usual of the capture of some Ionian boats; and not finding the governor in the town, had appointed a conference with him at Basiladi the next day. This took place at nine in the morning; and leaving Mavrocordato with the English officers, I continued my route with Constantine Bozzari toward Missolonghi.


At eleven o’clock I arrived there. Entering the yard of our house, I remarked that Byron’s two small cannon were pointed against the gateway: this was quite new. I went into the house; there was a dead silence in the apartments. I soon learnt the cause: there had been a fray between the Suliotes and our artillery-men. Sasse, one of our German officers, was mortally wounded. The Suliotes were in arms: it was thought they would attack the Seraglio, and perhaps even our own house: the city was in a great alarm. A council was immediately held with Lord Byron and Colonel Stanhope, and it was decided, either that all the Suliotes should depart from Missolonghi, or that my Lord and every foreigner would at once leave the town.

Lord Byron spoke of going to the Ionian Islands, and waiting the arrival of the de-
puties; both his personal safety (under these new circumstances) and his health seemed to require the change.

I ran to the arsenal—Sasse was no more. The guns were pointed against the doorway; all the Franks had retired thither; and the utmost sadness as well as anger prevailed in the whole party.

Many contradictory stories were told to me as to the manner in which this sad event had occurred; but I believe the truth to have been as follows:

A Suliote, formerly a friend of Marco Bozzari, and now a follower of his brother, much esteemed for his courage and his gentleness, came to the Seraglio (where he had lived for six months), with a little nephew of Bozzari, to show him our cannon and other instruments of warfare.
The guard at the door, one of our artillerymen, stopped him, saying he was not allowed to enter; and indeed such an order had been given, in order to keep off the crowd of curious Greeks, who would otherwise have impeded our operations. The Suliote answered, that he was one of the house, and tried to push forward. The serjeant, an Hungarian, ran up, took hold of him by the breast, and endeavoured to turn him away by force. The Suliote got into a rage, and gave him a blow: the serjeant was without arms, and called out for the guard.
Sasse, who was the officer on guard, ran down stairs, and finding the serjeant struggling with the Suliote, drew his sword, and told him to arrest the intruder. The Suliote now wished to retire, but Sasse persisted in his arrest, and gave him a blow on the neck with the flat of his sword. The Suliote could contain himself no longer; he drew his attaghan, and wounded Sasse in his left arm, which he almost separated from
his body. The serjeant contrived to open the pan of one of the pistols belonging to the Suliote, and to throw out the priming; but the man drew out the other, fired, and shot Sasse with three balls in the head, who fell lifeless, without speaking a word. The whole had passed in less time than I am telling the story. The artillery-men ran to the spot and arrested the Suliote, whose left hand it appeared had been wounded with more than one ball, although the second pistol had not been discharged, and no one had fired but himself; so that we concluded he must have shot himself with part of the charge that had wounded Sasse. Shortly after, his countrymen crowded in great numbers about the Seraglio, which they threatened to burn, unless the man was released. This was accordingly done, in order to prevent worse disasters.

Sasse survived only half an hour. He was universally esteemed as one of the best
and bravest of the foreigners in the service of Greece.

The Suliotes now determined to leave the town; but this put an end to the enterprise against Lepanto. They talked of marching upon Arta, where they hoped to find considerable booty. They owned that they did not like to fight against stone walls. Lord Byron offered to give them a month’s pay if they would go; and they might go where they pleased.

February 20.—This day the funeral of poor Sasse took place. He was buried with much ceremony in a grave between Marco Bozzari and General Normann. The Suliote chiefs attempted to lay all the blame of this accident on Sasse himself, whose imprudence indeed was scarcely to be justified: but at any rate, we were convinced that the best thing for us would be to get
rid of these fierce mountaineers, who appeared altogether intractable. The primates came in a body to pay a visit to
Lord Byron. They first inquired after his health; then condoled with him on the loss of Sasse, and concluded by requesting a loan of 3000 dollars, without which they said they could not be quit of these rude soldiers. Lord Byron granted their request, on condition that they would take care that the Suliotes actually did go; but, he added, that as for himself, he had resolved to abandon for the present his intention of engaging personally in some military enterprise.

My Lord went out riding. He was exceedingly vexed. “I begin to fear,” said he to me, “that I have done nothing but lose time, money, patience, and health; but I was prepared for it: I knew that ours was not a path of roses, and that I
ought to make up my mind to meet with deception, and calumny, and ingratitude.”

I begged him most strenuously to pay a visit to Athens, for his health, and to relieve himself from his daily annoyances. “No,” he replied, “no, they would not leave me more tranquil there than here; besides, I did not come here in search of tranquillity; I am neither undeceived nor discouraged. You know very well that this enterprise of mine was only a secondary object; my first aim was to know something of those soldiers. I think we have gained that point at least. I must wait here to see the turn that things take in the Morea, and to receive news from London. In the mean time we will fortify Missolonghi and Anatolico; and we will see what sort of regular troops we can make of the Greeks by accustom-
ing them to discipline under foreign officers.”

February 21.—A fresh disappointment awaited Lord Byron; for this morning six of the artificers, who came out with Parry, declared their resolution to return to England. They said that they had bargained to be conducted into a place of safety. Byron tried to persuade them that the fray had been accidental; and that, after the departure of the Suliotes, nothing of the kind would happen again; besides that, as he staid, there could not be any serious danger. His arguments were useless: they said they had heard balls whistle over their heads whilst at work, and that they should be murdered. It was in vain to tell them that the firing of ball was a daily occurrence—they would go. But Mr. Parry remained, with only two men, who were rather as-
sistants than artificers. This step made us fear that our laboratory would come to nothing; for if we tried to supply the place of the artificers with native Greeks, we should make but little progress.

About eight o’clock this evening we had a violent shock of an earthquake. This occasioned a general discharge of musketry throughout the town, according to a superstition of the Greeks on such occasions.

February 22.—A new plan was resolved upon for the reorganisation of our artillery corps. Lord Byron agreed to add to the funds provided for that object, so as to enable us to augment the number of our men. Part of these were to be trained to artillery exercise, the rest to the use of the musket, as a guard for the guns. We could not have a regular body of infantry, having no muskets with bayonets. Our
object was twofold: if we should be disappointed of our means to create a larger body of regular troops, we might add a number of undisciplined forces, and Lord Byron could take the field with them in the spring. If, on the contrary, our succours arrived in time, we might then form a considerable corps of disciplined soldiers, upon the model of those already established. The government undertook to furnish rations for us. This evening Lord Byron suffered a slight return of his attack, in the right leg; but it quickly disappeared.

February 23 to 28.—We were much busied in preparing letters for the Ionian Islands, Italy, and England, which were to go by the artificers. The primates came in a body to visit my Lord again. Their visit had the usual object. They began with thanks and adulation, and then concluded with asking for more money. Lord Byron
was tired of this way of going on; and not only refused them, but declared that, unless they put a stop to their importunities, he should be obliged, however against his will, to leave the country. They were mortified at his answer, and retired.

The weather was somewhat better. Lord Byron was able to renew his former long rides, and his health received a visible benefit from them. We feared, however, that he had adopted too abstemious a mode of living. He took no other food than vegetables and fish, and drank only water. He was always inclined to follow extremes. Parry found some Greek artificers, who enabled him to make some progress with his laboratory. Our artillery recruits were increased in number, and their exercises were performed with admirable promptitude and precision. There was no want of volunteers,
so that we were able to select those whom we thought best suited for our purpose.

At this time Mr. Finlay, an English gentleman, came from Athens, having been eleven days on the road. He brought a message from Ulysses, and also from Mr. Trelawny, who acted as his aid-de-camp, to Lord Byron, and to Prince Mavrocordato. The purport of this message was to invite them to a conference at Salona. Ulysses was now understood to be extremely well-disposed to compose all his former differences with the government; and, being individually of much importance, it was expedient to give every attention to his proposal. He was at this time besieging Negropont and Caristo; and, with the exception of these fortresses, the remainder of the island of Eubœa was in his hands. His forces amounted to between 3000 and
4000 men. He requested a supply of Congreve’s rockets, of powder, and cannon; but all we could do was to send him a few barrels of powder. Ulysses was formerly in the service of
Ali Pacha; and even at this time his body-guard is composed of Mahometans. Since the beginning of the revolution he has served his country with zeal and energy, and a presence of mind which is his characteristic trait. He is accused of being ambitious; but avarice is not imputed to him. He determined to put the citadel of Athens into an excellent state of defence, and to provision it with equal care. The mode in which he accomplished this latter object is worth telling. The primates and the chiefs of the neighbouring province had confided that fortress to his care, but without assisting him to feed the garrison; for, when he applied to the inhabitants of the town and vicinity for provision, they would furnish
him with none. Accordingly, he marched off half of his troops from the fortress, and gave out that they were gone to meet the enemy at only half a day’s journey from Athens. At this news the inhabitants of the town ran with their stores as fast as possible into the Acropolis, and, before the stratagem was discovered, the citadel had provisions enough within its walls to last for a year.

February 28.—We had news from the Morea that their discords were almost at an end. The government was acquiring credit daily, and Staico and Coliopulo, relations and zealous partisans of Colocotroni, were observed to have daily conferences with those at the head of affairs. The Acrocorinthus was in the hands of Notora, a chieftain attached to the government; so that, on the whole, the Greek affairs appeared to take as favourable an aspect as we could well desire.


Each day we had offers of service from some foreigner or the other, either of those who were still alive of the former Phillelenic corps, or of travellers newly arrived in the country. Lord Byron admitted almost all of them, either into the artillery corps, or as a sort of chosen guard, thinking it of the utmost importance to engage as many officers as possible, in order to be prepared for disciplining the soldiery, when we should be able to augment the number of our regular forces. Thus we had them of all nations—English, Scotch, Irish, Americans, Germans, Swiss, Belgians, Russians, Swedes, Danes, Hungarians, and Italians. We were a sort of crusade in miniature. The word of command was given in Greek, but French and Italian were the languages in common use.

My Lord and Prince Mavrocordato settled that, in a fortnight, they would go to Salona.