Page images


know, I have had a thousand times.'-'I am sure, my lord,' said I, that you never had one of so serious a nature.'—' I think I never had,' was his lordship's answer. I repeated my supplications that Dr Thomas should be sent for on the 15th, and was again assured that my master would be better in two or three days. After these confident assurances, I did not renew my entreaties until it was too late. With respect to the medicines that were given to my master, I could not persuade myself that those of a strong purgative nature were the best adapted for his complaint, concluding that, as he had nothing on his stomach, the only effect would be to create pain: indeed this must have been the case with a person in perfect health. The whole nourishment taken by my master, for the last eight days, consisted of a small quantity of broth at two or three different times, and two spoonsful of arrow-root on the 18th, the day before his death. The first time I heard of there being any intention of bleeding his lordship, was on the 15th, when it was proposed by Dr Bruno, but objected to at first by my master, who asked Mr Millingen if there was any very great reason for taking blood ?—The latter replied that it might be of service, but added that it could be deferred till the next day;and accordingly my master was bled in the right arm, on the evening of the 16th, and a pound of blood was taken. I observed at the time, that it had a most in

flamed appearance. Dr Bruno now began to say he had frequently urged my master to be bled, but that he always refused. A long dispute now arose about the time that had been lost, and the necessity of sending for medical assistance to Zante; upon which I was informed, for the first time, that it would be of no use, as my master would be better, or no more, before the arrival of Dr Thomas. His lordship continued to get worse: but Dr Bruno said, he thought letting blood again would save his life; and I lost no time in telling my master how necessary it was to comply with the doctor's wishes. To this he replied by saying, he feared they knew nothing about his disorder; and then, stretching out his arm, said, “Here, take my arm, and do whatever you like.' His lordship continued to get weaker; and on the 17th he was bled twice in the morning, and at two o'clock in the afternoon. The bleeding at both times was followed by fainting fits, and he would have fallen down more than once, had I not caught him in my arms. In order to prevent such an accident, I took care not to let his lordship stir without supporting him. On this day my master said to me twice, “I cannot sleep, and you well know I have not been able to sleep for more than a week: I know,' added his lordship, that a man can only be a certain time without sleep, and then he must go mad, without any one being able to save him; and I would ten times

[ocr errors]

sooner shoot myself than be mad, for I am not afraid of dying, -I am more fit to die than people think.' I do not, however, believe that his lordship had any apprehension of his fate till the day after, the 18th, when he said, 'I fear you and Tita will be ill by sitting up constantly night and day.' I answered, “We shall never leave your lordship till you are better.' As my master had a slight fit of delirium on the 16th, I took care to remove the pistols and stiletto, which had hitherto been kept at his bedside in the night. On the 18th his lordship addressed me frequently, and seemed to be very much dissatisfied with his medical treatment. I then said, “Do allow me to send for Dr Thomas;' to which he answered, “Do so, but be quick. I am sorry I did not let you do so before, as I am sure they have mistaken

my disease. Write yourself, for I know they would not like to see other doctors here.' I did not lose a moment in obeying my master's orders; and on informing Dr Bruno and Mr Millingen of it, they said it was very right, as they now began to be afraid themselves.

On returning to my master's room, his first words were, ‘Have you sent?'_I have, my lord,' was my answer; upon which he said, “You have done right, for I should like to know what is the matter with me.' Although his lordship did not appear to think his dissolution was so near, I could perceive he was getting weaker every hour, and he even began to have occa

sional fits of delirium. He afterwards said, I now begin to think I am seriously ill; and, in case I should be taken off suddenly, I wish to give you several directions, which I hope you will be particular in seeing executed.' I answered, I would, in case such an event came to pass; but expressed a hope that he would live many years to execute them much better himself than I could. To this my master replied, “ No, it is now nearly over;'and then added, 'I must tell you all without losing a moment!' I then said, 'Shall I go, my lord, and fetch pen, ink, and paper?'—'Oh, my God! no, you will lose too much time, and I have it not to spare, for my time is now short,' said his lordship; and immediately after, * Now, pay attention.' His lordship commenced by saying, ‘You will be provided for.' I begged him, however, to proceed with things of more consequence. He then continued, 'Oh, my poor dear child!—my dear Ada! My God! could I but have seen her! Give her my blessing-and my dear sister Augusta and her children ;-and you will go to Lady Byron, and say tell her every thing ;-you are friends with her.' His lordship appeared to be greatly affected at this moment. Here my master's voice failed him, so that I could only catch a word at intervals ; but he kept muttering something very seriously for some time, and would often raise his voice and say, “Fletcher, now if you do not execute every order which I have given you, I will torment you hereafter if possible.' Here I told his lordship, in a state of the greatest perplexity, that I had not understood a word of what he said ; to which he replied, ‘Oh, my God! then all is lost, for it is now too late! Can it be possible you have not understood me?'—'No, my lord,' said I; “but I pray you to try and inform me once more.'—“How can I?' rejoined my master; 'it is now too late, and all is over!' I said, “Not our will, but God's be done!'—and he answered, 'Yes, not mine be done—but I will try—- His lordship did indeed make several efforts to speak, but could only repeat two or three words at a time—such as, my wife! my child! my sister!-you know all-you must say all-you know my wishes:'the rest was quite unintelligible. A consultation was now held (about noon), when it was determined to administer some Peruvian bark and wine. My master had now been nine days without any sustenance whatever, except what I havealready mentioned. With the exception of a few words, which can only interest those to whom they were addressed, and which, if required, I shall communicate to themselves, it was impossible to understand any thing his lordship said after taking the bark. He expressed a wish to sleep. I at one time asked whether I should call Mr Parry; to which he replied, “Yes, you may call him.' Mr Parry desired him to compose himself. He shed tears, and apparently sunk into a slumber. Mr Parry went

« PreviousContinue »