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TO LORD BYRON.
DEAR LORD BYRON,
Though this Volume should possess no other merit in your eyes, than that of reminding you of the short time we passed together at Venice, when some of the trifles which it contains were written, you will, I am sure, receive the dedication of it with pleasure, and believe that I am,
My dear Lord,
Though it was the wish of the Members of the Poco-curante Society (who have lately done me the honour of electing me their Secretary) that I should prefix my name to the following Miscellany, it is but fair to them and to myself to state, that, except in the “painful preëminence” of being employed to transcribe their lucubrations, my claim to such a distinction in the title-page is not greater than that of any other gentleman, who has contributed his share to the contents of the volume.
I had originally intended to take this opportunity of giving some account of the origin and objects of our Institution, the names and characters of the different members, etc. etc. — but, as I am at present preparing for the press the First Volume of the “ Transactions of the Poco-curante Society,” I shall reserve for that occasion all further details
the subject; and content myself here with referring, for a general insight into our tenets, to a Song which will be found at the end of this work, and which is sung to us on the first day of every month, by one
of our oldest members, to the tune of (as far as I can recollect, being no musician,) either “ Nancy Dawson” or “ He stole away the Bacon.”
It may be as well also to state, for the information of those critics, who attack with the hope of being answered, and of being, thereby, brought into notice, that it is the rule of this Society to return no other answer to such assailants, than is contained in the three words “ Non curat Hippoclides,” (meaning, in English, “ Hippoclides does not care a fig,”) which were spoken two thousand years ago by the first founder of Poco-curantism, and have ever since been adopted as the leading dictum of the sect.
FABLES FOR THE HOLY ALLIANCE.
THE DISSOLUTION OF THE HOLY ALLIANCE.
I've had a dream that bodes no good
As far as it is right or lawful
It seems to me extremely awful.
Methought, upon the Neva's flood
* “It is well known that the Empress Anne built a palace of ice on the Neva, in 1740, which was fifty-two feet in length, and when illuminated had a surprising effect.” – PINKERTON.