Seaham Hall (December 16 1814)
‘Let us marry as soon as the writings are done, and we will disperse “the clouds”.
I feel nothing but sunshine in the thought of being thine – thy wife. You have made me most happy.
If you had sent the “heroic” reply which you meditated – I won’t tell you what mischief you might have done; so I do hope that without more ifs and Heroics you will end this questionable state forthwith.
You still leave your own wishes in sublime mystery – to try my powers of Divination?
We have gone on too long with the magnanimity-s that might keep us at a distance for ever; and if you won’t, I must take responsibility of speaking plain – only – don’t let me marry you against your will.
If assured that I shall not, I desire with all my heart to give myself to you.
We can have Halnaby as long as we like; therefore do not precipitately determine our future residence – at least not till we have met.
When will you come?
Your absence is an unwelcome as possible to everybody.
A part of your letter – if I do not misunderstand it, makes me regret that I have mentioned to Mrs. Leigh anything of your present difficulties.
So far from wishing undone that share of them which either your “duty” or “inclination” may be created, I regret that your means of bestowing so well will not be greater.
Lord Byron’s Wife Malcolm Elwin (London: John Murray 1962)