Page:The Corsair (Byron).djvu/112

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Vandals, Majorian ventured, after disguising the colour of his hair, to visit Carthage in the character of his own ambassador; and Genseric was afterwards mortified by the discovery, that he had entertained and dismissed the Emperor of the Romans. Such an anecdote may be rejected as an improbable fiction; but it is a fiction which would not have been imagined unless in the life of a hero." Gibbon, D. and F. Vol. VI. p. 180.

That Conrad is a character not altogether out of nature I shall attempt to prove by some historical coincidences which I have met with since writing "The Corsair."

"Eccelin prisonnier" dit Kolandini, "s'enfermoit dans un silence menacant, il fixoit sur la terre son visage feroce, et ne donnoit point d'essor a sa profonde indignation.—De toutes partes cependant les soldats & les peuples accouroient; ils vouloient voir cet homme, jadis si puissant, et la joie universelle eclatoit de toutes parts.


"Eccelin etoit d'une petite taille; mais tout l'aspect de sa personne, tous ses mouvemens indiquoient un soldat.—Son langage etoit amer, son deportment superbe—et par son seul egard, il faisoit trembler les plus hardis." Sismondi, tome III, page 219, 220.

"Gizericus (Genseric, king of the Vandals, the conqueror of both Carthage and Rome,) statura mediocris, et equi casu clandicans, animo profundus, sermone rarus, luxuriæ contemptor, irâ turbidus habendi, cupidus, ad solicitandas gentes providentissimus, &c. &c. Jornandes de Rebus Getiusy, c. 33.

I beg leave to quote these gloomy realities to keep in countenance my Giaour and Corsair.