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Record 26379

Reading Experience:

'[At Halnaby, on honeymoon] she [Anne Isabella Milbanke] was reading Dryden's Don Sebastian, which treats of incest, and happened to ask Byron [husband] a question. He said angrily: "Where did you hear that?" '"I looked up and saw that he was holding over me the dagger which he usually wore. I replied, "Oh, only from this book." I was not afraid -- I was persuaded he only did it to terrify me. He put the dagger down and said (I am sure I say it without a feeling of vanity) "If anything could make me believe in heaven, it is the expression of your countenance at this moment."'
Century: 1800-1849
Date: Between 1 Jan 1815 and 1 Mar 1815
Country: England
Time: n/a
Place: county: Yorkshire
specific address: Halnaby Hall
Type of Experience (Reader):
silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown
Type of Experience (Listener):
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown

Reader/Listener/Reading Group:

Reader:Anne Isabella Lady Byron
Age Adult (18-100+)
Gender Female
Date of Birth 17 May 1792
Socio-economic group: Royalty / aristocracy
Occupation: n/a
Religion: n/a
Country of origin: n/a
Country of experience: England
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: John Dryden
Title: Don Sebastian
Genre: Poetry
Form of Text: Print: Book
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: unknown


Source Information:

Record ID: 26379  
Source - Print  
  Author: Ethel Colburn Mayne
  Editor: n/a
  Title: The Life and Letters of Anne Isabella, Lady Noel Byron
  Place of Publication: London
  Date of Publication: 1929
  Vol: n/a
  Page: 162
  Additional comments: n/a

Citation: Ethel Colburn Mayne, The Life and Letters of Anne Isabella, Lady Noel Byron (London, 1929), p. 162,, accessed: 24 January 2022

Additional comments:

Byron sensitive regarding topic of incest owing to his own relations with his half-sister Augusta Leigh.



Reading Experience Database version 2.0.  Page updated: 27th Apr 2016  3:15pm (GMT)