The Byron Journal

Byron, the Matchless Lily and Aurora

The Byron Journal (2016), 44, (1), 15–26.

Abstract

From the moment Aurora is introduced into Don Juan her stillness disconcerts not just the household and guests at Norman Abbey, but her creator himself. Byron had conjured a character who is the summation of the tangible in his art as well as the intangible in his life, but his virtuosic performance in Cantos XV and XVI cannot quite disguise that he does not know what to do with her—and she ends up blocking him and his poem. Why, exactly? Further, three allusive lines within the text suggest that the fictional Aurora had a real-life referent in Byron’s past: who was she? This article outlines answers to both questions and points to the ghost in Byron’s psyche—his need for redemption.

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Author details

Gayle, N. E.