John Wilson Manuscripts - Facsimiles
Lord Byron - The 'Vampire' letter
The letter from Lord Byron to the publisher [Jean Antoine] Galignani, dated Venice, 27 April 1819, in which he denies authorship of a work entitled 'The Vampire' [written by his physician, Dr Polidori], is one of the most common and notorious facsimiles. It was originally published in Galignani's edition of Works of Lord Byron, Paris, 1826. It is of three pages 4to (ca 10 x 8 inches) and our example is watermarked 1828, i.e. four years after the poet's death. It is one of the easiest facsimiles to detect, as the ink is pure black and lies very flat on the page. The original letter from which the facsimile was produced is known to exist, and is cited by Louis Marchand (Byron's Letters and Journals, supplementary volume, page 94) as being in the possession of Frederick R. Koch. A note by Marchand on page 51 of the same volume explains that Galignani had ingeniously managed to omit a sentence from the letter when making the facsimile. Our illustration shows the first page only.

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