Lord (George Gordon) Byron (1788-1824)

From Canto II of Don Juan:
For all we know that English people are
Fed upon beef - I won't say much of beer
Because 'tis liquor only, and being far
From this my subject, has no business here;
We know too, they are very fond of war,
A pleasure - like all pleasures - rather dear;
So were the Cretans - from which I infer
That beef and battle both were owing her . . .
(Section CLVI)

Extract from The Extended Circle by Jon Wynne-Tyson, © 1975:
From Don Juan
And angling , too, that solitary vice,
Whatever Izaak Walton sings or says:
The quaint, old, cruel coxcomb, in his gullet
Should have a hook, and a small trout to pull it.
Bryon comments in his Notes: This sentimental savage, whom it is a mode to quote (amongst the novelists) to show their sympathy for innocent sports and old songs, teaches how to sew up frogs, and break their legs by way of experiment, in addition to the art of angling, the cruelest, the coldest, and the stupidest of pretended sports.
Extract from Shelley by Edward Blunden 1946:
[in Ravenna, Italy 1818] Talk on these and other topics went on until six in the morning, but then in Byron's house even Shelley resigned himself to getting up at midday. Byron breakfasted in the afternoon, they talked or read till six, went for a ride through the pine forests, dined at eight and so to talk again. One of Byron's characteristics could not have been missed by any visitor. Madame Guiccioli found it very comical, and would tell a good story about it. For Michaelmas Day Byron regularly resolved to have a roast goose, and bought one; but by the time he had fattened it for a month the goose and he were such friends that the bird did not come to the table, and another was bought. At last he possesed four pet geese which travelled in cages under his carriage. Shelley's catalogue of Byron's zoo ("besides servants"), omitting geese, includes "ten horses, eight enormous dogs, three monkeys, five cats, an eagle, a crow and a falcon; and all these except the horses, walk about the house, which every now and then resounds with their unarbitrated quarrels, as if they were masters of it." Shelley supposed that this list was complete, but as he departed "met on the grand staircase five peacocks, two guinea hens, and an Egyptian crane. I wonder who all these animals were before they were changed into these shapes."