Skip main navigation

Thomas Gray to Horace Walpole, [15 July 1736]

Back to Letters page

Dear Sr

I sympathize with you in the Sufferings, which you foresee are coming upon you; we are both at present, I imagine, in no very agreeable situation; for my own part I am under the misfortune of having nothing to do, but it is a misfortune, which, thank my Stars, I can pretty well bear; You are in a Confusion of Wine & Bawdy & Hunting & Tobacco; & heaven be praised, you too can pretty well bear it; while our evils are no more, I believe we sha'nt much repine; I imagine however you'll rather chuse to converse with the living Dead, that adorn the Walls of your Apartments, than with the Dead living, that deck the middles of them, & prefer a picture of Still-life to the realities of a noisy one; &, as I guess, will learn to imitate them, and for an hour or two at noon, will stick yourself up as formal, as if you had been fixed in your Frame for these hundred years with an upright Pink in one hand, & a great Seal-ring in the other: I know nothing, but that the Judges were all blown up yesterday in Westminster-hall by some unlucky boy, that had affixed a parcel of Squibs & Crackers to several Acts of parliament, whose ruins were scatter'd about the hall with a great noise & displosion; it set the Ld Chancellour a laughing, & frighted every body else out of their senses, and Ld Hardwick order'd the grand Jury to represent it as a libel; yes! I know besides, that I shall be always yours,

Letter ID: letters.0028 (Source: TEI/XML)


Writer: Gray, Thomas, 1716-1771
Writer's age: 19
Addressee: Walpole, Horace, 1717-1797
Addressee's age: 18


Date of composition: [15 July 1736]
Calendar: Julian


Place of composition: [London, United Kingdom]


Language: English
Incipit: I sympathize with you in the Sufferings, which you forsee...
Mentioned: Houghton

Holding Institution

GBR/1058/GRA/3/4/22, College Library, Pembroke College, Cambridge , Cambridge, UK <>
Availability: The original letter is extant and usually available for academic research purposes

Print Versions

  • The Poems of Mr. Gray. To which are prefixed Memoirs of his Life and Writings by W[illiam]. Mason. York: printed by A. Ward; and sold by J. Dodsley, London; and J. Todd, York, 1775, letter x, section i, 25-26
  • The Works of Thomas Gray, 2 vols. Ed. by Thomas James Mathias. London: William Bulmer, 1814, section I, letter X, vol. i, 155
  • The Works of Thomas Gray, 2 vols. Ed. by John Mitford. London: J. Mawman, 1816, section I, letter X, vol. ii, 20-21
  • The Letters of Thomas Gray, 2 vols. in one. London: J. Sharpe, 1819, letter X, vol. i, 22-23
  • The Works of Thomas Gray, 5 vols. Ed. by John Mitford. London: W. Pickering, 1835-1843, section I, letter X, vol. ii, 22-24
  • The Letters of Thomas Gray, including the correspondence of Gray and Mason, 3 vols. Ed. by Duncan C. Tovey. London: George Bell and Sons, 1900-12, letter no. VIII, vol. i, 9
  • The Correspondence of Gray, Walpole, West and Ashton (1734-1771), 2 vols. Chronologically arranged and edited with introduction, notes, and index by Paget Toynbee. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1915, letter no. 37, vol. i, 89-90
  • The Yale Edition of Horace Walpole's Correspondence. Ed. by W. S. Lewis. New Haven, Conn.: Yale UP; London: Oxford UP, 1937-83, vols. 13/14: Horace Walpole's Correspondence with Thomas Gray, Richard West and Thomas Ashton i, 1734-42, Horace Walpole's Correspondence with Thomas Gray ii, 1745-71, ed. by W. S. Lewis, George L. Lam and Charles H. Bennett, 1948, vol. i, 103-104
  • Correspondence of Thomas Gray, 3 vols. Ed. by the late Paget Toynbee and Leonard Whibley, with corrections and additions by H. W. Starr. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1971 [1st ed. 1935], letter no. 25, vol. i, 45-46