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Thomas Gray to William Mason, 2 December 1769

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Dear Sr

I am afraid something is the matter with you, that I hear nothing from you, since I pass'd two days with you in your absence. I am not in Ireland, as you perhaps might imagine by this natural sentence: but shall be as glad to hear from you, as if I were.

A week ago I saw something in the Newspaper sign'd An Enemy to brick-walls in improper places. while I was studying how (for brevity's sake) to translate this into Greek, Mr Brown did it in one word, Μασονίδης. I hope, it is not that complaint, hard (I must own) to digest, that sticks in your stomach, & makes you thus silent.

I am sorry to tell you, that I hear a very bad account of Dr Hurd: he was taken very ill at Thurcaston, & obliged with difficulty to be carried in a chaise to Leicester. he remained there confined some time, before he could be convey'd on to London. as they do not mention, what his malady is, I am much afraid, it is a return of ye same disorder that he had last year in Town.

I am going thither for a few days myself, & shall soon be able to tell you more of him.

Wyatt is return'd hither very calm, but melancholy, & looking dreadfully pale: he thinks of orders, I am told.

Adieu! I am ever
T G:
Letter ID: letters.0570 (Source: TEI/XML)


Writer: Gray, Thomas, 1716-1771
Writer's age: 53
Addressee: Mason, William, 1724-1797
Addressee's age: 45


Date of composition: 2 December 1769
Date (on letter): Dec: 2. 1769
Calendar: Gregorian


Place of composition: Cambridge, United Kingdom
Address (on letter): Pemb: Coll:


Language: English
Incipit: I am afraid something is the matter with you, that I hear nothing from you,...
Mentioned: Hurd, Dr. Richard
Hurd, Richard, 1720-1808

Holding Institution

Henry W. And Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature, Humanities and Social Sciences Library, New York Public Library , New York, NY, USA <>
Availability: The original letter is extant and usually available for academic research purposes

Print Versions

  • The Correspondence of Thomas Gray and William Mason, with Letters to the Rev. James Brown, D.D. Ed. by the Rev. John Mitford. London: Richard Bentley, 1853, letter CXXVIII, 434-435
  • 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. CCCLIII, vol. iii, 243-244
  • 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. 509, vol. iii, 1091