Thomas Gray to John Chute, [25 October 1743 or 1744]
What do You chuse I should think of a whole Year's Silence? have you absolutely forgot me, or do you not reflect, that it is from yourself alone I can have any Information concerning You? I do not find myself inclined to forget you: the same Regard for your Person, the same Desire of seeing you again I felt when we parted still continues with me as fresh as ever. don't wonder then if in spite of Appearances I try to flatter myself with the Hopes of finding Sentiments something of the same kind however buried in some dark Corner of your Heart, & perhaps more than half extinguish'd by long Absence, & various Cares of a different Nature. I will not alarm your Indolence with a long Letter. my Demands are only three, & may be answer'd in as many Words. how You do? where You are? & When You return? if you chuse to add anything further it will be a Work of Superer – I will not write so long a Word entire, least I fatigue your Delicacy, & you may think it incumbent on you to answer it by another of equal Dimensions. You believe me, I hope, with great Sincerity Yours
PS: For ought I know You may be in England. my very true Compliments (not such as People make to one another) wait upon Mr Whithed. he will be the most travel'd Gentleman in Hampshire.
Chute of The Vyne, Sherborne St John, The Vyne , Sherborne St John, UK <http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/vyne/>
[See this record from the Hampshire Record Office]
- The Works of Thomas Gray, 5 vols. Ed. by John Mitford. London: W. Pickering, 1835-1843, section IV, letter VII, vol. ii, 188-189
- 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. LIX, vol. i, 116-117
- 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. 113, vol. i, 219