Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Please note, if you cannot find the answer to your question here, please do not hesitate to e-mail for further assistance.
- What is the Thomas Gray Archive?
- What is the Archive's purpose?
- Who directs the Archive?
- Where do I start?
- Will you help me with my homework or research?
- Can you estimate the value of a Gray book I own?
- How do I cite material from the Archive?
1. What is the Thomas Gray Archive?
The Thomas Gray Archive is a collaborative digital archive for the study of the life and work of eighteenth-century poet, letter-writer, and scholar Thomas Gray (1716-1771). It is intended as a learning, teaching, and research tool for Gray studies. It aims at contributing to Gray scholarship by applying good practice in the creation and presentation of its primary texts and secondary materials. The Thomas Gray Archive is not a physical archive in the sense the term is used by the professional archiving community, it exists as an educational online resource, solely intended for teaching, research, and study (more information).
2. What is the Archive's purpose?
The Archive is committed to providing scholars, teachers, and students of Gray's works with as large and as reliable a corpus of the works and secondary materials as possible, drawing on the resources of libraries, archives, and collections from around the world. It is developing an online environment that is easy-to-use, standards-based, and freely accessible. The Archive will provide users with assistance and guidance on the use of the Website and its resources.
3. Who directs the Archive?
The Thomas Gray Archive was co-founded by Reimer Eck (Associate Director, Göttingen State and University Library) and Alexander Huber who continues as its editor. Please see the contact information on how to get in touch.
4. Where do I start?
This largely depends on the kind of information you are looking for. If you want to find out about Gray's poetry, letters, or prose works, need to analyse a poem, or conduct research on particular topics in Gray's works, the Texts section is the place to start. It offers complete lists of titles and first lines to access the poems, a calendar of Gray's letters, including some digitised images of manuscripts, selected prose works, and a digital library of primary sources. On the other hand, if you need background information, e.g. about Gray's life, but also about Gray scholarship, archival resources, and related Websites, the Resources section is the best place to start. It offers a finding aid to manuscripts, a concordance, a criticism section, a biographical sketch, a chronology of Gray's life and works, a glossary of names and terms, as well as a Gray bibliography, a picture gallery, and related links. All of these sections are heavily cross-linked, so that there is really more than one way of discovering the resources in the Archive. If all else fails, you can always search the Archive's resources.
5. Will you help me with my homework or research?
We are not a research service and cannot answer specific questions or find materials for you. Nor can we answer questions relating to homework topics. We are, however, committed to assisting you in using the Archive and finding information located in its resources. Please consider the select bibliography of print materials and the list of related Web sites as additional starting points for research or homework.
6. Can you estimate the value of a Gray book I own?
Sorry, but we cannot provide this kind of service. You might try contacting local antiquarian booksellers specializing in English literature or an appraiser at the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers for an estimate of the book. You could also try to contact a subject librarian at a research or university library if you want to donate a rare or out-of-print book.
7. How do I cite material from the Archive?
If you want to reference the Archive as a source for your work, please do include the Archive's full title, its editor, its URL, and the date you accessed it. When citing the Archive as a whole, please use this example (MLA style):
Huber, Alexander, ed. Thomas Gray Archive. Thomas Gray Archive, 08 Feb 2016. Web. 09 Feb 2016. <http://www.thomasgray.org/>.