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Thomas Gray to Horace Walpole, [7 July 1746]

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My dear Sr

I could make You abundance of Excuses, as indeed I have Reason: but they would be bad & false ones, such as my Respect for you will not permit me to use. attribute then this long Interval of Silence to whatever Motive you please besides; only don't imagine it Neglect, or Want of Sensibility to the many Expressions of Kindness you bestow'd upon me in your last Letter. my Sentiments are nothing alter'd since that Time, however tardy I may have been in telling you so: I well remember how little you love Letters, where all the Materials are drawn out of oneself; yet such mine must have been from a Place, where nothing ever happens but Trifles, that it would be mere Impertinence to think of entertaining You with. however I am apt to suspect you have been a little angry, for Dr Middleton tho' often with you in Town, did not bring me the least Compliment to shew you remember'd me. do you mean to continue so, or shall You see me the less willingly next week, when I mean to call at your Door some Morning? I hope you are still in Town.

believe me Dr Sr very sincerely Yours
Letter ID: letters.0137 (Source: TEI/XML)


Writer: Gray, Thomas, 1716-1771
Writer's age: 29
Addressee: Walpole, Horace, 1717-1797
Addressee's age: 28


Date of composition: [7 July 1746]
Date (on letter): July 7
Calendar: Julian


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


Language: English
Incipit: I could make You abundance of Excuses, as indeed I have Reason:...

Holding Institution

The Library, Haverford College , Haverford, PA, USA <>
Availability: The original letter is extant, but there is no further information about its availability

Print Versions

  • 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, fragment, letter no. LXV, vol. i, 129
  • 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. 156, vol. ii, 54
  • 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. ii, 5
  • 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. 119, vol. i, 231