Skip main navigation

Thomas Gray to Horace Walpole, [16 January 1737]

Back to Letters page

The Honble Horace Walpole Esq,
at the Treasury,

[           ]

I have a tast for the works of Cramputius, & his Scraps; if you can fill twelve baskets with such fragments, I have a stomach for 'em all: one should have had a passion for Simplicia oneself, if one had lived in those days; she is so open & unreserved in her behaviour: the pleasure of having a mistress, that when one made her a compliment, & call'd her Spider; should only cry, ehe! I don't doubt but Portia behaved just s[o] when Brutus made love to her; this was reckon'd a Scene of great Gallantry I suppose at that time, & Q: Crassus Tubero as pretty a fellow with the Women, as the Genie Jonquil: I don't know, whither you have forgot Cambridge, or not; it's plain, you chuse, only to keep it in mind; it seems to be at this time of year, that the humour usually takes you to tell us stories about your coming, but however I would rather be deceived, than hear nothing at all of it; so say something of it pray; every body in Cambridge knows better than I; who remain

yours to command

For god'sake write often, if it be but two Syllables

[Use arrow keys to navigate]
Letter ID: letters.0039 (Source: TEI/XML)


Writer: Gray, Thomas, 1716-1771
Writer's age: 20
Addressee: Walpole, Horace, 1717-1797
Addressee's age: 19


Date of composition: [16 January 1737]
Date (on letter): [Jan 16]
Calendar: Julian


Place of composition: [Cambridge, United Kingdom]
Address (on letter): [Cambridge]
Place of addressee: [London, United Kingdom]

Physical description

Addressed: To / The Honble Horace Walpole Esq, / at the Treasury, / Westminster (postmark: CAMBRIDGE 17 1A)


Language: English
Incipit: I have a tast for the works of Cramputius, & his Scraps;...
Mentioned: Crébillon fils

Holding Institution

GBR/1058/GRA/3/4/18, College Library, Pembroke College, Cambridge , Cambridge, UK <>
Availability: The original letter is extant and usually available for academic research purposes

Print Versions

  • 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. 24, vol. i, 59-60
  • 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, 125-126
  • 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. 36, vol. i, 60