The son of a Yorkshire clergyman, William Mason studied at Hull before entering St. John's College Cambridge as a pensioner (B.A. 1746, M.A. from Pembroke 1749, Fellow 1747-54). In Isis (1748) he attacked Tory Oxford, provoking an answer by Thomas Warton. Mason was Rector of Aston in Yorkshire (1754-97), prebendary of York (1756-62), chaplain to the King (1757-60) and canon of York (1762-97). He was Gray's literary executor and the biographer of William Whitehead. In 1778 Mason was one of those responsible for restoring Spenser's monument in Westminster Abbey.
1744Il Bellicoso. MDCCXLIV.
1744Musaeus: a Monody to the Memory of Mr. Pope.
1748Isis. An Elegy.
1772The English Garden, a Poem.
1775Memoirs of Thomas Gray.
1779Ode to the Naval Officers of Great Britain.
1782An Archaeological Epistle.
1782Preface to An Archaeological Epistle.
1787Elegy written in a Church-Yard in South Wales, 1787.
1788Memoirs of the Life and Writings of Mr. William Whitehead.
Musaeus: a monody to the memory of Pope, in imitation of Lycidas. 1747.
Isis: an elegy. 1749.
Ode performed in the senate house at Cambridge ... at the installation of ... Thomas Holles, duke of Newcastle, chancellor. 1749.
Elfrida: a dramatic poem. 1752.
Caractacus: a dramatic poem. 1759.
Poems. 1764; 1771; 1773; 1774.
A supplement to Watts' psalms and hymns. 1769.
The English garden, a poem. 1772, 1781; 1847.
A catalogue of antiquities. 1773.
An heroic epistle to Sir William Chambers. 1773.
An heroic postscript to the public. 1774.
Poems. 2 vols, 1774; 1779; 3 vols, 1796-97.
The poems of Gray. To which are prefixed memoirs of his life and writings by William Mason. 1775.
Ode to Mr. Pinchbeck upon his newly invented patent candle-snuffers. 1776.
An epistle to Dr Shebbeare, An ode to Sir Fletcher Norton in imitation of Horace. 1777.
Animadversions on the present government of the York Lunatic asylum. 1778.
Ode to the naval officers of Great Britain. 1779.
Ode to Eliza Ryves. 1780.
An archeological epistle to the reverend and worshipful Jeremiah Miles D.D. 1782.
A copious collection of portions of the Psalms [with an essay by Mason]. 1782.
The dean and the 'squire: a political eclogue dedicated to Jenyns. 1782.
King Stephens's watch: a tale founded on fact. 1782.
Ode to the Honourable William Pitt. 1782.
The art of painting of du Fresnoy ... with annotations by Reynolds. 1783.
Animadversions on the present government of the York lunatic assylum. 1788.
An occasional discourse ... on the subject of the African slave trade. 1788.
Secular ode in commemoration of the Glorious Revolution. 1788.
Essays on English church music. 1795.
School for satire; or a collection of modern satirical poems. 1802.
Poetical works. 1805.
Sappho: a lyrical drama with Italian translation by Thomas James Mathias. 1809.
Works. 4 vols, 1811.
Anecdotes of Reynolds. 1859.
Correspondence of Mason ... and Walpole. 1851.
The correspondence of Thomas Gray and William Mason, ed. John Mitford. 1853.
Anecdotes of Reynolds. 1859.
Satirical poems published anonymously by W. M., with notes by Horace Walpole, ed. Paget Toynbee. 1926.
Correspondence of Richard Hurd and William Mason, ed. E. H. Pearce and L. Whibley. 1932.