1808 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Richard Graves

Samuel Egerton Brydges, "Rev. Richard Graves" Censura Literaria 6 (1808) 218-19.



This amiable, well-read, and lively old man, who died at the age of 90, at the close of 1804, was known to all the frequenters of Bath, near which he resided at his rectory of Claverton, for more than half a century. He was the friend and correspondent of Shenstone; and author of a variety of spirited and amusing publications; of which his novel, entitled The Spiritual Quixote, bids fairest for permanent fame. He was born at Mickleton in Gloucestershire, May 4, 1715, being second son of Richard Graves, Esq. of that place. At the age of sixteen he went to Pembroke College, Oxford, where his acquaintance with Shenstone commenced. In 1736 he was elected Fellow of All-Souls' College; and in 1740 took orders. In 1750 he was presented to the rectory of Claverton, to which was added the living at Kilmersdon. His first publication was The Festoon, or a Collection of Epigrams, with an Essay on that species of composition; and afterwards published Two Volumes of Poems under the title of Euphrosyne, 1780. His Spiritual Quixote came out in 1772. His last publication was The Invalid, with the obvious means of enjoying Life by a Nonagenarian. In 1788 he published Recollections of some particulars in the Life of Shenstone. His poems were rather bagatelles, than serious effusions of the Muse. It was amusing to see him on the verge of ninety, walking to Bath with the briskness of youth.

For a father list of his publications, see Gent. Mag. Vol. lxxiv. p. 1166.