1788 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Horace Walpole

Anonymous, in Catalogue of five hundred Celebrated Authors (1788).



The youngest son of the celebrated Robert Walpole earl of Oxford, and usher of the receipt of his majesty's Exchequer. This gentleman devoted himself to the pursuits of retirement and literature, and now resides in advanced age at Twickenham in the county of Middlesex. He published in 1758 a Catalogue of Royal and Noble Authors in Great Britain in two volumes duodecimo; in 1764 a Catalogue of Engravers; and the Castle of Otranto, a Historical Romance, in duodecimo; in 1768 Historical Doubts respecting the Character and Reign of King Richard the Third; and in 1773 the two first numbers of Miscellaneou Antiquities. Mr. Walpole also published at his press at Strawberry Hill, an edition of the Memoires de Comte de Grammont; and the Anecdotes of Painting in England, written by Mr. George Vertue, in four volumes quarto; and contributed some of the most admired papers to a periodical publication, intitled the World. The last performance of Mr. Walpole is the Mysterious Mother, a tragedy never performed, nor indeed published, though some copies have been made at the author's private press. He is a writer of considerable elegance, ingenuity and invention. In the affair of Chatterton he was exposed to some blame, without perhaps having greatly deserved it, upon account of his not having patronized that unfortunate young man. But it must perhaps be acknowledged, that an acute and refined sensibility is not the strong side of Mr. Walpole's character.