1747 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Joseph Spence

Thomas Gray to Horace Walpole, February 1747; Poems of Mr. Gray, ed. Mason (1775) 183.



I remember to have read Mr. Spence's pretty book [Polymetis, evidently in manuscript]; though (as he then had not been at Rome for the last time) it must have increased greatly since that in bulk. If you ask me what I read, I protest I do not recollect one syllable; but only in general, that they were the best bred sort of men in the world, just the kind of "frinds" one would wish to meet in a fine summer's evening, if one wished to meet any at all. The heads and tails of the dialogues, published separate in 16mo, would make the sweetest reading in "natiur" for young gentlemen of family and fortune, that are learning to dance.