1757 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Lewis Theobald

William Warburton to Richard Hurd, 12 January 1757; in Letters of a Late eminent Prelate (1808) 164.



You will always do well to take what copies of any papers I send you, you see proper. Those villains, if any such there be, who upbraid me with my acquaintance and correspondence with the gentlemen of the Dunciad, know I at the same time proclaimed it to the world in Tibbald's edition of Shakespear, in Mr. P.'s life time. — Till his letters were published I had as indifferent an opinion of his morals as they pretended to have. Mr. P. knew this, and had the justice to own to me that I fairly followed appearances, when I thought well of them, and ill of him. He owned indeed that on reading that edition, he was sorry to find a man of genius got amongst them, for he told me he was greatly struck with my notes. This conversation happened to pass in company, on one of them saying, they wondered I would give any thing to such a fellow as Tibbald: Mr. P. said immediately, there was no wonder at all: I took him for an honest man as he had done, and on that footing had visited him — and then followed what I relate above. This was the only time the subject ever came upon the tapis. For he was too delicate to mention any thing of it to me alone.