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from Pembroke College, Cambridge

"The single most important repository of Gray's autograph verse and prose is his Commonplace Book, bound in three large volumes.  Begun c1736, the Book was used more or less continuously until about 1761 and Gray added a few notes up to the end of his life.  Until the Book is published in full it will be difficult to do it justice, for its breadth and depth are considerable."
Margaret M Smith, Index of English Literary Manuscripts, Vol III, 1700-1800, Part 2.

This projects makes available:

  • The three substantial volumes that make up Gray's autograph Commonplace Book, c1736-1761, together with a detailed, online listing of its contents.
  • Letters to Horace Walpole and numerous individual manuscript poems.
  • Annotated copies of books from Gray's own library, including MacPherson's Fragments of Ancient Poetry, Gesner's Historiae animalium, Pennant's British Zoology, Rovillius's Historia generalis plantarum, Ray's Selected Remains of the Learned John Ray, and Bergeron's Voyages to Asia.

Taken together, these sources allow for a thorough examination of Gray as a poet and scholar, and will be of great interest to all those interested in 18th century poetry, classical literature, and natural history.

Digital Guide
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