Four Gothic Novels

By Horace Walpole; William Beckford et al. | Go to book overview
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1717 24 September, born in Arlington Street, London, the third surviving son of Sir Robert Walpole and Catherine Shorter
1727-34 Eton
1735-9 King's College, Cambridge
1737 Lady Walpole dies; shortly afterwards Sir Robert marries his mistress, Maria Skerrett, who dies 1738
1739-41 Takes Thomas Gray, his intimate friend at Eton and Cambridge, on the Grand Tour to France and Italy
1741 Elected to Parliament for a family borough in Cornwall while still abroad. His places in the Exchequer, secured for him by his father, rise in time to as much as £5,000 a year
1742 Sir Robert resigns as Prime Minister and is created Earl of Orford; his last three years are spent chiefly at Houghton, his house in Norfolk
1747 Horace Walpole's first book, Aedes Walpolianae, an account of the pictures at Houghton, published
1747 Leases Strawberry Hill, Twickenham
1749 Buys Strawberry Hill and begins to remodel it in the Gothic manner
1751 Begins writing his Memoirs, which he continues to 1791
1755 First attack of gout, to which he became a martyr
1757 Erects a private printing press at Strawberry Hill, where he brings out books and ephemera until 1789. These include his own Catalogue of Royal and Noble Authors, 2 vols., 1758, Anecdotes of Painting in England, 5 vols., 1762-80, and The Mysterious Mother (a tragedy), 1768
1764 24 December, The Castle of Otranto published
1768 Mistoric Doubts on the Life and Reign of King Richard the Third published; retires from Parliament
1777 Unfairly charged with contributing to Chatterton's death
1791 5 December, succeeds his nephew as 4th Earl of Orford
1797 Dies, unmarried, at his home in Berkeley Square in his eightieth year

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Four Gothic Novels


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