Biography of Horace (Horatio) Walpole 1717-1797

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Horace (or Horatio) Walpole was born in London during 1717. He became the fourth Earl of Oxford and an English writer.

Horaces' mother died in 1737, when he was twenty years old. This was a grave disappointment to him since he was deeply attached to her. Only six months later his father remarried to Maria Skerret. Maria Skerret was his father?s mistress. Horace studied at Eton College and the University of Cambridge. After completing his education his friend, an English poet, Thomas Gray and him traveled in France and Italy. At Reggio (Italy) he and Gray had argued and quarreled. They eventually parted each other. The exact reasons for this parting are unknown yet it may possible be because of Walpoles' ?sociable and less studious notions of entertainment.

During 1741 Horace spent most of his time in his father?s new home at Houghton. He believed that the country life was dull therefore was led to improve it by gathering a collection of paintings.

That same year (1741) Horace Walpole joined Parliament. However, his political career was not extensive. He only received limited government posts, even though he was MP for Callington, Castle Rising and Lynn during 1741-1767. He managed to attain these posts because of his father, who at the time was prime minister (Sir Robert Walpole). Horace remained in the parliament until his retirement in seventeen-sixty-eight. Horaces' father died in 1745. For the duration of him and his friend Thomas Gray had began to reconcile.

In 1748 he purchased a villa in Twickenham (suburb near London), Strawberry Hill. At this time Walpoles' estate/villa (Strawberry Hill) is used as a showplace because of it library, collections of art and curios. In 1748 he had three poems published in "Dodsley's Collection." Later in 1757 he acquired a printing press in his...