Queering Horace Walpole
Abstract

What does it mean to talk about sexuality in the eighteenth century? What can historians of sexuality accomplish without the keyhole testimonies that prove our subjects had sex with members of their own gender? In this essay, George Haggerty considers the case of Horace Walpole. He looks at Walpole's friendships, his style and effeminacy, his wit and taste, his politics and public life, as a way of understanding what it is possible to say about Horace Walpole the man. Rather than pinning Walpole down with one identity or another, we should let the letters speak for themselves.