Gray was a poet, editor, translator, and 1890s dandy figure, regarded by many as the model for Oscar Wilde’s Dorian Gray. He is best remembered for his first verse collection,


(1893), which established him as an accomplished translator and poet in the French


tradition. By 1895, “with a promising career behind him”, according to the poet Theodore Wratislaw (Wratislaw 1893: 328), he dissociated himself from Wilde’s decadent circle and devoted himself to Catholicism and writing spiritual verse, moving permanently to Edinburgh in 1901, where he became rector of the parish of St Patrick’s.

John Henry Gray was born in Bethnal Green, London, on 10 March 1866, the eldest of nine children. He came from a working-class Nonconformist family of Scottish descent. His

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Citation: Desmarais, Jane. "John Gray". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 20 September 2014 [, accessed 03 March 2024.]

1848 John Gray 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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