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Although Pope's poem provided the main inspiration, and was frequently mentioned by the authors in their prefaces, there was always Hughes' volume with its historical account in the background.
In its later editions the dependency between the two was further underlined by the inclusion first of Pope's poem (from 1755) and then some of the principal responses in following editions.
Eloisa to Abelard is a verse epistle by Alexander Pope that was published in 1717 and based on a well-known Mediaeval story.
Itself an imitation of a Latin poetic genre, its immediate fame resulted in a large number of English imitations throughout the rest of the century and other poems more loosely based on its themes thereafter.
Artistic depictions of the poem’s themes were often reproduced as prints illustrating the poem; there were also paintings in France of the women readers of the amorous correspondence between the lovers.
Pope's poem was published in 1717 in a small volume titled The Works of Mr Alexander Pope.
Thus Richard Barford ends his poem with a similar sentiment to Pope's, that true lovers will express their kinship with Eloisa and Abelard in similar words: And the third and fourth lines of St-John Seymour's opening, "If cold my blood, my pulse inactive grown, I am indeed allied to stupid stone", is heavily dependent on Pope's "Tho’ cold like you, unmoved and silent grown, I have not yet forgot myself to stone" (lines 23-4).
The memory of it turns the landscape gloomy "and breathes a browner horror on the woods" (line 170).
Imitation of lines from Pope's epistle in this context adds a new level of subtlety.
A later work, Eloisa en deshabille, being a new version of that lady's celebrated epistle to Abelard (1780), In this a burlesque and witty version matched Pope's original line for line and in later editions appeared opposite his poem.
Both then led comparatively successful monastic careers.
Years later, Abelard completed the Historia Calamitatum (History of misfortunes), cast as a letter of consolation to a friend.