Sutton was Sterne's residence for twenty uneventful years.
Stevenson's various occasional sallies in verse and prose - his Fables for Grown Gentlemen (1761-1770), his Crazy Tales (1762), and his numerous skits at the political opponents of Wilkes, among whose "macaronies" he numbered himself - were collected after his death, and it is impossible to read them without being struck with their close family resemblance in spirit and turn of thought to Sterne's work, inferior as they are in literary genius.
For the last eight years of his life after this sudden leap out of obscurity we have a faithful record of Sterne's feelings and movements in letters to various persons, published in 1 775 by his sole child and daughter, Lydia Sterne de Medalle, and in the Letters from Yorick to Eliza (1766-1767), also published in 1775.
Sterne's clerical character was far from being universally injured by his indecorous freaks as a humorist: Lord Fauconberg presented the author of Tristram Shandy with the perpetual curacy of Coxwold.
The Sentimental Journey through France and Italy was intended to be a long work: the plan admitted of any length that the author chose, but, after seeing the first two volumes through the press in the early months of 1768, Sterne's strength failed him, and he died in his lodgings at 41 Old Bond Street on the 18th of March, three weeks after the publication.
Sterne's character defies analysis in brief space.
But the reader who cares to have an opinion about Sterne should hesitate till he has read and re-read in various moods considerable portions of Sterne's own writing.
Dr Ferriar, in his Illustrations of Sterne (published in 1798), pointed out several unacknowledged plagiarisms from Rabelais, Burton and others; but it is only fair to the critic to say that he was fully aware that they were only plagiarisms of material, and do not detract in the slightest from Sterne's reputation as one of the greatest of literary artists.
Paul Stapfer (1870, 2nd ed., 1882); and many fresh particulars as to Sterne's relations with his wife and daughter, and also with the lady known as "Eliza" (Mrs Elizabeth Draper), are collected in Mr Sidney Lee's article in the Did.
Sterne's original journal to Mrs Draper ("The Bramine's Journal"), after she had gone back to India, and extending from the 13th of April to the 4th of August 1767, is now in the department of MSS., British Museum (addit.
A convenient edition of Sterne's works, edited by Professor George Saintsbury, was issued in six volumes in 1894.