Letter is signed "Gabriel C. Rossetti," a form of his name which he stopped using shortly afterwards.
Rossetti writes to introduce himself, his poetry and translations to Hunt. The first part of the letter concerns Hunt's influence upon Rossetti and Rossetti's response to Hunt's writing -- he tells him he has "read more and more; and having read once; I have read again." He tells Hunt that his work has "delighted me, strengthened me, instructed me: you do so still." The letter also concerns Rossetti's ambitions as a painter and writer: "The study to which I have devoted myself is that of painting; it has been my choice since childhood. Lately, however, my mind has been directed also toward another object whose attainment, I confess, has sometimes interfered with my steadier purpose; this object is the power of expressing my thoughts in poetry." Rossetti submits his Italian translations to Hunt for his opinion, and reports his ambitions to translate the lyrical poems of Dante into English. Rossetti considers Hunt "the first of Italian translators" and "that a translator, to be successful, must have in himself something at least of the imaginative faculty."