He published four volumes of sonnets which have been highly praised.
A MS. collection of seventy-two sonnets, entitled The Tarantula of Love, and a translation (1587) from the Italian of the Triumphs of Petrarke are preserved in the library of the university of Edinburgh, in the collection bequeathed by his nephew, William Drummond.
In 1618 he wrote two cycles of religious sonnets, La Corona and the Holy Sonnets, the latter not printed in complete form until by Mr Gosse in 1899.
Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote sonnets to " the large-brained woman and large-hearted man, self-named George Sand."
Among them are some satirical sonnets describing Roman manners, and the later ones written after his return to Paris are often appeals for patronage.