Johnson continued to look for a position at a Lichfield school. After being turned down for a job at Ashbourne, he spent time with his friend Edmund Hector, who was living in the home of the publisher Thomas Warren . At the time, Warren was starting his Birmingham Journal , and he enlisted Johnson's help.  This connection with Warren grew, and Johnson proposed a translation of Jerónimo Lobo 's account of the Abyssinians .  Johnson read Abbé Joachim Le Grand's French translations, and thought that a shorter version might be "useful and profitable".  Instead of writing the work himself, he dictated to Hector, who then took the copy to the printer and made any corrections. Johnson's A Voyage to Abyssinia was published a year later.  He returned to Lichfield in February 1734, and began an annotated edition of Poliziano 's Latin poems, along with a history of Latin poetry from Petrarch to Poliziano; a Proposal was soon printed, but a lack of funds halted the project. 
E arly admirers of Edward Thomas's poetry included Walter de la Mare and Ivor Gurney, and leading contemporary poets such as Ted Hughes, RS Thomas and Jeremy Hooker have acknowledged their debt to him. The literary scholar FR Leavis singled him out as 'an original poet of rare quality' and Andrew Motion, the Poet Laureate, has nominated 'Old Man' by Edward Thomas as his favourite poem 'because it so brilliantly proves, as do all his poems, that you can speak softly and yet let your voice carry a long way'. Edward Thomas is commemorated in Poets' Corner in Westminster Abbey, by pictorial windows in two parish churches, and by a sarsen boulder memorial on the hillside above Steep in Hampshire.
Two of his last publications embodied the critical sentiments of his final years; The Living Principle: ‘English’ as a Discipline of Thought (1975), and Thought, Words and Creativity: Art and Thought in Lawrence (1976). Although these later works have been sometimes called "philosophy", it has been argued that there is no abstract or theoretical context to justify such a description. In discussing the nature of language and value, Leavis implicitly treats the sceptical questioning that philosophical reflection starts from as an irrelevance from his standpoint as a literary critic - a position set out in his famous early exchange with René Wellek (reprinted in 'The Common Pursuit').