The Collected Letters, Volume 11


TC TO JOHN FORSTER ; 14 September 1839; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18390914-TC-JF-01; CL 11: 185-186


Chelsea, 14th Septr, 1839—

My dear Sir,

Your Letter dated 1st July was put into my hands precisely three-and-twenty hours ago! It must have been delivered at this door just about the moment of our departure; a moment sooner, we should have got hold of it at once; a moment later, it would have fallen into the course prescribed for subsequent Letters, and been forwarded to us in a day or two. As it was, the unfortunate House-Agent, at that instant on the premises, laid hold of it, and nothing doubting kept it safe and silent by him till, yesterday morning, he had ascertained our return! The solemnity with which this unfortunate functionary presented the one small note, with the air of a man who had done his duty and made sure of thanks, was a thing to look at. With all one's vexation, one could not but explode into laughter.

We are now here at anchor; awaiting what gyration of yours will be kind enough to lead you hither. Any day or week, the sooner the better, we shall be glad to see your face again.

The Cromwell is yet hidden from me; I have been far remote from Books. The dim prophecy, which I interpret to mean that I shall soon see it withal, ought to fulfill itself with the least possible delay.1

I am correcting the Translation of Goethe's Meister for a new edition; the Printers already busy on it. The American Miscellanies are come.

If you write to Landor pray remember me very kindly to him.2 I had hoped to return hither by Bristol, Bath and his domicile; but it went to nothing as so much else does.

Believe me always, / Yours most truly / T. Carlyle