The Collected Letters, Volume 12


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE ; 1 July 1840; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18400701-TC-JAC-01; CL 12: 179-181


Chelsea, 1 july, 1840—

My dear Brother,

Your Miscellany Book is off to Edinburgh, addressed according to your order for Glen at Dunlop's in Millar [sic] Street Glasgow.1 The two pairs of trowsers were discovered where you indicated, at least the two we thought you must mean; and sent along with the Book. Fraser intimates this morning that they are off; probably they will be in Glasgow by the time this reaches you. I hope no delay will occur; if any do occur, Glen had better apply to Fraser's Publisher in Edinburgh,—whose name I think is Menzies, but whom any Glasgow Book-seller*2 will be able to give him the address of. There is a Fraserian Parcel monthly direct for Glasgow; but that goes by land all the way, Fraser unwilling to load it beyond necessity; and indeed at any rate owing to miscalculation (on Fraser's own part, or his man's) the trowsers proved to be too late for having gone by that. I hope all will come safely and be of use to you.— Are you returned from the Hebrides? Your solitude among those ancient mountains, by the Ocean strand there, with no society but your Patient's, must be deep! As distasteful almost, as this overcrowded ever-bustling half-maddening way of life is to me! One cannot help his way of life at all times. I am very sick of living here; but know not, on the whole, whither I could hopefully turn to make myself much better. My Horse, at 5 guineas a month, begins to seem to me decidedly too dear. The traceable benefit is small or none; the very fash of the thing is great. In another month or so I think I shall part with my quadruped in some rational way; and not be in haste to resume the like.

These three days I have been kept in quite special annoyance by two summonses to go up to Westminster, and serve as a Special Juryman;3—in two different courts both at once too, is not that a peculiar beauty! The whole aspect of the thing, the maddest-looking stew of lies and dust and foul breath, fills me with despair. I attended two days,—neither of my cases coming on; I inquired of all persons what I had to do, or look for: in vain; there was no gleam of daylight in it for me; not so much as a seat to sit down upon: at length I followed the hest of nature, came quietly away, out of a place which I could understand nothing of except that I was very sick and miserable in it; determined to let Nature and Accident work out an issue in it which I could understand. They have a power it seems of fining me to the extent of £100; but are not like to do it. The world I live in is too mad, and I am not patient enough of its madness. My soul is sick of it, impatient of it, contemptuous of it; desiring or expecting nothing more, in general, than to be well out of it, with my work well done. This latter is an important point; Thank God, it grows to seem to me ever more important. Patientia [Patience]!

My Mahomet is done,—not so very ill, I suppose, tho' it looks to me as very ill. I must begin the third,—umgenebelt [confused] as I am. Be patient with me, my Brother!— A certain Augsburg German, and acquaintance of yours, Dr—God knows what (Arndlhofer? no!) “editor of the Augsburg Gazette,” is coming to tea tonight. Vogelsang he says brought you and him together.4 He is a blonde German-faced, very solid well-instructed modest-looking man: Garnier brought him here two days ago; I, liking him, appointed this second meeting. More of him, at all events the right name of him next time! No word out of Annandale yet. Abundantly damp weather, no tendency to heat hitherto. Yours ever, dear Jack— T. C.