January-July 1842

The Collected Letters, Volume 14


TC TO JOHN FORSTER ; 2 March 1842; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18420302-TC-JF-01; CL 14: 55-56


Chelsea, Wednesday Night [2 March 1842].

Dear Forster,

My poor Mother-in-Law, Mrs Welsh whom you remember, has been suddenly called away out of this world. Her poor Daughter, who never dreamt of danger till Monday last, started from her sick-room at the first intimation, you may judge in what a state; and set off by the first railway-train of the same day. Alas, on reaching her Uncle's at Liverpool she learns that it is already all over; that her poor Mother never recovered from that sudden stroke (something of palsy, I take it), but expired on the evening of the same day, Friday last. My wife has paused at Liverpool; lies there very ill, as I conjecture; waiting till I come up, and decide whether she shall go farther. I go off tomorrow, and must travel without halting (as I compute) night and day.— This I could not but intimate to you, spite of my haste; as it may be a week or two before we get back. Will you communicate it to the good Mrs Macready, and the rest that come in your way: my haste, these two days, has been excessive, and still is.


The Printer has got the Book, and will proceed in it, I calculate, rapidly and satisfactorily without farther aid of mine. I have gone over it all, in these two days, and made it what it is finally to be. Robson can be depended on for correctness.

I have never got up to see the new Booksellers yet; I meant it today, but have never got across the threshold. I suppose there was a[t] bottom nothing essential to do there; or at least nothing that you will not look to better than I could have done. At first view I did not see the whole attorneyism of Fraser's notable proposal: I am very glad to be out of such hands, and into such other, even at a little loss. The real quantity of loss was one of the things I wished to ascertain today: but it is of small moment for the time being.

Adieu, dear Forster; I am still driven in the extremity of haste. My address on Friday night is “Templand, Thornhill, Dumfries”: but you need not trouble yourself with me, till you hear again, I think; for my movements are all vague, and like to be swift and fretful.

Good be with you! / Yours ever truly

T. Carlyle