January-July 1842

The Collected Letters, Volume 14


TC TO THOMAS STORY SPEDDING ; 26 March 1842; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18420326-TC-TSS-01; CL 14: 97


Templand, Thornhill, Dumfries 26 March, 1842—

Dear Spedding,

An event has occurred here, of which it seems to me you ought to be apprised. My poor Mother-in-law, Mrs Welsh of this place, was unexpectedly called away by death, on the 25th of last month. We had no intimatn or suspicion of her danger; she had been complaining, but was often sickly, and treated this, and taught us to treat it, as a mere common illness. Our first alarm was from the Doctor on the very day when death followed. Her only Daughter and Child was then sick at Chelsea; but started instantly, in a paroxysm of hope and fear; travelling all night, she was met at her Uncle's door in Liverpool on the morrow morning, by the news that all had already ended. She stopped there. She is now home again at Chelsea, with one of her cousins to nurse her; the tone of her Letters is still full of misery.

I am here ever since this day three weeks; entirely alone for the last week. Multiplicities of sad rustic business are to be arranged; for this establishment is to be concluded, and lies suddenly all round me in ruins,—like an arch with its keystone suddenly struck out. I fear I shall be detained here some three weeks yet.

I send you many kind thoughts across the Frith, and these sad tidings, having none better. You need not write till I get back to London.

Yours ever faithfully

T. Carlyle