August-December 1842

The Collected Letters, Volume 15


TC TO MARGARET A. CARLYLE ; 8 October 1842; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18421008-TC-MAC-01; CL 15: 122


Chelsea, 8 Octr, 1842—

My dear Mother,

Forgive me if I put you off again with one of the shortest of Letters; a mere line to tell you how we are, to ask how you are!

Yesterday I sent off the Dumfries Newspaper to Jack, that he might consult the Steamboat Advertisement: he said he meant to go “next week”; I think Tuesday or else Thursday (the latter likelier) may possibly be enough be his day. So on Friday next you may all meet again;—a happy meeting to all of you!

Today I enclose you, dear Mother, this little Five-pound Note; which is intended to buy you a suit of winter clothes. You are not to neglect doing that, remember! I cannot understand here what to get you, so well as you there can choose for yourself.

Jane has got an unlucky cold which plagues her somewhat for the week past: neither is it yet away; but I hope it will depart before long. Little “Cousin Jeannie” has a cold too: we are an unsound set of people!— As for me I complain not of health; but terribly of stupidity, of the inability to get on with work! I must bore away; there is nothing else for me whatever. It will be long, long before I get any mark made on the job: but at length one must and will get into it.

This morning a singular American Letter with three big Newspapers1 lay in the Letter-box: the writer seemingly a rather curious man. The Letter is here. You can keep it till Jack come; then let him burn it. The writer dates from the very bottom of the Western wilderness; almost as far beyond New York, as New York is beyond us! It is curious how a small scrape of a pen will travel. I wrote the poor man a syllable of encouragement back; I will not write any more to him.

It gives us great pleasure to hear of Jamie's harvest: we shall need a little morsel of meal by and bye;—I think rather less perhaps than last year, for we are falling off from supper somewhat, and often enough sup only on a cup of hot milk.——— Remember me in unabated affection to Alick, to all the rest, of whom daily I have kind recollection,—kinder than any words.

Adieu, dear Mother. When Jack comes I shall expect plentiful news from all of you. Good be ever with you!

Your affectionate /

T. Carlyle