January-July 1843

The Collected Letters, Volume 16


JWC TO THOMAS CARLYLE ; 24 July 1843; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18430724-JWC-TC-01; CL 16: 311-313


[24 July 1843]


I have been very busy all morning shifting the books—you who put them up before “with your own hands,” can understand feelingly what sort of a dusty tiresome job that has been—and that the sight of a letter already written to you returned to me by the Bishop of St Davids,1 should be under the circumstances not so unwelcome as it would otherwise have been— I do not remember a word that is in it—and if I open it to see; most certainly I should not find it worth the forwarding—so I send it to you unopened—in the humble hope that be it ever so stupid; it will be as good as any other I could have written today—for besides the fatigue of the books I am headachy and dull—from natural causes— I have a very good letter from Jeffrey today in the patriarchal vein—he has been very ill again but is now better—

Robertson brought here last night to tea a youth from Aberdeen of the name of Mason— —A news-paper Editor poor thing, and only twenty!—he is one of your most ardent admirers and immitators2— Robertson said “he had come up to town to see the lions and so he had brought him to me”— (“my Brother plays the German flute” &c)— He is a better “speciment” of Aberdeen than I ever saw before—an innocent intelligent modest affectionate—looking creature— I quite took to him—when he went away, which he seemed to do very unwillingly, I said that he must come and see us when he returned to London and I hoped to make up then for his present disappointment by introducing him to you—to which he answered with a cordial grasp of my hand “Eh! What a real shame in ye to say that”! He told me “if I would come to Aberdeen they would get up a mob for me in the fish—market Place, and give me a grand hurrah—and a paragrap[h]3 of course!” I must tell you before I forget When Helen was handing me over some of the books she said—“take care—that ane's the Maister's sartor RESART—and a capital thing it is—just noble in my opinion”!!— She told me the other day—that “Bishop Terrot was really a wee noughty [in-significant] body as ever she set een upon” I like that word ‘noughty’ much—

I have got for reading Fielding's Amelia! and the Vicar of Wakefield4—which I am carrying on simultaneously—I find the first a dreadful bore—one prays to Heaven that the poor woman would but once for all get herself seduced, and so let us have done with her alarms and precautions; on any terms! “Upon my honour” I do not see the slightest sense in spending one's whole existence thro out three volumes in taking care of ones virtue!—do you?— Love to them all—without kisses since you are not up to these— I shall send the Examiner to you today— How happy the Choreleys will be and Mrs Paulet— —

Oh bliss! Ever your / J Carlyle