August 1843-March 1844

The Collected Letters, Volume 17


JWC TO JOHN STERLING ; 16 August 1843; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18430816-JWC-JOST-01; CL 17: 55-56


Wednesday [16 August 1843]

Dear John

Thanks for your remembrance of my friend— But this situation would never do— Miss Bölte is a woman of too much mind and heart for being made into mince-meat to indiscriminate boardingschool misses:—at “a small salary” too!1 Ach gott! Better one good sixpenny-worth of arsenic once for all, than to prolong existence in that fashion!— I at least should choose the arsenic in her place, and I estimate her quick determination too highly not to believe she would do the same.

For the rest; I was never more thankful in my life than to get home again—my disgusts at Ryde had reached the point of insupportability and, tho' there had not been “a Mudie” in existence, I must have flown, to save my own life!—from bugs—from vacuum—from every thing moral and material that I most particularly abhor!— What else could possibly come of an adventure entered on under such auspices? Well! I have got some good out of it anyhow—viz: a more open sense for the comforts of my own lot—especially for the inestimable blessing I enjoy in having a bedroom undisturbed by noise and without vestige of bugs.

My Dear”—said Mazzini who came for news of me half an hour after my return, and was amazed to find my living self— “My Dear— you are in four days no longer the same! I find you—what shall I say?—looking strange upon my honour!—most like Lady Macbeth in the sleeping scene”! No wonder—so many hideous nights were enough to have made one with a twentieth part of my excitability into a somnambulist— But it is all over now thank god—that is; the great damnatory fact is over—and the consequences—the headachs &c &c will soon be over also—

A letter from my husband today indicates that he is still in being—and without any present intention of coming home—

I found your Straford on my table when I arrived for which accept my benediction— It has not however got itself cut up yet—I have been too ill and too busy— Fancy a Secretary of State and Maid of all work jumbled into one—and a perpetual dull headach for crowning complication!—

Truly yours /