April-December 1844

The Collected Letters, Volume 18


JWC TO THOMAS CARLYLE ; 12 July 1844; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18440712-JWC-TC-01; CL 18: 130-131


Friday [12 July 1844]

Dearest Good

You are really a jewel of a husband in the article of writing!—it is such a comfort to me when the nice looking little letter drops surely in! Yesterday again however I did not get it till night—and now I understand the reason of this— Letters addressed to Mr Paulet are all delivered at the office—and those to Mrs Paulet come on by the cross post to the house—and are here about eleven oclock— Pity that we had not understood this sooner— My cold is pretty well gone— I dare not take all the liberty I should like with myself in this beautiful place—but I can go out now in moderation—and can enjoy what joy is going— It is really curious however how the Devil is always busy— No sooner have I got rid of my headach and sore throat than a new botheration arises for me in what Geraldine rightly termed her “Tiger-Jealousy” You will hardly be able to conceive how this could be anything beyond laughable but I assure you it has entirely spoiled my comfort for the last twenty four hours and not only mine but Mrs Paulets and everybody else's in the house.— We were fancying her bilious and it turned out to have been all rage at me for “giving such a stab to her feelings as she had never suffered the like of from man or woman”—she came here on the understanding that I was to go back with her to Manchester and stay there a few days on the road to London— But the day before yesterday when she was alone with me in my room I wearied out with my cold, and feeling that I had to go back to Maryland Street in the first instance—it very naturally fell from me—“but since we are together here Geraldine—the going to Manchester does not seem to be any longer necessary? She answered me pettishly that “if I wished to sacrifice her to Mrs Paulet and the Welshes—in Gods name to do so”!— and went off in a nice little tiff1— But I never thought of her being seriously offended— And she had thrown the whole company into consternation by her rudeness to Mrs Paulet and Myself before we fancied she was anything else than “out of sorts”— All yesterday however her vagaries exceeded my reminiscences of Mrs Jordan in The Jealous Wife!— Nothing but outbursts of impertinence and hysterics from morning till night—which finished off with a grand scene in my room after I had gone up to bed a full and faithful account of which I shall entertain you with at meeting— It was a revealation to me not only of Geraldine but of human nature!—such mad lover-like jealousy on the part of one woman towards another it had never entered into my heart to conceive— By a wonderful effort of patience on my part—made more on Mrs Paulets account who was quite vexed—than from the flattering consideration that I was the object of this incomprehensible passion, the affair was brought to a happy conclusion— I got her to laugh over her own absurdity promised to go by Manchester if she would behave herself like a reasonable creature and with her hair all dishevelled and her face all bewept she thereupon sat down at my feet and———smoked a cigaritto!! with all the placidity in life!— She keeps a regular supply of these little things—and smokes them before all the world. In fact I am not at all sure that she is not going mad! And Mrs Paulet too declares she often feels quite anxious about her.

I like this Mrs Darbyshire very much—and another Lady2 who was here yesterday enchanted me with her music— I never heard such singing in my life— So send the trio3 for Gods sake— I keep to my purpose of going back to Maryland Street on Monday

Ever your own

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