October 1845-July 1846

The Collected Letters, Volume 20


TC TO C. H. COOPER ; 7 January 1846; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18460107-TC-CHC-01; CL 20: 97-99


Chelsea, 7 jany 1846—

Dear Sir,

I find the Second Edition of the Book on Cromwell is to go on much sooner than I expected; in fact it has become necessary for me to set the Printers to work without delay,—and of course, as an indispensable preliminary, to have before me a complete Collection of all the new Letters &c which are to be introduced.

Under these circumstances might I venture, in addition to your other kindness, to solicit speed from you. Of the Copies you promised me there are none unattainable here but those of the Baker Mss: the Cambridge Portfolio doubtless is in the Museum, and your own Book you were to give me.1 Of all the Letters from O. Cromwell's Memoirs of Cromwell I have already Copies; likewise of all Cary's, the Annual Register, Gent. Magazine &c.2 in a word if you could be so good as send me your own Book and the Baker Letters so as to be here on Monday night next, I should not trouble you farther in the mechanical department of Copying, but reserve my interest with you for more important uses. On Monday night next, by a coach Parcel, if convenient to you;—and failing the Cambridge-Portfolio Letters, if you happened to have a Copy of the Cambridge Portfolio Book that you could lend me for a week, I should take care to return it in safety, and be much obliged. But this is of small moment, this latter point: of course the Book will be accessible in the Museum, or the Booksellers here can procure me a Copy of it. What I have to ask you farther is more important to me. I will divide it into separate heads.

I. In the Letter to Mr Hand of Ely (O.C.'s Memoirs 40 p. 230), there is reference made to a kind of Charitable Institution at Ely called Feoffees Fund, and in the page preceding the Letter an Extract is given from the Books of that Institution,—which seem still extant?3 If so I should like well to have it the Extract dated, as of course in the original it is likely to be. Farther, What has become of that Feoffees Fund? Is it still extant in any shape; or when did it disappear? Do the Books specify Mr Hand as Acting Secretary of it; or is any other notice discoverable of Mr Hand?—— I have not the advantage to know directly any intelligent person in Ely, to whom these queries could be addressed; but as you are comparatively a neighbour to that City, perhaps it might be in your power so far to help me.4

2. In the Letter of Cromwell and Lowry to the Cambridge Corporation (Cromwell, 226) there is no date given; and moreover in the date “May 11, 1641” which stands as the day of reading the Letter, I find some questionability: it is the day before Strafford's Execution; and I do not at present remember any “Protestation” going on precisely at that time: in a word, I should like well to know that it is indisputably “May” in the Cambridge Town Books;5—if “March” or “Martii” 11 chanced to be the word there, it would serve for the “Grand Protestation”6 of all, and make much better sense on the face of it.

3. Can you inform me Whether, in the Town Books, or elsewhere, there is any trace of the “Cambridge Committee”; General Committee for the Eastern Association; which I find had its seat habitually there?— In a recently discovered Letter of Oliver's (printed, with one word wrong “feudall” for “several,” in the Athenaeum of 13 Deer last) addressed to the “Ely Committee” I find that, to make sense, we must suppose the Ely Committee sitting at Cambridge too,—which I do not yet clearly know otherwise that it did.7 Nor indeed most likely will it prove very discoverable now!—

In regard to the Second of these queries I find prospect of some elucidation from your Cambridge Annals itself: in regard to the others I will beg you not to take more trouble than enough, or indeed any inconvenience trouble at all; and shall with real thankfulness accept whatever you can give me.— Perhaps, if you do not forbid, there may be other questions to apply to you upon. For the present I have done; and remain (in much haste)

Very truly yours /

T. Carlyle