April 1849-December 1849

The Collected Letters, Volume 24


TC TO JOHN CHILDS; 1 May 1849; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18490501-TC-JCHI-01; CL 24: 39-40


Chelsea, 1 May, 1849—

My dear Sir,

Thanks for the Letters, for the Tracts;1 I now return you Mr Drane's,2 lest it fall aside here. He seems a serious clear-sighted whole-hearted man,—sitting in the middle of a “religious world” fallen altogether as ruinous as other kinds of “worlds” are; waiting, all of them, for the broom of the scavenger!

Do not lose the Repeal Paper, for I have no other copy. The second article of the Spectator, that about “Irish Regiments,”3 I must also for a like reason beg you to take care of. I know not whether it would suit your Public at all; it is very foreign indeed to the English Public altogether just now; but the notion contained in it will have to grow familiar, I believe,—and will have to introduce itself as practice (not without difficulty, I can see!) into all Irish, and also all Scotch and all English and all European affairs, if this quagmire of an existence is ever to become firm land for us again! Really I am sick of all this Ballot-boxing and Parliamentary and other oratory; and wish, greatly, the wiser (wherever they find themselves) would take practical command of the foolisher (who are amazingly plentiful, and discoverable everywhere just now), and guide them a little; which is the grand aim and end of all ballot-boxing, electioning and other social arrangement whatsoever!— Alas, all this is a good way off yet: nevertheless we shall perhaps see it begun in our time; and that will be an achievement for our poor babbling time: once begun, it will not end for five centuries, I think; not till it has made the whole world really new.

In this No of Fraser's Magazine, you will find a word on “Indian Meal”; which I wish all manner of corn-merchants &c &c would take thought of, and begin to act upon.

Yours always truly /

T. Carlyle

A few more of the Examiner Papers, please:4 I have now only one left,—none to give away.