The Collected Letters, Volume 25


TC TO JANE WELSH CARLYLE ; 15 September 1850; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18500915-TC-JWC-01; CL 25: 217


Scotsbrig, Sunday 15 Septr, 1850

“Nothing,” still “Nothing” today again, is what little Jenny reports from the Backburn post-office where she has been. Yesterday I pretty confidently expected some line from you: that “influenza” you were nursing had seized my attention; I noticed farther that the “Ecclefechan” on the last Newspaper was very badly written;—suppose you were lying sick all this time! I will endeavour not to torment myself with what I cannot help or influence; but I do wish very much I had an articulate word. Ashley's Sunday is out now;1 and if this could still reach you in time to operate upon tomorrow, I wd bid it make speed! Poor Goody, poor little soul, and nothing but a stranger maid beside her!— Well, I must be patient; Tuesday and the Newspapers will bring me some indication at any rate.— As to myself, I have recovered my sleep again, these past two nights, and am altogether at the old pass or better. My toe itself has considerably abated; I have got my shoes gutta-percha'd anew at Ecclefechan, anew and rightly, the Chelsea work was scandalous: and now I have a pair of real shoes, in which I can walk, and the toe says next to nothing! A ride or two I have also had; rapid steady walk, is the pace; very beautiful thro' the hot sunny windless afternoon. Last night at dusk I went down by Sattur,2 the valley of Mein (very rough paths there), and home by Ecclefechan again: one of my ghost walks, which I sometimes try. On the whole, I am lazy to a degree, but must not otherwise complain.— Jack still visits us rarely and with great brevity; reports favourably of his patient: yesterday, I suppose, he must have been at Moffat again, visiting poor Mrs Hunter. His “practice” here is great,—all in the gratuitous shape. Jamie was yesterday building ricks; crop good, but ripens slowly. No potatoes eatable; no vegetables at all: I have dined thrice on mutton-chop to bread; am returning today to my two eggs as preferable.— God bless thee, dear Jeannie; I shall surely hear some word tomorrow or Tuesday?—— Yours ever

T. Carlyle