The Collected Letters, Volume 25


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE; 30 November 1850; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18501130-TC-JAC-01; CL 25: 297-298


Chelsea, 30 Novr, 1850—

Dear Brother,

I am bound for the Museum today: a certain unfortunate has written to me about a Cromwell Letter (sorrow on his labour, and less power to his elbow!)—by way of clearing myself of that small burble, I find I had better go at once and take a copy of said “Cromwell Letter.” May it prove the last of the set!

Jane applied the Liniment, and I believe still applies it; but does not yet admit that the hurt in the breast is at all improved. The arm seems to have recovered; but the other (I find it is below the center of of1 the right breast; I said above, last time) stands where it did. There is no outer discolaration, no hardness; nothing to be seen or felt (it appears); only a constant uneasiness, and pain when it is interfered with. The pain or the uneasiness, I conjecture, wd be a small matter; but poor Jane has got her Aunt Jeannie, her Aunt of Liverpool,2 and I know not whom else into her head; I see, she afflicts herself with apprehensions considerably, and is in bad spirits about her hurt. Mrs Wedgwood was once hurt somewhat so; and tells her it went quite away, but took a year first, and Brodie3 himself could do nothing for it. We must just be patient; this thing, once one is used to its presence, will not frighten so much.— We have at present the addition of harsh weather; dirty frozen-fog weather; which does neither of us a kindness. I often wonder how my poor Mother is getting on amid the storms? My own inside is in the queasiest condition; and I often wish I were far off in the quiet country and had a horse to ride! Cor inquietum est [The heart is unquiet], saith St Augustine,4—especially when the bowels are gone to ruin! Tell us punctually how my Mother is; and do your best to guard her against the weather and other injuries. Ah me!

Poor Dr Hunter's black Note was one of the saddest to me I have seen, this long while. A sad dissolution of partnership to him indeed.5 Poor fellow, he tried to cower as low as possible, and nestle in the nook where he was born: but here too the Destroyer finds him, here too there is notice given, Thou must begone! Send my kind sympathies to him, poor fellow, when you write, if it seem to you the expression of such a thing can be of the least alleviation to him.— And poor John Carlyle,—by all means use me in anything you think could help the poor simple soul in the state he is in.6 I suppose it is little help, beyond what he has, that mortal man could yield him: but his sad state often comes before me, and gives rise to many thoughts.

I am still unoccupied except with reading &c: in fact, my state of biliary arrangement is such as to forbid the “rage of composition” just now, if there were life in me to conceive such a purpose in my present humour. John Chorley recommends a quiet German watering place (Green Country, Rhineland or elsewhere) so soon as the winter is over. Perhaps? The fact is, I must decide on trying something for myself, if such wretched prolapsus &c &c don't please to abate by and by.— — Here is Jamie's Newspaper, come this week,—the first instance of such a thing. The No Popery continues; and there is still nothing else.— I must off thro' the dim haze; no sun will get out today. Tell me of my dear old Mother! Good be with you all.— T. C.