The Collected Letters, Volume 26


TC TO LADY ASHBURTON; 22 November 1851; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18511122-TC-LA-01; CL 26: 237-238


Chelsea, 22 Novr, 1851—

Principessa [Princess]!—It shall be as you desire: how else? In all things you are beautiful and good; and much is managed by you which nobody else could manage!— You will write to Jane when you want her; to me when you want me. For some time to come, we need not want for news of what is going on.

Today I mean to use my opportunity and write to you at some length: but, alas, an invasion of the Barbarians (in many senses, “bores” &c &c) has again taken place; and with little fruit in any way and with no possibility in that way, my last minute is come. I go to buy a new “wide-awake,”1 namely, and have to meet my wife for that important object, at the stroke of half—past 3 in Croucher's reading room!2 A new wide-awake; think what a chivalrous-looking old fellow I shall be when you see me next,—if it please the pigs!— Seriously I have never had another kind of hat that was in the least comfortable for me; and in these last days to wear the old hard cylinder proves entirely insupportable.

The other day I rode with Twistleton;—very swift, very cold. He is just home from America with grand Testimonials about the orthodoxy, religiousness and other excellence of the New-England School-System; upon which he is about writing a Book,3 in aid of the Manchester Secular–School people. Good luck to it. Tn is the only official man in whom I find clear continual evidence of a human conscience being left. Falsity injustice and contemptibility will actually kindle rage in him as in a human creature!— He may be useful yet, if Ld John4 were fairly off forever.

I stand steadily by dull Preuss and Frederick the Great: one of the dullest Books of this era, and one of the greatest men.— Alas my paper too is done; my time is more than done!— Adieu, dear Lady mine. T.C.