The Collected Letters, Volume 26


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE; 14 December 1851; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18511214-TC-JAC-01; CL 26: 268-269


[14 or 15 December 1851]

My dear Brother,

Let me send you a single word from this scene of hurry and confusion, to signify merely that we are here and safe; more is not possible just now, for I write in the drawingroom (for the sake of fire, my own room being cold beyond tolerability), and there are ten people babbling and talking round me in every form of noisy tattle: heigho!— — I came down on Saturday, according to program; six of us [two lines torn away] and towards four, [several words torn away] [sa]turated, I, with emptyish talk and anecdote &c about Paris and Louis Napoleon;—very glad to have a cup of tea and a little silence. We, that is we two, it appears, are to stay till the day after Christmas;—some of us are already rather impatient for that term than otherwise!

Poor Jane has had a cold all this while, almost a constant headache, and is still decidedly out of sorts. Both Lady A. and her Mother have been and still are ailing; poor Jane had to officiate as “Sister of [line torn away] of her [line torn away]all a little [several words torn away] temperance, and rigid abstinence from all manner of grand luxuries provided here, contrive to get along better or worse.— Other people are coming, Macaulay, Ld Grey &c, but none that are interesting to me; and as to any species of work, that is once for all impossible.— Alas, they are calling to me specially; even this miserable scribble must come to an end! I hope I shall get a ride today; I have already had walking,— [two lines torn away] yesterday; I could do nothing [to]wards reading them, or almost nothing. Yesterday, in fact, I was myself far out of order; but today, by good care and exertion, I have got almost wholly round again.

My poor good Mother, lying quietly in bed,1 how often has she come in my head since I came here!— Write us a word to say how she and you all are. Adieu, dear Brother. God bless you all.

Ever your affectionate

T. Carlyle