The Collected Letters, Volume 28


TC TO AN UNIDENTIFIED CORRESPONDENT ; 9 July 1853; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18530709-TC-UC-01; CL 28: 190


Chelsea, 9 july, 1853—

My dear Sir,

Here is your Brother's Letter again,1 which I am glad to have seen, and thank you for sending me. The old Vestry-Clerk is an interesting old gentleman, with his “tree planted 70 years ago”; but he is unquestionably in error as to that Cromwell point of Parish Antiquities. Cromwell did die in 1658; but it is a thing of conspicuous notoriety that his Corpse was torn out of its resting-place in Westminster Abbey in 1660, and did not get finally buried till that date,—and then, naturally, as the Law directed, under the gallows of Tyburn (close by the modern Cumberland Gate of Hyde Park); where it still lies, and will lie,—in such company as the Genius of England, much encumbered at that time could succeed in providing for it, and judging the suitablest!2 A deserved maim upon the Genius of England; which it must forever bear henceforth. The “O. C. 1658,” must therefore be a misleading or otherwise one of the thousand fables which prurient Ignorance has devised on this subject, and still goes on devising.

I hope your Calvin Book will get well edited (which will not be quite easy to do); and find readers in abundance.3

With many thanks, I remain / Yours sincerely /

T. Carlyle