The Collected Letters, Volume 28


TC TO JAMES CARLYLE, JR. ; 29 July 1853; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18530729-TC-JACA-01; CL 28: 236


Chelsea, 29 july, 1853—

Dear Jamie,

I am very glad to hear, by your Note, that you have got a commercial situation which you like, and which may really be reckoned preferable to the Railway one. In the hurry and alarm there has been at Scotsbrig lately about my Mother, nobody had mentioned this change of yours. Indeed it was not the Doctor that was writing to me, but my own Mrs., who does not know you so well as he.

The way to succeed in your new place will be the same as in the old one, and is indeed the way in all situations whatsoever: To stand to it honestly, and in a conscientious, modest, diligent man[ner,] do your very best at all times! This, I have no doubt, is your purpose; and you must never slacken till you have confirmed it into steady habit. The longer you go on well, it becomes the easier to do it; habit being a “second nature.” You will learn all parts of your task, book-keeping &c &c without difficulty, if you strenuously and constantly endeavour. This will be a great happiness to all that take interest in you; and it is the confident hope of us all.

You do not mention what part of the Town your Office is in, still less what kind of trade it is the Messrs Stevenson follow:1 say a word or two about all this when you write again.

Your Chelsea Aunt is not come home yet, does not come till Monday. The news last night from Scotsbrig was good.—I remain always,

Yours affectly / T. Carlyle2