July-December 1855

The Collected Letters, Volume 30


TC TO EDWARD FITZGERALD ; 7 August 1855; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18550807-TC-EF-01; CL 30: 16


Chelsea, 7 Augt, 1855—

Dear Fitzgerald,

In spite of these heavy showers, I persist in believing the weather will clear, and means really to be dry: at any rate I am not made of sugar or of salt; so intend to be off tomorrow;—and am, even now, in all the horrors of a half rotted ship, which has lain two years, dead, among the ooze, and is now trying to get up its anchor again: ropes breaking, sails holed, blocks giving way, you may fancy what a pother there is!

My train is to be 11 a.m. from Shoreditch; which gets to Ipswich about two? If you have a gig and pony, of course it will be pleasant to see your face at the end of my shrieking, mad, (and to me quite horrible) rail operations: but if I see nothing, I will courageously go for the Coach, and shall do quite well there, if I can get on the outside especially. So don't mind which way it is; a small weight ought to turn it either way. I hope to get to Farlinghay not long after 4 o'clock,—and have a quiet mutton chop in due time, and have a do pipe or pipes: nay I could even have a bathe if there was any sea water left in the evening. If you did come to Ipswich, an hour (hardly more) to glance at the old Town might not be amiss.

I will bring Books enough with me: I am used to several hours of solitude every day; and cannot be said ever to weary of being left well alone. But we will “drive” to any places you recommend; do bidding of the omens, to a fair degree withal: in short I calculate on getting some real benefit by this plunge into the maritime rusticities under your friendly guidance, and the quiet of it will be of all things welcome to me.

My wife firmly intended writing to you today, and perhaps has done so; but if not, you are to take it as a thing done, for indeed there was nothing whatever of importance to be said farther.

Tomorrow then (Wednesday 8th) 11 a.m.—wish me a happy passage.1

Yours ever truly, /

T. Carlyle