January-September 1856

The Collected Letters, Volume 31


TC TO JOHN FORSTER ; 2 January 1856; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18560102-TC-JF-01; CL 31: 1-3


The Grange, 2 jany, 1856

Dear Forster,

Thanks kindly; and many counter wishes from us both, as cordial as they can well be. We are delighted both of us to hear your good news:1 no man deserves such a piece of good fortune better, or has more right to be congratulated on any occasion of joy by those whom he ranks as friends. This thing, in the uncertainties of literature and health, is altogether well and suitable, and comfortably closes the gap on the side of economic contingencies. Long may the good Forster live to enjoy this and the other blessings he has. By no man's good luck are his fellow men less likely to reap other than kindly fruits: that I will say for the man!—

We are getting on here taliter qualiter [one way or another]: I fancy myself improving a little in bodily health; for I walk, ride, pass nearly all my daylight time in the open air;—and am as idle as the brown leaf upon the south wind now blowing. I find on survey that there is really no other “duty” well capable of being done on present terms. Ten days more, and it will be over; and we shall then see how the old harness sits on us.

We are a fluctuating company; come like shadows and so depart.2 The agreeablest phenomenon at present is Alfred Tennyn who came two days ago and is still to hold out a little while.3 He has a big mustache carefully cultivated, and with his new wide-awake looks flourishing.4 Good company to smoke with in the Conservatory of the place,—tho' he often loses his pipe:—more power to him!

I have got from three different hands here (unsolicited) the sum of £9.2 for the old Lowes,5 which shall be paid on my arrival. I also write this day to Brydges the Actuary, to expedite the requisite settlement of date, and let us be ready to wind up shortly after we meet.6

The Cromwell Letter,—which seems to be perfectly genuine,—I had already clipt from the Nation;7 I am no worse to have this second string to my bow. Edinr Review must be out; but is not yet here. Mind what you promised me!8

Ever yours truly /

T. Carlyle