October 1856-July 1857

The Collected Letters, Volume 32


TC TO JEAN CARLYLE AITKEN ; 19 January 1857; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18570119-TC-JCA-01; CL 32: 76-77


Chelsea, 19 jany, 1857—

Dear Sister,

Having literally “five minutes” with paper and pens about me, I will devote it to you, as better than nothing.

My dismals are a little abated again; I am getting the wheels to move again (they seemed fast,1 up to the axles in tough clabber, not long since);—I am also, I do believe, in a private way, slowly getting better in health. Nothing can exceed my regularity in riding; and I never in my life had such a little jewel of a Horse! You wd be amused to see how we make the glar go, of an afternoon; passing with ease all things and persons; pushing outwards for a glimpse of real sky and field, if possible. I get a kind of company even out of this respectable Nag; he knows London better than I do (never saw such a creature for roads); has real sense and virtue in him,—respects his Master, as if it were the Grand Turk or a Demigod come to ride him. In short I get real benefit from the creature; and shall still more, I am persuaded.

Jane was very proud of her stockings, tho’ they were not the kind that suit,—more is my blame! She cannot do except with fine knit stockings (not woven ones):—with my advice she therefore changed yours into the right sort, at a Scotch shop here,2 and now she is stockinged by you to her mind, all the same. With thanks! My five minutes are out. Adieu, dear Sister—

Ever your affectionate /

T. Carlyle

Monday (in greater haste than ever: horse just here!): All well still. Jack writes me nothing. Say if there are any of any3 Books wanting in your stock? The new ones are small print (too small for other than unfailed eyes), but otherwise good and correct volumes.

Adieu again, dear Sister!— /