October 1856-July 1857

The Collected Letters, Volume 32


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE ; 1 May 1857; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18570501-TC-JAC-01; CL 32: 137


Chelsea, 1 May 1857—

My dear Brother,

I had your Note this morning; I have been long looking for it. You shd write me oftener, in these times of cheap postage; I am so held, I never write when it can be avoided. Whh also I surmise some times is an error on my part.

Jane has got no more cold for a six weeks past; but is so utterly weak she cannot rally much till the sun come; and this is as grim a Mayday as I ever saw. For my own share, I am no worse than usual; often somewhat disheartened by my last mischance,—but on the whole it is rather in the imagination, all that, if we take it up strictly. Considerable bother I have had, learning to wear (easily) my apparatus;1 but worn, it is a complete succedaneum: I have never had either pain or inconvenience from the thing at all except in that way only. And riding answers better than walking for it, I think. Besides it is really an admonition to me. “Be canny!” it says,—for exactly in proportion to my general health is the tolerability of that “apparatus” and the rest of it.

I expect to have a Bargain made with Chapman in a few days;—then to go fairly to press with my two volumes;2 get these done within about a year;—after whh have a long pause (perhaps visit Germany &c) before starting on the other two. By working “Canny, Canny,” I believe I have still strength for this.

Residence in the country, with meal and milk ad libitum [freely], fresh air, and quiet, quiet:—this is my constant daydream at present; in fact I get a deal of annoyance out of London, and my imagination aggravates it, and abolishes the good there is. If you had a nice Country house, and we this Town one, what fine exchanging of quarters there might be!— — I send Fraser today for Jean after you. My affectionate regards to Jamie & Isabla,—to poor old Grahame3 too.

Yours ever, dr Brother

T. Carlyle