TC TO JWC ; 30 June 1858; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18580630-TC-JWC-01; CL 33: 264-265
TC TO JWC
The Gill, 30 june, 1858—
The excellent Narration of events, Hayfield, Tait & others less joyful, was lying on the table for me yesterday morning. Along with it was the Scott beauty: a request for introductions to America whither Scott is going to lecture, it ultimately proved;—I (with suppression of an inward growl) have now done the needful in that matter,1 and will send you the Letter tomorrow: today Tait is loading enough. I cannot tell what to do with Tait as matters have gone: I can only wish his Picture were in the Red Sea, and decide that if Lord An keep it I, for one, will try to keep well out of sight or hearing of it for the future! So much I have I have2 intimated to Tait; absolving him from blame on the subject; and I have said that I wd speak of it no more, and that you could (if he applied) for me as well as yourself. So make the best of it: if the sale were capable of being altogether abolished, it wd be a real relief to me!—
Yesterday and since the night before Jean was here; very affectionate, nothing like so cheery & merry as she once was,—Time demanding his dues there too. She had much endeavoured to bring me suitable specimens of cloth; but had not in any instance quite hit the mark: indeed I wish I had gone to Bull's myself;—but she engages to new enterprises on the matter; will send to Glasgow even;—and in short it is hoped the “cares of cloth” will be got transacted before long; and a beautiful stock of fitting raiment be once more among my conquests in this evil world. John, we heard yesterday, had crossed Jean in the railway; “summoned by telegraph into Galloway to see Arbuckle3 who was very ill”;—today John writes that Arble had got the turn before his arrival; and that he will be at Dumfries tonight:—tomorrow here in passing, I consider likely.— I go on well; am very sad and solitary; ill in want of a horse (tho' my ancle is not worsening); decidedly likely to improve in health in such an element as I have. The evening walks in the grey howl of the winds, by the loneliest places I can find, are like walks in Hades; yet there is something wholesome in them, something stern & grand: as if one had the Eternities for company in defect of suitabler.
Poor John Welsh, I am truly wae to think of him, honourable useful young soul. I cannot pretend, either, to disagree quite with your sorrowful anticipations: but I consider you do exaggerate; and that John himself, being now heartily frightened, may do a great deal to help himself. If retreat to Madeira thro' Winter or the like wd be of use (as surely it might), you shall have the pleasure and solacement of aiding in it (remember that) to whatever extent you like.
Tait was not jilted then in the Brighton matter! I expect some Narrative of it tomorrow:—I hope it did not hurt you; that your silence today is accountable otherwise than so? My truant imagination has been trying it that way, tho' witht success!—No rain but the slightest showers fell here, tho' Cumberland &c got plenty of it; and the weather is still beautifully windy & cool. My wishes go even the length of Nero! Adieu, dear Jeannie mine.