January 1829-September 1831

The Collected Letters, Volume 5


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE; 17 July 1831; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18310717-TC-JAC-01; CL 5:304-305.


Craigenputtoch, 17th July, 1831—

My Dear Jack,

I have under this same Cover (by favour of the Advocate) despatched the Weimar Letter1 (that is to go with the Seal) into Fraser's hand: he is to get it copied, signed &c; and then deliver over the whole to you; by whom (as I see on Friday that the ‘Bücher’ [books] are ‘gekommen’ [have arrived]) it can then be despatched without loss of a moment.

You will wrap the whole items, as neatly and stoutly as may be, under one cover, addressed: Seiner Excellenz &c in Weimar [To his Excellency in Weimar]; on the top of which lay this Letter for Messrs Parish (having sealed it); then bind up the whole under another ply of brown paper, write on it: Messrs Parish & Co Merchants Hamburg (Speed), and send it off by the fleetest of Steamboats, andar con Dios [to go with God]! I think I have now done with it, after paying my subscription— You, I observed, had not subscribed (notwithstanding my offer); and doubtless considering the actual state of our funds, it was a wise sacrifice.

I have written twice; once since your last Letter, as doubtless you would (yesterday, I think) discover. There was the meagrest of Bank Notes, and a notification that Bowring was to pay you for the Nibelungen, which I trust he will forthwith do.— I am labouring at Teufel with considerable impetuosity and calculate that unless accidents intervene, I may be actually ready to get under way about the end of the month. But there will not be a minute to lose. I sometimes think the Book will prove a kind of medicinal Assafoetida [sic] for the pudding Stomach of England, and produce new secretions there. Iacta est alea [The die is cast]2! I will speak out what is in me, tho' far harder chances threatened. I have no other trade, no other strength, or portion in this Earth. Be it so.— If you do not think Caroline street will answer (after what I wrote by the frank Letter), then look out for some other hole to hide us. But I explained my whole Lodging views already.— You must write, and explain to me what you make or feel. Hourly you come into my head sitting in your lone cabin in that human chaos, with mehr als ein schilling [more than one shilling], and bread and water for your dinner;3 and I cannot say but I respect you more and love you more than ever I did. Courage! Courage! Tapferkeit, “deliberate valour” is God's highest gift, and comes not without trial to any. Times will mend: or if Times never mend, then in the Devil's name, let them stay as they are, or grow worse, and we will mend.— I know but one true wretchedness, the Want of Work (Want of Wages is comparatively trifling); which want, however, in such a world as this Planet of ours, cannot be permanent—unless we continue blind therein. I will hear and understand all from you: then do our utmost to approximate the best. I must to my Dreck, for the hours go: Gott mit Dir [God be with you]!

T. Carlyle—