October 1831-September 1833

The Collected Letters, Volume 6


TC TO MARGARET A. CARLYLE; 29 June 1832; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18320629-TC-MAC-01; CL 6:178-179.


Craigenputtoch, 29th June 1832.

My dear Mother,

You shall have a short Note from me, tho' my Task should stand half done all night. Peter Austin, I expect, will take you this on Monday; and tell you all about our Peat-leading, and what not: but I imagine you will not dislike a word under my own hand also.

Thank Jane for her Letter: it gave us great relief to know that you were getting into your natural way again; that the rest were all in theirs. Let us hope this good state of matters still holds. As for yourself, I think you must go and have a plunge in the Solway this fine weather: when I come down next, I will try to keep an eye on the Moon; bring the Clatch with me, and roll you along therein myself. I too want much to be bathed.

We are all going on as you saw us, or better. Jane is a little out of sorts these two or three days, but in general seems clearly improving. The Boy has cleaned the Garden (which looks well now), and is at this moment slashing (like a Waterloo hero) among the nettle and dock Hosts over the paling: I hope they will not smother him up, but that his little arm and blunt hook will cut a way thro' them. Betty has got “Noolly”1 back again,—little improved in temper, she says. Soft grass will soften her.

As for myself I am doing my utmost; and seeing (as you counselled) not to “make it too high.” In spite of “the Taylors applauses,” I find myself but a handless workman too often, and can only get on by a dead struggle. This thing2 I calculate will be over in two weeks; and so the stone rolled from my heart again—for a little. I mean to run over, and ask what you are doing shortly after: most probably I will write first, by Notman. For the rest, I am well enough, and cannot complain while busy. I go riding every fair morning; sometimes as early as six, and enjoy this blessed June weather; oftenest over in the Galloway side, the road being open and good now. My Beast is wholly satisfactory; learns fast to ride, is already a good canterer: tame quiet and biddable as horse ever was. The Boy has had it in the cart too, and finds no difficulty in handling it. So dear Mother, on that hand, set your heart at rest.

No Examiner came this week: I have charged Alick to send you over the Courier by Peter. The following week, you will find either it or something at the Postoffice at the usual time. Any way there is no news of moment. The poor old King has been hit (by a solitary Blackguard) with a stone; Wellington was peppered with “mud and dead cats” along the whole length of London: I am sad for him, yet cannot but laugh to think of the business; the cast-metal man riding slowly five long miles, [along] the way like a pillar of glar [mud]!3 Every beast [you] see, has its burden; every dog its day.4

I have no Letter from Jack; and fancy him to be waiting for one from me: it is not unlikely that I may have one to bring you when I come. Their Post in Italy seems to be one of the worst.— But now, my dear Mother, you see I must finish. My brotherly love to them all. Take care of yourself, and let me find you well. All Good be with you all, now and ever!— Your affectionate Son—

T. Carlyle

The Edinr Review Article5 (I have told Alick too) is to be printed: I hope to show it you by and by.