October 1833-December 1834

The Collected Letters, Volume 7


TC TO JOHN STUART MILL; 24 December 1833; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18331224-TC-JSM-01; CL 7:65-67.


Craigenputtoch 24th Decr 1833

My Dear Mill,

This Note is not worth Twopence, or indeed half one penny: but I write it to remind you of me, and prevent a possible supererogation on your part; the more supererogatory, as you have so much of the necessary to do.

It strikes me that in the last Letter I mentioned Beaumarchais' Works. Now it so happens that next day, a complete Copy of these arrived here; and I have already satisfied myself about the Mariage de Figaro, and various other points;—and you, my beneficent purveyor, are discharged from all care on that head.

Will you tell Mrs Austin that we received her two Notes; that I have taken order about the Book,1 and will write when I have read it.

Poor Glen has actually come! It seems to me, in spite of superficial hallucinations, he is far wiser than when we used to see him in London. His mouth has lost that foolish undecided twist: he is very greatly calmer, manfuller, more distinct and resolved, in his general manner and bearing, than I ever saw him. He has come thro' what he calls the pèine forte et dure [severe and persisting misery] (and hopes he is to grow clearer for it)—in battling not with flesh and blood, but with his own Phantasms; any way in battling. Strange are the ways of Destiny with us! I hope, to poor Glen, it will one day prove all for good.

Wild winter is howling around; but from time to time one snatches a glimpse of clear weather; and remembers that the Sun is not extinct, only gone into the other room. He will be back in Spring: reparaitra au printems.

None of your Books have come; nor indeed any Book from London, last month. I have taken order about it tonight.

That notice of the Repository was by you? There is much in Fox that I wholly agree with; or rather I agree with almost all in him, only do not rate it so high as he.2

The old Criticism on Napier3 happened to be carried away before I got it read. The Article on Mi[ss Martineau]4 I did not recognise as yours; tho' I remember feeling it to [be] wiser than much that I had read about her. But the truth is, so much mere babbling pro and con has taken place about poor Miss M. that wherever I see her name, I feel a kind of temptation to skip. She is the most intelligible of women; also the most measurable. There was the abominablest tirade about her in Fraser;5 which you I suppose were happy enough not to see.

Reports are current here that Ld Advocate Jeffrey is to be made a Scotch Judge.6 He himself says nothing of it.

Write soon. Next week? I wish I could force you [to] write daily, without needing any answer—

Good night! /

T. Carlyle—