January 1835-June 1836

The Collected Letters, Volume 8


TC TO MARGARET A. CARLYLE; 14 April 1836; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18360414-TC-MAC-01; CL 8:333-334.


Chelsea, 14 April [1836]

My Dear Mother,

I marked in your Examiner yesterday that Jack was come, that there would be a Letter in 3 days: but now we hear of you in Dumfries, and as a Letter can find you instantly, no delay is to be made: Jack even will not hear of waiting “a minute for a frank,” but will “pay it himself.” He came, the day before yesterday, after being expected: a hackney Coach trundled up to the door just after dinner, with a Doctor and a great heap of luggage. He seems very glad; hearty, often-laughing; with a large broad face still, tho' the hair has a decided shade of gray. He speaks of being “detained at least a week or two.” Read “a month or two” for all things are at sea yet with us; the man must claver [talk idly] immensely, and inquire and speculate before any result be arrived at. Lady Clare is going back to Italy, he thinks: but whether she will take a Doctor; or whether he will go, is completely uncertain. There let it hang uncertain.— Your Bank business will be done (on Wednesday first) exactly as the others were done: “Money from Doctor Carlyle for Margaret Carlyle” (never heeding the “Jones & Compy”); and James will put “right” on the Newspaper.— Poor Jean and he! I wish they could put “right” too about their little Boy. They will be full of anxiety, and nothing can be done to help. Some Doctor's advice should be taken, tho' I know not in the least whose; and know not much whether they can serve greatly. It rests with the Supreme Power, and we must keep hoping; you (that can strive) hoping & striving.

We were largely contented with your good Letter,1 and thankful for it. But do not say now that you cannot write! That excuse will never pass again.— Jane is pretty well, and very glad about the Doctor. I also am got round to my old condition; and have done a task this day again, after idling yesterday. I shall very soon be thro' the Second volume; then there is but one to do: and I mean to come and bury myself somewhere (say Dumfriesshire), in the profoundest rest, for three months after that. Courage! “Steady!” as the drill-serjeants say.— I have sent two Newspapers to Jenny, one yesterday with a mark for Jack on it: I had got one in return from her that very day with “Thanks; all well; write soon.”— Our affection to all and every one (all are present to me, but there is no room for names).— Your affectionate,

T. Carlyle—