The Collected Letters, Volume 12


TC TO JAMES CARLYLE ; 17 March 1840; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18400317-TC-JC-01; CL 12: 75-76


Chelsea, Tuesday / 17 March, 1840—

My dear Jamie,

As I do not hear from you, I must write again to tell you about Austin's money. Not getting any word from you, and growing to apprehend at last that perhaps Austin might be suffering from want of the cash, which would have to be produced some time or other, I yesterday steered towards the Bank with Thirty pounds, and sent it off for him to the Commercial Bank at Annan. I have written to him that it will be there on Thursday first, or any day after that. I had written first that you should go down to Annan too on Thursday, and “help” him in the getting of it out: but I find, on reconsidering, that it is very likely he may not get his Letter at all till Thursday; wherefore I have written now that he is not to expect you or anybody, but to go himself on what day he likes, and (with a Paper I had sent him) present himself at the Bank. I hope therefore this matter is finished now. You said “between £20 and £30”; I have sent the largest of these sums, as you did not specify more minutely. Indeed, I began to consider that perhaps you would not like to specify more minutely. I shall like to hear farther news from you about the Gill. Alick's opinion I was glad to observe, seemed to be very favourable as to the place.

Do you, for your own sake, know anything farther about that “Duke's-Farm” that was to fall vacant down in the Border somewhere? Jack and I were speaking of it the very day before he went away from London. I think you ought to keep your eye on the place, make up your mind clearly as to what it is worth, and offer for it if you saw good. Jack would “speak or write to the Duke.”1 The Duke, it seems, does not do favours to anybody in the matter of land; but of course Jack's word would go a certain length; and, I think, might fetch such a thing if a fair rent were offered. Do not neglect it at any rate, should nothing better turn up.

I am still held very busy; the eastwind also is not a great favourite with me. I have got my horse again, however; and have a beautiful gallop almost every day of late. It is the very life of me. The horse came the day after I sent for it; in the most perfect condition, new-shod brisk and glittering to the outmost fringe of it! They have clipt the skin of it; that is an art they have here, and a universal practice for smart horses: to the very tip of the ears all is clipt, in the neatest manner, and you cannot know it from the sleek fell [the way the hair lies] of a horse at midsummer,—not even by the colour, in my case; for mine is black as a coal down to the very root.

I suppose you have word from the Doctor fully as late as ours here. He told me he had written about poor little Tom. I hope the change of weather when it comes will do something for that poor little fellow.— I have to write a word to my Mother. Why did not, why do not you write?— Ever yours,

T. Carlyle