The Collected Letters, Volume 12


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE ; 2 April 1840; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18400402-TC-JAC-01; CL 12: 94-95


Chelsea, 2 April, 1840—

My dear Brother,

This morning (while the horse has not yet come, and my “studies” have ended) I will write you a Letter as short as one of your own; principally to counteract and correct the very sulphurous communication written two days since. I was obliged to write that day, acknowledging your £100; and all else but that acknowledgement might as well, I think, have remained unwritten. I felt a little better next day, or at least I had gathered myself together a little; I galloped as far as Richmond and back again by the loneliest roads discoverable; and tho' I did not ride at all yesterday, I still feel in a better key today. With a bright sun shining, and wind enough, I expect to make a beneficial ride again. My Lectures begin to oppress me sore: but riding is the recipe; I really have something to say, and tolerable clearness of spirits and nerves is the first and last condition of getting it said. My subject, this time, is not so much historic as didactic; a partly new arrangement; which I must try to get thro' as I best may. Next year perhaps I may find myself in condition to omit Lecturing; perhaps I may have a Book on the anvil; which will be far better. Courage!

Yesterday, Jane had gone out; and so the Letter of Credit, left under her keeping, was not attainable when I left home; wherefore nothing could be done with it. I will go some morning into the City and send it off to Dumfries: one loses a few pence of interest daily (better not lost) by having it lie dormant here. Many kind thanks, once more, for your brotherly behaviour in this matter! I know not whether I shall keep the £30 yet or not; it is not very momentous which way we decide.— Our Library concern will be advertised very soon in the Newspapers: nothing momentous passed yesterday;1 they have named me a Secretary, but do not as yet expect me to act at all A right Lending Library here will be an infinite benefit to everybody.

To send you at least some bulk, I stick-in Grahame's Letter:2 it will bring you home to Burnswark, in all its simplicity, stupidity and other honest characteristics. I meant writing to Jean at Dumfries too; but fear it will not do today. Your second little short Note came. Write as briefly, and otherwise how and in what manner, you find to be best. Half a word is worth sending. Good luck to you!— Yesterday Milnes had the strangest Pamphlet from Cambridge: a kind of version of my Chartism into Hexameter verse!3 It was printed not published. If they send me a copy you shall see it.

Ever yours /


Today Mazzini and one Rio, a Breton Catholic, palavering Lion here at present, come to dine. Thut nichts [Does not matter]. I like Mazzini still,—a most honest, tragical man. Rio does no ill.