The Collected Letters, Volume 12


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE ; 1 May 1840; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18400501-TC-JAC-01; CL 12: 127-129


Chelsea, 1 May, 1840—

My dear Brother,

We do not hear from you this week; perhaps you think I am too busy to be interfered with at all. There have been two Letters from Alick, the first signifying that our good Mother had, after her return from Dumfries, been rather alarmingly out of order one day, just the day before Alick wrote, but that she was better then, and that if he did not write by next post I was to infer her continuing well. Next post-day was Monday: there came no Letter in the morning, whereupon I wrote a word or two; but in the evening, confirmatory of my hopes there did arrive a new Letter from Alick, that all was moderately right again; that our Mother had just been there, at the preaching, well, tho' looking “pale”; that she had written me a short Letter, but forgotten it, and would send it next day,—as she accordingly did: this Letter of hers I now enclose; and herewith you have the whole narrative, which happily has ended without sinister consequence, and all now may be supposed in its usual course again. I wrote to my Mother today.

The Lectures are prepared, as far as preparation will go; I tremble for Tuesday1 yet not more than is needful. My health is not good; riding does not profit effectually: tomorrow I am to try it before breakfast, and see how that answers. One way or other, doubt it not, I shall get thro'!— The Miscellanies Book is out; “subscribed” also to Fraser's great contentment. I sent a copy to each household of the family, every brother and sister. There is one still here for you, if you will tell me what to do with it. Would you like it sent to Pellipar? Or shall it lie here, waiting for some nearer haven? After the twentieth of the month, you will know. It is a beautiful Book really; “pale green with gilt lettering,” and will do very well, I daresay.

Jeffrey is here; comes skipping down sometimes; bedeutet Nichts [it's of no importance]. He is about returning again. Tom Holcroft today sent for a Ticket; asked withal very kindly for you:2 I have just bundled up his Ticket, and responded that you are still in Ireland, doing well. John Sterling is here too; in the worst spirits I recollect him in; discontented greatly that he “is so stupid,” is forbidden work, cannot work &c &c. He and I were to ride together; but he came this morning before breakfast with an excuse. He is to dine here tomorrow with Mazzini. Craik is down stairs at this moment (sunset,—a blistering east-wind heat); I must hurry down to him. William Cunningham came to tea one evening! Seemingly quite strong again, even fat; after being, as he says, given up by everybody, even by himself, and having the feeling of death for some days close to his very heart. He desired especially to be remembered to you. His mother is said to be in a dying condition. The Stimabile hints obscurely that Cm will go into the Church. Possibly.3— Mrs Anthony is not going to Canada; she seems to have been in a very “raised” state of late, and is quite tired of Stimabiledom.— Enough dear Brother. Good be with you ever.— Your affectionate

T. Carlyle