The Collected Letters, Volume 13


TC TO ALEXANDER CARLYLE ; 13 April 1841; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18410413-TC-AC-01; CL 13: 97-98


Fryston, Ferrybridge, Tuesday [13 April 1841]—

My dear Brother,

Since a penny will carry a Letter anywhither, it seems a pity that I should not tell you I am here, which perhaps you do not otherwise know. I have written to my Mother at Dumfries; but there is no saying whether they would send you any word about it. A Doncaster Newspaper, sent to Jamie, would be enigmatic rather than otherwise if you knew no more. Take one word from me therefore; a word of brotherly affection and remembrance if of nothing other. Poor old Ecclefechan! It is so strange to think of all your simple doings there, in such a whirl of things as this! Poor old Ecclefechan; dear to me, with the kind souls that are there and thereabouts; ever dear to me, go whither I may!

This place is in Yorkshire, in the region of Leeds, Hull and Wakefield; somewhat nearer you than it is to London. It is the Mansion of a young man of fortune, and of Literature withal, an M.P. &c, by name Richard Milnes, whom I have known since we came to live in London, a man whom I greatly like, and who likes me. These people fly all out of Town for some three weeks about this time, to what they call the “Easter holidays.” Being disappointed of Wight in the way you heard, and having still a boundless appetite for the country, Milnes also asking me, and offering as it were to take me, I found I ought to go; and so we bundled off on Monday gone a week by railway, and here I am for the seventh day now. We are a great family, with endless troops of flunkies, large dinners of Lords dames and squires, a most restless whirlpool of a concern; but I have a room of my own, a horse to ride, books to read; the fields are beautiful, the country almost like old Scotland; on the whole, it does me good, in spite of the lords and dinners. I am likely to be here or hereabouts for a week more yet: whither I shall go next is not made out yet; sometimes I think of Annandale, being already half-way or more, but the weather I fear is too cold yet. One thing only is is1 made out: that I do not mean to pass the summer in London; that, with all probability I can hope to see you all before long somehow or other.

Jack was to remove to Richmond, almost close on London and Chelsea, on Saturday last; I have written thither to him, but got no answer yet. A lame arm he had which rather hindered him in writing. He will likely hang about the region he is now in, off and on, for some time yet.

Jamie's Letter about the Farm came just before I left London. Tell him how anxious I am to hear of his success. It must be decided soon. Pray write, one of you, the moment anything is settled. If within a week of this date, send the Letter hither; after that, or indeed at any time, “Chelsea.”

I add not a word, but blessings to one and all of you. Good be ever in you and about you, dear Alick, and all your dear ones!— T. Carlyle

I will contrive to indicate by some Newspaper or the like, which way I go.—“Care of R. M. Milnes Esqr M.P. &c/Fryston/Ferrybridge”