The Collected Letters, Volume 13


TC TO MARGARET A. CARLYLE ; 22 September 1841; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18410922-TC-MAC-01; CL 13: 258-259


Chelsea Wednesday (22 Septr) / 1841—

My dear Mother,

Without loss of a post I write to put you out of [y]our1 anxieties about us. We arrived here this morning, along with the letters; that is to say at the railway-end about half past 4, and down to our door rather before 6;—all safe without accident or misventure of any kind. Jane did not sleep, nor I either, on the nights before Monday; accordingly she awoke with a very severe headache out of her last attempt at sleep, and was so miserably ill that we had to put off the business altogether for that day; I bathed another time; wandered about by the shore of the tempestuous sea, and passed another altogether quiet day. The weather was bad, which made me regret our delay less. Yesterday however found us road-ready, and the weather bright: we got off about half past nine; into Newcastle about 11, and there after some fiking [trouble] got upon a coach for Darlington (33 miles), which brought us into the York and London railway about half past 3; and once there, we had only to sit still. We thought of stopping for the night at York, and then at Derby 90 miles farther on; but our prospects of sleeping seemed so questionable, we decided rather to proceed. So here we are; all safe. Helen roused herself at the first pull of the bell; got us some tea, and washing-water; Jane took instantly to bed, and had to be awoke to take her tea: I got myself into bed about 9, and am just awoke after six hours of sleep. You see we are all in the way to do well.

Among a huge package of Books, messages, Letters &c, which lay waiting me, was this shortest of Notes from John. I had already written to him from Tynemouth; he has my Letter, I doubt not, before now.

The post-hour has struck; I have not a moment to lose; I shall even have to walk a mile and a half with this, that it may go off at all.

Adieu, therefore, dear Mother, for I will write again very soon.

Tell Jamie the harvest seemed to be nearly over from the time we got to York: the people were carrying some remnants of corn, and mowing their stubble: after York, we lost sight of it and of all things but the night with its stars and railway lanterns and officials. This morning it began raining when we arrived; a rather heavy shower of two hours. I fear poor Jamie and you have the weather bad again in Annandale.

We have often asked ourselves how poor Jenny is, whether her unfortunate husband actually got to sea or not? She must be of courage; all may yet go well. Our affection to one and all of you. Farewell, dear Mother.2

Yours ever /

T. Carlyle