August-December 1842

The Collected Letters, Volume 15


TC TO MARGARET A. CARLYLE ; 5 August 1842; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18420805-TC-MAC-01; CL 15: 4-6


Chelsea, Friday Evg, 5 Augt / 1842—

My dear Mother,

By Jean's hand on the back of the Courier, I incline to infer that you are perhaps come back from your bathing, and are at Dumfries; at all events, I know James1 will forward this to you, and therefore I write before the week pass. There came, this morning, a Note from Jamie at Scotsbrig in answer to one of mine:2 this also I will enclose, tho' the contents of it will probably not be all new to you. The day before yesterday I got a poor old dud of an American Newspaper; I think it must be from Jenny.3

Jamie says the weather with you has been warm, of late weeks: perhaps therefore you actually had it good and favourable at the Seashore; tho' I was often pitying you, for here we had it cold with strong wind from the North; and not till four days ago did it become handsomely hot,—which it now is in good truth; hotter than we have ever had it this year. Jamie speaks of a decidedly favourable prospect of crop, which is excellent news to me. It will not be a plentiful harvest generally, I doubt; but a fair one, and perhaps well got.

I continue boring along here, “under ground,” as I call it; I shall get above ground one day! My health keeps better than usual for a London summer; indeed I find it far the suitablest way I have this year followed, to shrink into my shell, and keep away from the fry [disturbance] as nearly as possible altogether. Yesterday I had to go into the City; and returned quite sick with the dusty grinding crowd of mortals, and the thick close heat and whirl.— I am for being off tomorrow, with a Son of Lord Monteagle's, a very good young man who has invited me kindly, on a kind of free excursion which is to last till Tuesday.4 I think perhaps I shall take a little more of country, in a small way, before the Sun altogether leave us.

Jane is, at length, actually getting ready for her visit to Mrs Buller.5 She is to set off on Wednesday morning: it is a ride of some eight hours; and they meet her at the end of it with their little carriage. Mrs Buller and she get on admirably together; and the place is very quiet, and the way of life composed: I feel sure it will do her some good. She will stay perhaps a fortnight or more. Little Jeannie (the Liverpool Cousin) is to continue here till she come back, and then goes, I believe, very shortly homewards. She seems loth to quit us, and we have liked her altogether well, poor little bairn.——— I met Jack driving his carriage two in hand, prosperously, one evening on the streets! Ogilby was sitting by him, and Miss Scott behind,6 and in the rear of all a Flunky: they all seemed very sleepy except Jack

Dear Mother, I must out now, and walk a little bit: you will not quarrel with this little scrap, little tho' it be. Take care of yourself till you get home again! I hope you do not forget the PORTRAIT,7 James and you!— Adieu dear Mother.

Ever your affectionate,

T. Carlyle