April-December 1844

The Collected Letters, Volume 18


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE ; 1 November 1844; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18441101-TC-JAC-01; CL 18: 255-256


Chelsea, 1 Novr, 1844—

My dear Brother,

Thanks for your kind Note, which we had today. We shall be very glad to see you here again; so soon as you are all ready let a signal warn us.— Perhaps you will stay a day or two at Liverpool; with the Chorleys, the Paulets &c &c? Miss Jeannie is in Fife with her Brother, which ought to be a kind of grief! What the Chorleys are doing I know not. The Paulet are at home I believe; she as bright and cheery as ever, he in the same old mouse-eaten condition,—like a man nibbled by mice; and very inarticulate in his finishings every way,—but good too! Geraldine's Novel is actually at press: I am told great things about the spirit, the &c &c—but have declined looking at it hitherto.— — A wonderful affair of Birkenhead Docks, enough in the eyes of the Liverpool people to shake the Earth's axis out of joint, has been going on in that quarter.1 I declined attending their “Festival”; and some blockhead, imagining I must be dying of regret and curiosity, shoots off at me in succession either four or five monstrous newspapers treating of it (I sent you a fresh one today), of which I seldom read one syllable. Another huge Wen of Mammonism:—I know several things more beautiful than it that have not so many bumpkins to fling up their caps about them!

You will hardly know the King's Road when you come back to us,— for we too are growing like a Wen. So many new houses have sprung up since you went, and are all full of shopkeepers, of Ladies' worsted-work &c &c,—and look quite sedate, as if already come to the years of discretion! What is far better than all, we have got a flag pavement, very nearly complete now, all the way from Sloane Square, which is an improvement for us.

On Tuesday the Package of Duds went off to Pickford's:2 I suppose it is in Liverpool before now; getting across the Solway perhaps at this very time. I am not sure but the Address was to Jamie (for it was written in great haste); however the Package itself was meant for my Mother to Jamie's care. She will keep what is of any use to herself in the cargo,—and divide the rest equitably, or as she sees good: it will be a mighty enterprise. Only I think there is a thick coat which I meant for Jamie (unless he prefer the other) with black waistcoat and choice of the breeks [trousers];—also a pair of old boots, once your gift to me. Some Books too let him have his will of; they are not in my Mother's way I think.— And so good luck to the duds!— — I wish we heard of Daltonhook3 being well taken!

Today I have sat stiffly enough copying Oliver's fourth speech with illuminations;—yet have made indifferent way. However, it is now towards 10 p.m.; I must out for a little more walking. Best good night to you all!

Poor Mrs Anthony Sterling has gone out of her mind! “Hysterical Monomania,” the Doctor calls it, and says it will soon end; but they that know her better shake their heads.— Miss Martineau is sunk to the lips in animal magnetism; actually very greatly mended of her ailment, can “walk out five miles” &c:4 but the upshot for her also gar bedenklich [very precarious]!— Adieu, dear Brother

T. C.