The Collected Letters, Volume 2


JBW TO THOMAS CARLYLE; 30 November 1823; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18231130-JBW-TC-01; CL 2:483-484.


[30 November 1823]

Dearest Friend

The dreaded communication is made and there is no objection to our meeting. When I had read your letter I told my Mother its purport, and asked her, awkwardly enough, if you might come? “May he come!” she said after me, with a portentous smile, “If you can answer that question, I suppose it is quite unnecessary that I should be consulted”— What was her meaning think you? I declare ‘like Gods power she passeth all understanding’1— However it is understood that you are to come— So mount you Bucephalus on Friday2 morning (that it seems is the most agreeable day) and be here as soon as you and it like. You will stay till Sunday at all events, and longer if you can and if my Mother will. God grant she may get into good humour by the end of the week—with all her kindheartedness, she would put our Orator's “Roman daughter” herself in a most undutiful passion now and then.3 I declare if it were not that I know she loves me in her heart I should many a time be tempted to “bake me a bannock”4 and set away to “pass my fortune” in distant parts—but she could not want me tho' she thinks me a very worthless young lady so I must stay [where] I am. My dear wee Dr has been on another “weaver-shuttle” expedition to Moffat, and has fallen in with something like you on the top of a coach. He tells me you are very unwell—why did you hide this from me— I shall have him to prescribe for you when you are here— I wish to God you were better! The clock is striking five— My love to your Bother— Friday by twelve oclock

Yours for ever /

Jane Welsh