October 1845-July 1846

The Collected Letters, Volume 20


TC TO MARGARET A. CARLYLE ; 17 June 1846; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18460617-TC-MAC-01; CL 20: 206-208


Chelsea, 17 june / 1846—

My dear Mother,

Here is a Letter from Alick1 which came yesterday; it should have been forwarded to you last night, but something came in the way, and your satisfaction comes a day later than due. I will try to take care another time. Poor Alick is very well; and, I think, in a good mood of mind too, very serious and very diligent; making a fair figure in that new home of his. I wrote to him by the last Packet as the Dr requested: I inclosed your good little slip of writing which you had made for me;2 a welcome certificate to him, as it had been to me. I hope the hot weather does not hurt you, but that you continue as well as you were. I have had no news at all out of Dumfriesshire since that small Note of yours arrived here.

This day, I believe, they have actually published that weary Book of mine: after much haggling and delay, we have at length got so far. There will be a Copy for you by the next month's Parcel; a Supplement for all the others that have already got copies: I have also marked a Copy of the new Book for Jack. The people have but to pay me, and then I have done with it. We have two other Books (new editions of Books) to bargain about; and then I am loose from them. Yesterday I had a Note from Emerson too about my American Books; I expected the American Bookseller3 today that we might have entered upon our negociation, but he has not come: that once ended, I gather an immense quantity of tagrags as it were into a heap, and fling them all away from me at last. All this Spring and Summer I have had that kind of work; revising old Books, sorting, settling &c &c: rather cobbling than real generous work. I shall be very glad to be free of it, and look round me in composure for a while again.

Our weather here has grown terribly hot; really “gay ill to do with”;— today is the hottest of all, wind easterly, Sun blazing like a furnace,—I do not venture out at all till evening today, being otherwise not quite so well as usual. Indeed if we have not rain soon, it will be good for us to get away into the Country somewhere; which indeed, so soon as I have fairly got my affairs winded up, all my Books settled &c, it is my purpose to do. We have not yet settled any place: but I think the Paulet quarters at Seaforth look somewhat the most inviting,—and then it is but a little sail into a Scotland after! We shall see before long.— I have sent away my Horse yesterday to be sold. There was no riding possible except in the evening and morning, neither of which suited me; the Beast too was taking [harm]4 with the hot5 Confined stable they have here; and I thinking to get away out of this, far away: on the whole I shall be better rid of him;—he was a terrible expense, and a great fash besides all.

Everybody here is agog about a change of Ministry, concerning which there is much rumour but no certainty at all.6 Peel's Corn-bill, it is expected, will be carefully saved; and then, it is said, the Whigs will come in again, and Peel will go. But even that is not entirely certain;—and at any rate I think the Whigs will not stay long, and Peel will come back again. I consider him, with all his faults, a man worth any dozen of them.

What is the Doctor doing? He might write me a Letter at any rate, and say!— Jane salutes you all. Good b'ye, dear Mother: I will write soon again; nay I hope to see you, and all of them again, before very long! Give my kind affection to all from youngest to eldest. Does the Dr take you out to drive? Avoid the extreme heat, for you too I think must have it very hot: the evening will be cheerfullest for you, and do you real good. Take care of yourself, dear Mother.

That Letter came the other day from certain people: I think they must be statuaries or Stucco-men;7 I answered them as faithfully as I could.— You can tell Jack the Countess Hahn-Hahn is here and a great lioness at present:8 well enough, but can “di' tha naither ill na' guid!” Adieu my dear Mother.

Ever your affectionate

T. Carlyle