August 1846-June 1847

The Collected Letters, Volume 21


TC TO JEAN CARLYLE AITKEN; 3 June 1847; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18470603-TC-JCA-01; CL 21:223-224.


Chelsea, 3 june, 1847—

Dear Jean,—Thanks for your good little Letter, which would deserve a longer reply than I can give it at present,—with Jane sitting waiting for me (in the prospect of an evening walk) till I end!— Poor old Barney: I wore his stockings, all winter, in the house; and now he has departed, with due “Irish wake,” and we shall see his old face no more!1

The American Magazines did not come back in time for the Bookseller; wherefore I now cut out the Review portion, and send it by post.2 When you have read it, let my Mother see it; that is nearly all I have to advise on the subject. There was another “Article on Cromwell,” not without some value, in the Westminster, which also I meant to cut out, and send;3 but today I cannot find it in the house, and think somebody must have borrowed it: if it turn up by and by, I will take another opportunity.— Your little sentence about the “Nashville Newspaper” and what follows is not intelligible to any of us: so we fancy the Nashville Newspaper never arrived here (for I have no recollection of it), or at least that we had missed the piece you allude to.4 The latter, I rather think, is the more probable: but never mind it either way.

Jenny and our Mother we suppose to be got or getting under way for Scotsbrig about this time. The change into the country will be grateful, if your weather is like ours. We have sun in abundance; and while the west wind blows all is bright as diamonds: for a day or two we have had east, which is dimmer and still very hot; however we must not complain, for every day of it brings the poor man's loaf a little down! All people are gladdening themselves in the prospect of a great harvest; most useful to all.

For about a week now we have had Miss Jewsbury (from Manchester), who wrote a Novel two years ago, and is a kind of lioness here: a very gentle, shrewd, affectionate, thin little woman; with whom Jane was guest last autumn once. “Geraldine Jewsbury, Authoress of Zoe” (which under favour, is somewhat of a dud, tho' with sense in it too): she creates somewhat of a racket in our quiet home here;—and especially calls out the gallant faculties of the Doctor, we can perceive! He has her off to the Theatre this evening; he is very assiduous in his escort of her up and down, poor fellow,—being somewhat in want of a job at any rate. Jane looks quizzically a little upon him: but whether he intends anything farther I do not in the least guess,—not indeed could I judge or advise, if I did. Silence, silence; let the fruit (if any) ripe itself! Poor fellow, I really believe, unless he marry he will never do anything. We shall see.— Write me another word about my Mother, dear Jean. I can add nothing more. These Papers are properly for James, I suppose. Ever yours

T. Carlyle