July 1847-March 1848

The Collected Letters, Volume 22


TC TO RALPH WALDO EMERSON ; 13 November 1847; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18471113-TC-RWE-01; CL 22: 155-156


Chelsea, 13 Novr, 1847—

Dear Emerson,

Your Book-parcels were faithfully sent off, directly after your departure: in regard to one of them I had a pleasant visit from the proprietor in person,—the young Swedenborgian Doctor, whom to my surprise I found quite an agreeable accomplished secular young gentleman, much given to “progress of the species” &c &c; from whom I suppose you have yourself heard.1 The wandering Umbrella, still short of an owner, hangs upon its peg here, without definite outlook. Of yourself there have come news, by your own Letter, and by various excerpts from Manchester Newspapers.2 Glück zu [Luck to you]!—

This morning I received the Enclosed, and send it off to you without farther response. Mudie, if I mistake not, is some small Bookseller in the Russell-Square region;3 pray answer him, if you think him worthy of answer. A dim suspicion haunts me that perhaps he was the Republisher (or Pirate) of your first set of Essays:4 but probably he regards this as a mere office of untutored friendship on his part. Or possibly I do the poor man wrong by misremembrance? Chapman could tell.

I am sunk deep here, in effete Manuscripts, in abstruse meditations, in confusions old and new; sinking, as I may describe myself, thro' stratum after stratum of the Inane,—down to one knows not what depth! I unfortunately belong to the Opposition Party in many points, and am in a minority of One. To keep silence, therefore, is among the principal duties at present.

We had a call from Bancroft, the other evening. A tough Yankee man; of many worthy qualities more tough than musical; among which it gratified me to find a certain small under-current of genial humour, or as it were hidden laughter, not noticed heretofore.

My Wife and all the rest of us are well; and do all salute you with our true wishes, and the hope to have you here again before long. Do not bother yourself with other than voluntary writing to me, while there is so much otherwise that you are obliged to write. If on any point you want advice, information, or other help that lies within the limits of my strength, command me, now and always. And so Good be with you; and a happy meeting to us soon again. Yours ever truly,

T. Carlyle