April 1848-March 1849

The Collected Letters, Volume 23


TC TO ALEXANDER J. SCOTT ; 5 August 1848; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18480805-TC-AJS-01; CL 23: 86-87


Chelsea, 5 Augt, 1848—

Dear Scott,

A practical, humane, and very intelligent Country Gentleman, a Mr Spedding of the Cumberland region, transmits me the enclosed Excerpt from the Times, with eager desire to have some farther light in regard to it,—some account of the success of the Project there indicated.1 The principal question would be, Do the ouvriers [workers] actually earn their franc and half daily under those conditions, or are they merely paid so much daily, and made very miserable in the process? If the former should turn out to be the answer, it would be a great fact for Spedding, and for me, who are continually preaching that method of proceeding with our own Paupers, as the real point at which to begin the “organisation of Labour”2 here at home. I should like very well to know.

As there is nobody in France of whom I could conveniently ask the question, and I am somewhat at a loss how to proceed, it strikes me that there is perhaps possibility of getting an answer thro' some of your Parisian connexions, which are of a more recent date than mine. I beg you to make inquiry if you can, and let me know the result. If you cannot, the question must lie in abeyance for the present.

We have never seen you at Chelsea yet; but as we are here thro' the whole of August, I will certainly come and try in your quarter3 if you do not make your appearance soon in ours. Why not Monday Evg next? We are at home whether you call or not.

Yours ever truly /

T. Carlyle—

If you see M. Chopin, pray offer him my hearty regards. I hope we shall get some language to speak in by and by, and then get into more plentiful communication.4 An excellent, gentle, much-suffering human soul, as I can at once see without language.