April 1848-March 1849

The Collected Letters, Volume 23


TC TO MARGARET A. CARLYLE ; 31 August 1848; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18480831-TC-MAC-01; CL 23: 101-102


Chelsea, 31 Augt, 1848—

My dear Mother,

We are just on the point of setting off on our Hampshire expedition,—this is Thursday night, 10 o'clock, and we go tomorrow morning at 11;—but before shutting up for the night, I will write a single word to tell my dear Mother that such is the case; and that in about 2 days another little Letter may be expected from me, dated the Grange, if all go well.

Little Jeannie Welsh went off this morning, after rather a pleasant visit, for herself ‘I think, and for us. All day, of course, there has been nothing but sorrowful turmoil; packing, sorting, gathering tobacco and other stores &c &c. Our Trunks are now in a forward condition; and Jane indeed has set the whole house in travelling or absentee order,—for there are paperhangers, painters coming directly when we go, and things require to be locked out of their road. Alas, it is a sad weary business, this of shifting from place to place, and every year I grow swearer [more reluctant] to set about it. I think I would gladly give a five-pounds to be off from this journey altogether! But that will not do either; so we must go, and take the best care of ourselves we can.— How long we stay is not fixed at all; but I guess about 3 weeks, or perhaps a fortnight. There are Marquises of Landsdown ministers &c &c talked of;1 but I have found by experience they do not differ from little people, except in the clothing and mounting,—not to say that they are terribly troublesome with their flunkeys and strict fashions, over and above!

We had two bright beautiful days, and all the world rejoiced at the “taking up” of the weather; but, alas, this evening there arose a thunderstorm, loud and black for two hours, and there has fallen ever since an incessant deluge of rain! It is a sad outlook for the harvest; people are becoming very anxious about that,—especially taking the Irish potatoe into view. There is every appearance of a tragic winter again with that fatal people.2— — I have been a little out of order, in the bowel way, these three days; but feel as if I had got round again, and might perhaps be better for my fit.— — The Dr's Letter came; tell him not to give up the agitation for the Ecclefechan business,—by no means! I think he knows the Address of our new place; but at all events I hope to write in about 2 days. O dear good Mother, and all ye friends, good night, good night! T. Carlyle