April 1849-December 1849

The Collected Letters, Volume 24


JWC TO JOSEPH NEUBERG; 16 June 1849; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18490616-JWC-JN-01; CL 24: 69-70


Saturday [16 June 1849]

Thanks! dear Mr Neuberg—

Nothing could come more opportunely than those portraits! Not ten minutes before the parcel was delivered I had been saying to Mr C; “I wished somebody would give me some more heads; for I had nothing but landscapes and churches left to finish with!” In fact I used up my heads too fast—just as I have used up my own head—too fast—by a great deal—

I should have liked so much to have gone to you with John—and I am not at all sure, that, in spite of the looks and ejaculations of disappointment, which I am always hailed with, when I present myself anywhere without my husband—making visiting on my own basis really an effort of moral courage for me; am not at all sure that I will not some day follow in his track—and try whether you and your Sister will be as kind to me as you have been to him— In truth I am very unwell always in this turmoil of an existence and need to fly from it sometimes to save my life—I used to say my soul—but I rather think I have no soul any longer— My body however, I still know that I have, to my cost! And that needs to be carried into quiet places from time to time, to keep it what is called sane—never to say anything so hopeless as healthy. And so I only wait for my Husbands departure on his Irish tour to depart myself—into Space!— Where I will go, I have not quite made up my mind; but most likely it will be to Scotland—in which case why should not I go by Nottingham and spend a day with you? that is, if you happened to be at home at the time— Mr C talks of a fortnight hence but he never precises any thing till the last moment—and while here he cannot well be left alone; having never with all his cleverness been able to pick up housekeeping enough to pour out his own coffee in the morning without, firstly, boiling it over into the fire and secondly upsetting the remainder over the table cloth— If he go to Ireland at all, he will sail straight from London or Bristol, I believe—

Yours most kindly /

Jane Carlyle