April 1849-December 1849

The Collected Letters, Volume 24


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE; 15 September 1849; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18490915-TC-JAC-01; CL 24: 233-234


Scotsbrig, 15 Septr, 1849—

Dear Brother,—Isabella, by way of exonerating herself from a promise of her own, begs me to write a Letter to you in her stead: a useful counter-change of activities, which I am bound to indulge her in; she herself having already been very busy in various exertions for my behoof again since I arrived here.— By this same post I write also to Jane, whose last Letter I have just got; but to her the Liverpool Post-Office will yield nothing tomorrow, I think, tho' to you at Seaforth it will: which is another argument, if other were wanted, for writing to you.

I came to Scotsbrig last night (Friday) about half past 9 p.m. or later; not anticipated, but cordially welcomed; no conveyance but one's feet,— Minto, however, took charge of the Luggage, and at 10 this morng it was all here. A light shone from our Mother's window, as I approached last night,—stalking thro' the country like a ghost;—all the world was not yet in bed; Isabella made me a jolly bowl of porridge, upon the strength of which I slept soundly, and so today am very quiet and well; right glad that I am got so far towards home again. At Edinr I found nobody whatever but the Jeffries, and them in a very feeble way, clearly not in need of strangers quartered on them; so, as Edinr otherwise seemed empty, I said good-night to it, and bowled myself away.

Everything seems pretty right here; our good Mother looks quite in her usual average of health; Jamie too makes no special complaint even when questioned, but professes still to be a little thought weaker than when this ill turn overtook him: he is decidedly of mind that his ailment will never mend of itself; and seems to agree with me that you should go with him to Edinr directly after the harvest is done, and have the proper operation performed. It will give me great satisfaction indeed to hear that it is done; and really it strikes me in my ignorance that delays, continuing the irritation &c, might prove detrimental one knows to what degree, but cannot in any degree prove beneficial. Pray think of this.

The “dying Cow,” I am to inform you, has by some oblique path “warstled [staggered] down to the bottom of the Linn,” and is there standing among bushes waiting its end,—poor dumb-creature, nobler of mind than many a speaking one, I think! For the rest, the Harvest-weather is mainly good; crops fast getting housed about Edinr and in the Perthshire region; and Jamie's three Mowers here are all busy in their calling; everything around them nearly ripe.— I think of getting home soon; straight road,—or if I knew a good course to Nottingham, perhaps with a bend in by that for one night. Jane will probably only precede me by a few days. A Letter from you here is very welcome as you know. Ever your affectionate

T. C.