April 1849-December 1849

The Collected Letters, Volume 24


JWC TO JOHN. A. CARLYLE; 10 December 1849; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18491210-JWC-JAC-01; CL 24: 308-309


Monday [10 December 1849]

My dear John

I ought to tell you that I am about again—that is to say when it does not rain—and that again is to say at rare intervals— The weather is in fact detestable—but it will mend in time—which cant be said of all the detestable things one knows.— The chief news to tell you is that I have got a dog!—and can hardly believe my senses!— I should never have mustered courage to risk such a great step, had not Dilberoglue the Greek I know in Manchester, having heard me talking about my wish for a dog which was merely a “dont you wish you may get it”? actually, on his return to Manchester, set about seeking one and fired it off at me by railway—and so well has he sought and found, that here is a little dog perfectly beautiful and queerlooking, which does not bark at all! nor whine, more than if it were deaf and dumb!! it sleeps at the foot of my bed without ever stirring or audibly breathing all night long and never dreams of getting up till I get up myself—it follows me like my shadow and lies in my lap—and at meals when animals are apt to be so troublesome it makes no sort of demonstration beyond standing on its hind legs! Not only has Mr C no temptation to “kick his foot thro it” but seems getting quite fond of it and looks flattered when it musters the hardihood to leap on his knee So this is one small comfort achieved for it is really a comfort to have something alive and cheery and fond of me always there— — My fear now is not that Mr C will put it away but that I shall become the envy of surrounding dog-stealers! Anthony Sterling says “it is much too valuable a dog not to get itself stolen fast enough”— Well! I can but get a chain to fasten it to my arm and keep a sharp look out—

My cold is away again—but oh dear! “my interior” is always very miserable—and nothing that I do or forbear seems to make the least difference— The worst is the dreadful pressure on my faculties—there are kinds of illness that one can work under—but this sort of thing that I go on with makes every thing next to impossible for me—

Mr Neuberg is always lamenting your absence—he comes occasionally and plays chess with me, and I generally beat him— What is it that makes that man so heavy?—he is clever and well informed and wellbred and kind and has even some humour and yet—when he goes away every time I yawn and yawn and feel so dished!

No thoughts of coming back yet? I miss you very bad

Mr C bids me tell you to cut out his “trees of Liberty” from the Nation and send it back—

Ever yours lovingly

Jane W C

Kindest regards to your Mother and Isabella and Jamie— I dont think you will get so well on with your translation there as here—