The Collected Letters, Volume 25


JWC TO MARY RUSSELL ; 27 February 1850; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18500227-JWC-MR-01; CL 25: 34-35


Wednesday 27 [February 1850] 5 Cheyne Row

My dear Mrs Russell

It flashed thro' my head while lying in bed this morning, “Old Mary's money not sent yet”!1 I am over head and ears in “good intentions” today, having bethought me of other forgotten things besides old Mary (have you ever days when all your sins of ommission and commission come into your head like a Congregation trooping into Church?) So I must not spend much time in writing—but I cannot send the order without a few lines that you may not think the hard winter has killed me or taken away my memory. Cold as the weather has been I have not been confined to the house this winter except for a week—and then it was more from being afraid than hurt.Well I cannot call myself; for when I have not a cold I have other things still I am thankful when I can keep afoot and look after my small affairs—

I have not stirred from home since I was in Scotland2 Mr C went for a week to the Grange but I did not accompany him— indeed I feel to have had both motion and emotion enough last autumn to suffice me for a long time— Perhaps Mr C may be in Scotland this coming month You may have seen by the newspapers that one party of the Aberdeen students want him for their Lord Rector—the others wanting to have the Duke of Argyle who will suit the purpose better I should think— if Mr C be elected; he must in common civility to his admiring BOYS go and make them a speech—and come back again—a long journey for so brief a purpose! and at an inconvenient time, when he is bothering with his pamphlets So he rather wishes the Duke may be the happy man.

The great delight of my life at present is the little dog I think I told you of— it was stolen for a whole day but escaped back to me on its own four legs— Mr C asked while it was a-missing what will you be inclined to give the dog stealers for bringing it back to you?” (Dog stealing being a regular trade here)—and I answered passionately with a flood of tears “my whole half-years allowance”!—so you may fancy the fine way I am in!— Lady Ashburton has given me the name of Agrippina the wit of which you wont see unless I told you my dogs name was Nero3

I want you to do something for me—if you can—I saw at Auchtertool a slip of the Templand sweetbriar that had taken root finely4—brought by one of these Ladies I saw— if at the proper time for slipping you could get me a little bit and send it by post I should be very grateful I brought or rather had sent from Haddington5 a slip of the Jessamin that grew over our dining room window and another of a Templand rose which my Mother took with her to Sunny Bank6 and both are growing to my great satisfaction— All good be with you dear Mrs Russel your ever affectionate

Jane Carlyle