The Collected Letters, Volume 25


TC TO JOHN FORSTER ; 5 July 1850; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18500705-TC-JF-01; CL 25: 113-114


Chelsea, 5 july, 1850—

Dear Forster,

Many thanks for your call and your Note, and all your goodness to me! The Examiner is excellent; nothing can be kinder, or shew a more friendly meaning towards me;—and, you may believe me, this is all the good, or nearly all, the brotherliest critic could do me in these sorrowful operations of mine!1 If indeed any critic or person can do me any good or even any real ill in them at all? Alas, there is no help for a poor devil in such cases; he must try if he can welter thro', and get done with it; that will help him, that will be a kind of refuge for him!

On the whole, the people greedily read and buy these Pamphlets, and violently abuse them, I believe: this means that the people take their physic, and that it is physic to them: what other response could be expected or desired by me?2

The best is, I am on the last Pampht now,—thank Heaven! And were it once well off my hands,—then surely there shall be another soiree at L. I. Fields,3 and a friendly pipe of tobacco offered to the Lares there, along with Craik or whom you will. Be that a fixed point. But we must have done first,—say ten days hence or so; for the summer heat is frightful on me; and with that and other bother all strength is withered out of my poor soul and poor body alike.

And so good night, dear Forster. I had other things to say, but a man has come in, and I must cut short.

Poor Sir Robert,—alas, alas! No public event, for many years, or ever in my life, has seemed to me more tragical. I will not quarrel with you now for defending even Russell:—God only knows what course things now will take; if there be not below decks wisdom of which one sees no symptoms above!

Good be with you, dear Forster

Yours ever truly /

T. Carlyle