The Collected Letters, Volume 25


TC TO GEORGE JOHNSTON ; 29 August 1850; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18500829-TC-GJ-01; CL 25: 181


Scotsbrig 29 Aug., 1850

Dear Doctor

Here is a hasty note to satisfy your friendly anxieties about me; my hurry and incapacity for writing to-day are very great.

I had a beautiful, saddish but altogether pacific, solitary and improving ride to Birmingham that evening and got into the Hotel about 11 p.m., actually disposed to eat some slight article—an egg with a crumb of toast as it chanced. On this, moreover, in spite of noises equal to the sack of cities, I fell asleep in an otherwise excellent bedroom, and so held on, in a most beneficial manner, for above six hours.

The next day, of course, I was greatly better; and so it was all plain sailing to Liverpool. Of my sail homewards I will say nothing except to caution all mortals against that mode of conveyance so long as there exists any other; and merely add that I got home safe and sound after all, and found my good old mother and the rest of them well here and flung my dirty troubles off me for a season and except on compulsion, have done nothing except smoke tobacco and sit silent ever since.

All things look well here; crops excellent, all except blighted potatoes everywhere; harvest busily going on.

Your kinsfolk, so far as country rumour goes, are all understood to be well and in their usual course of peaceable industry.

Brother John is not quite here at present; for a week past he has been staying at Newfield with A. C. Corrie, where terrible affliction and fatality prevail, most of the family sick, two daughters already dead of dysentry (the second, Miss Corry, only last night) and others still dangerously ill; a most distressed house.

God bless you, dear old friend, my scrap of paper is run out, and I have not room to thank you in words (nor is that necessary) for all your friendliness to me in Glo'ster. Fair befall your household and you and may we meet again before long.

Yours ever truly, /

T. Carlyle