The Collected Letters, Volume 26


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE; 5 August 1851; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18510805-TC-JAC-01; CL 26: 119-120


Malvern, 5 Augt, 1851—

Dear Brother,—Thanks for your kind and pleasant Note of this morning. We got the Nation (forwarded by Postie) yesterday morng; the other Papers, by you, last night. It will clearly be better, since you do not read the Leader, that Bevis our Newsman be instructed to post it on Saturday; that will bring it to us next morning. The man (or mannikin) “Bevis” lives in Church Street:1 but if you speak a word to Postie, that will do.— Thanks also for your offer of the map: I meant to buy one on Saturday, but could n't get out; send me yours according to your good intention, any day.

Item I had to request you to go upstairs to my bedroom; to look there in lookingglass drawer which is to your right hand: there among old pill-boxes, bits of wash leather and etceteras (which pray respect and leave), you will find a small coil of brass wire, wrapt in paper; cut me off a good pipe's-length of said wire, and send it coiled along with the map, That is all that I want,—for this post. I did pack such a bit of wire in my portmanteau; but it had come out with my clothes, had fallen on the floor, and been carried away to ruin. I write to you, rather than ask about it at all.

We continue to do bravely here: Jane improving in every respect, by mere sunny quiet and fresh air; I ditto,—at least in every respect except sleep, for the nocturnal noises (dirty little snappages and cracklings, breaking the grand silence of the scene) are still hard upon me. But the gallant Doctor shifts me this night into a better as well as quieter bedroom; and there I do calculate of sleeping nobly. For really I required only perfect quiet for that object last night; and in a night or two, I know, I shall not be so skittish on that head.— The water treatment has now fairly begun in earnest: Packing at 6½ a. m. (this operation I don't dislike at all; one gets very hot and quiet directly); sit bath at 12 (now waiting for me); ditto at 5 p. m.,—this is a very strange, but I do think a useful and potent kind of operation! A modicum of tobacco at my own discretion; the like of good tea, twice daily; excellent plain dinner (where I am tacitly expected to refuse all wine) at 2½ p. m.: really a most wholesome species of regimen and procedure; and quite comfortable, could I only sleep. I take due walking in the intervals; saunter about the grounds too even in my readings: and in fine spend most of my day in the open air. I really think it is likely to do me some good. The Doctor will not hear of our quitting his house “for Lodgings” (as we politely had to attempt); no, no,—he lets us beautifully alone too, and in fact seems to me a very fine fellow, and likely to continue very useful here.

I wrote to my Mother: I said perhaps you wd send your Note (whh contained more description): yesterday I further sent a small note to Jean. If they are coming up to London, they are to make towards your present quarters, and let me hear beforehand.—

To Helps I wish zealously well; but—am hardly sorry to have missed him! The other Note is from Maccall, and worth nothing. Adieu dear Brother.

T. C.

I have seen Scott, who is very dour, taciturn, suspicious-like, but stronger in body than expected. With his foolish hoohing woman.2 I found him radically worse than silence [word illegible].

2 p.m. in my new room (a very quiet-looking one).— By the shifting of my things hither, the pipe-wire has turned up, sound and safe! So never mind that.

I have had a considerable walk, in the hot clean wind; met by Jane and Mrs. Scott as I came back. I hope to sleep well tonight!—

Jane bids me say, if any Letters for Bölte come to the house, you are to put them by, all together, in some drawer.

That is all, for the second time.— No, not yet quite! Send on the Tablet3 direct to Dobbie: I never read a word of it.