The Collected Letters, Volume 27


TC TO JOHN A. CARLYLE ; 3 January 1852; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18520103-TC-JAC-01; CL 27: 1-2


Chelsea, 3 jany, 1852—

My dear Brother,

We got safe home yesterday afternoon,1 and I can wish you all a happy Newyear from our own hearth again, which latter is a very pleasant accompanying circumstance. The little Dog Nero stood on his hind legs, full of exuberant joy, to receive us; and for me too there has been no such pleasant day for the last three weeks! Not that we had not many things to be interested in, to be glad of and proud of, in the scene where we were: but the environment and all its arrangements suited and always suits me so ill, I require to be fairly out of it before I can clearly taste what was really useful and worthy in it. Heigho! It seems to me the saddest of all lives,—and very many lives are sad enough in this epoch of the world! But it is ending, it will not continue long; that is something. Coming to the Railway Station, we met some 20 or 30 stout young men of those parts roaming about, having fallen out of work, and farther on, about Woking region, are 20 or 30 thousand acres of waste land, in good climate, on dry bottom, the whole of whh are clearly reclaimable on good terms. But the rulers of the world hunt foxes, make bursts of parliamentary eloquence:—how can it ever come to good, all this!— — Thackeray and his two girls were with us:2 a sad tar-barrel of pure and impure combustibles, this Thy., now blazing off in a really ominous way! I had never seen him so well before. There is a great deal of talent in him, a great deal of sensibility,—irritability, sensuality, vanity without limit;—and nothing or little but sentimentalism and playacterism to guide it all with: not a good or well-found ship in such waters on such a voyage. In the Train we came upon Milnes and his Wife, just returning from Palmerston's,3 the theme now of all tittle-tattle that has nothing else to play upon. Milnes, himself looking fat and elderly, reported Paln to be “happy.”

Amid a crowd of rubbish found here was the inclosed Letter; item a Newspaper (cover is enclosed here) whh I suppose to be from Jenny's Husband;4 I had sent Jenny a Newspaper some weeks before. Let us take it thankfully as meaning that all is well there. Chapman's Review5 seems very flat indeed: my Mother and you shall have it in a day or two; Fraser shall go for my Mother on Monday. Is she still moderately well, the good dear Mother? We expect some word from you now before long. Best love and regards to all. In gt haste today— Yrs ever

T. Carlyle

Adamson6 marks on a money Letter I had sent for that he “will attend to what I say of Craigenputtoch”: you will hear from him soon. Thanks!—