The Collected Letters, Volume 27


TC TO JOSEPH NEUBERG ; 25 August 1852; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18520825-TC-JN-01; CL 27: 251-252


Scotsbrig, 25 Augt / 1852—

Dear Neuberg,

I have got, exactly in the nick of time, your friendly and comfortable letter this day; a great reinforcement and encouragement, for which I owe you many thanks,—and an immediate reply, first of all.

Reflexion had taught me gradually after writing that dolorous irresolute Jeremiad, that on the whole I should have to go; that it was shameful not to go,—and in short that I must.

Accordingly things are all in progress, the Passport among others since your Letter came;—and if nothing misgo I am to be on board the Leith Steamer on the evening of Saturday first (28th of the month), “some time between 4 & 8 p.m.” (till I hear more exactly), and thereafter in Rotterdam “Hôtel Pays-Bas,” as soon as we can. This was already fixed (all but the Hôtel); and is now, of course, doubly so. How long we take to Rotterdam I do not yet learn,—our Steamer calls nowhere, as some do;—I guess perhaps 40 and odd hours; and reckon upon Monday 30th, if nothing sinister befal.— For the rest, I decide on Bonn, Frankfurt and the Thüringen route; on Bonn, and a little space of rest and consultation before all. If you have a Letter lying for me at the above said Hôtel (Rotterdam), it will be a comfort on my arrival. I shall likely incline towards the swiftest conveyance up to Coblentz & your country; yet could rather wish to take the Haag1 along with me too. Besides probably all the steamers, for that monday, will be gone before my arrival. Tuesday is my likeliest day of farther advance. I will write to you from Rotterdam if it be possible, whether I find a Letter from you or not. But I do not advise you to come down to Coblentz in search of me, or to stir at all from Bonn till I drop anchor there. Once in the Steamer in the Rhine stream, I shall have nothing to do, but sit silent and smoke,—looking out for the Drachenfels,2 for Wesel (Castle of Moers will not be visible I know, where Voltaire and Fk first met),3 and best of all for Bonn, and a friend's chair to sit down upon, and do nothing!—

As to the Passport, I tore open a Letter to my Wife, and set her to work according to your better plan: Lord Ashburton, just home from Germany, Darwin &c are in London, as an old Foreign-Office Passport of mine is; and I trust to her own savoir-faire for succeeding with such help. At Edinr or else at Rotterdam I hope to find the Passport required: two hours later, and it wd hardly have been possible,—the nick of time indeed!

As to money, I will bring a few guineas in my pocket,—some kind of negociation with an Edinr Bank for a “circular letter” is in danger of failing for want of time on Saturday:—if it do, I will borrow from you, with whom already I have an account,—and pay honestly on reaching England!— And so Adieu for this night. I think there is nothing needful more; and I am in sad haste.

Yours ever

T. Carlyle