1824- 1825

The Collected Letters, Volume 3


TC TO CHARLES TAIT; 13 May 1825; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18250513-TC-CTA-01; CL 3:324-325.


Mainhill, Ecclefechan, 13th May, 1825

My dear Sir,

I hope Mr Mitchell1 did actually call on you on Thursday, as he had promised to me, and explain the unlucky cause of my absence on the preceding evening. Perhaps this failure on my part may be the means of introducing Mr M. to your custom and acquaintance; an arrangement that will give me much pleasure for the sake of both parties, Mr M. being a person of great worth as well as classical learning, and likely from his merits in the New Academy to become a rising man among you.2

The best apology which I can make for my quick retreat is to send you my plan of our advertisement, the only piece of business that had any right to delay me. I am still of opinion that your Brother and you will be able to concoct some thing far more fitted for the eye of the market than any thing you can expect from me: mean while here is what I have devised, and what may do in fault of better:

German Novellists [underscored twice]; a series of Tales, Romances and Novels, selected from the works of Goethe, Schiller, Wieland, Tieck[,] Paul Richer, Lafontaine, Musäus, Hoffman[,] La Motte Fouqué and others; with introductory essays, critical & biographical; the whole intended to convey within a moderate compass some accurate impression of the chief Writers in that department of German Literature.

“Three volumes will be ready in November.”

This of course you can alter according to your own good pleasure: I shall be anxious for a sight of it so soon as you have opportunity.

I have said “November,” tho' I can scarce promise positively. However I should wish to go to press some time about September; and if my health will allow me, as there is considerable probability, I hope so to manage. I have to thank you for Tieck's Phantasus,3 a work I wanted tho' I called it by another name: had I Lafontaine and Hoffman, I should now be pretty well supplied. If Mr Buchanan, or any of your other friends, can furnish these or any books which you might reckon useful, I make no doubt you will send them without delay. My present stock will reach me to-morrow; and I calculate on beginning Werter next week.4

With best respects to your Brother, believe me always,

My Dear Sir, / Sincerely yours, /

Thomas Carlyle—