August 1857-June 1858

The Collected Letters, Volume 33


TC TO EDWARD CHAPMAN ; 9 June 1858; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18580609-TC-EC-01; CL 33: 236-237


Chelsea, 9 june, 1858—

Dear Sir,

Yesterday I sent away the last Proof Slips of Friedrich; my work in them all done: they will come back as revises probably on Friday; and, at the end of this week, the long sorrow I have had with that business will be ended—thank Heaven forevermore! Larkin called, one evening, with two of his maps in a beautiful state of readiness; his Index too is well forward; and the third map (properly second, for the other two are small and on one leaf)1 quite ready for etching: I have set him off for a week on some other business of mine; but there will be no danger of his not being ready (especially if you touch him up in the interim) long weeks and months before that “first of September,”—after which I hope the publication is not to be.

The reason of my writing today is more specially this. There will be about 700 pages in vol II, there were 630 odd in vol I; with Index and the rest, there will be nearly 1400 pages in the two. Now I cannot but perceive that this is three volumes (good measure) instead of two; and what I propose is, That you should consider them as, in fact tho' not in form, three, to me and to other parties; and in short, put such a price upon them as will enable you to pay me (for one party) as if they were actually three. I am aware that this is contrary to the letter of our Bargain;2 but if it be a fact that the Book has not been swollen out with surplusage or misworking of any kind, and has gone to three,—I think you will admit that it is conformable to the spirit of our Bargain;—and that equity would grant it, tho' law will not.

If you do, we can say on the titlepage “History &c in four volumes”;—and the sequel shall be (if I can live to do it) in the same size and form; two volumes (same price as these two). If not, I shall in self-defense have to print the Sequel in three Volumes (400 pages each):—and in any case, neither this First Part nor any other shall again be printed in fewer than three volumes;—work to be in six volumes in all, first editn, in Four, if you consent to what I propose; and in Five, if the contrary, which I will not anticipate.3

As to the letter of the Bond, I need not repeat, there can be no disputing. But as to the real equity and intrinsic purport of it,—I have had this notion in my head, during these late weeks since I had more leisure to consider; and I could not but decide on formally making the proposal before winding up. Pray consider it, too, from my point of view; and answer when you have settled. I shall not be off for a week or so,—tho' truly there ought to be no loitering in such weather as we have— Yours always truly

T. Carlyle