January-October 1859

The Collected Letters, Volume 35


TC TO JOSEPH NEUBERG ; 25 April 1859; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18590425-TC-JN-01; CL 35: 82-83


Chelsea, 25 April, 1859—

Dear Neuberg,

Here is the Portrait-Catalogue1 (goes by this same Post) in a final conditn: I did not get it fairly re-examined till last night: A distinct cross (X) stands agt all the articles I now want out of it; the “?” marks, where negative, are (unless by omission) crossed out:—and for more distinctness, I enclose you the list as marked in pencil while I went on.— Several of those others I shd have liked to have: but they are extremely difficult to dispose of when got;—Borck, for example, my beautiful Borck, I am looking out for somebody to take it off my hand gratis: to me it is rather a minus quantity, tho’ so superior otherwise. Whisper nothing abt that, or the like, to the good Magnus!— I find there are just 2 Portraits (unless Ziethen's be excellt, and form a 3d) in the list now sent that are essential: Belling (the Anti-Swedish Genl), and Brühl of the many tailors;2 the latter especially, of whom I cd never see any Print whatever.——And now we will leave the chase of Frh-Soldier Prints:3 es geht nicht [it's impossible]; clearly enough there are none attainable to us; on this side, as on so many others, the answer is, “You must do without”!— “Blessed are they who can do without; for their talent will not be kept sleeping.”4

We are a little better here; my Wife very considerably, tho’ still in bed and as weak as water,—in fact I do not remember to have seen her in such a fit of overwhelming pain and weakness as had come over her on this occasion. I have gone about on my usual rounds, tho’ more as a shadow than a substance: seldom was there a more ineffectual heavy-laden week appointed me than last. I think my Cough is going, however; and I feel determined to have another bit of duel with my Evil Genius (namely my Prussian Problem, and be hanged to it!)—file, file steadily with the poorest implement upon your accursed slave-chain, you will get thro’ it at last, and out of the nasty degrading Galley where you have sat among the pots, and rowed, and been whipt, so long. Oh Heaven, Oh Heaven!

Come next sunday Evg if you hear nothing to the contrary.— Some day in the week, you might call at Wms & Norgate's (to whom I have sent a new message, with new “Yes, surely Yes!” for ansr), and try to ascertain what chance there is for the exquisite Adelung & his 10 quartos?5— Yours always truly T. Carlyle