The Collected Letters, Volume 4


TC TO JANE BAILLIE WELSH; 4 September 1826; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18260904-TC-JBW-01; CL 4:131-132.


Scotsbrig, Monday Evening [4 September 1826].

My Love,

I had sent daily to the Post-office for news of you, during the last fortnight; and on Saturday, as usual, I was answered with a negative[.] The blind Postmaster's boy had failed to decipher your address; and so kept me another eight and forty hours in suspense. I did not get your letter till this morning.

Would to Heaven, as you say, the whole matter were over, and no more letters in this world to pass to and fro between us! Well, over it will be ere long one way or another, and so let us be patient and content. My good little girl has suffered much for me already; but I trust in God it shall all be made good to her in future.

I might set out immediately, but I am rather sicker than usual for the last three or four days; and besides I do not wish to take you by surprise. Till Wednesday evening you cannot get this letter; so I must be content to announce myself for Thursday first; about evening I suppose, for the way is long, and Larry cannot gallop it all. On Thursday evening then will you—give me a kiss, a Brautkuss [nuptial kiss]? I should not say; but I know in heart you will.

I may stay with you all Friday, and take counsel about everything, and return on Saturday, to expedite what has been consulted.

I could wish considerably that one journey to Edinr might do for all; yet I fear it; for money is an indispensible, and without my presence I doubt it will be unattainable. This also we shall talk of.

Quid multa? [Why so many words?] I will see you in twelve hours after you read this, and tell you a thousand things, and hear as many, and discuss the whole mystery of our Fortune, now one and indivisible, and steal many a kind look, and some hundreds of kisses from you, and hopes that might make a less steadfast philosophy waver on its basis. Good night Darling! And may the Giver of all good be with you!

Forget not my kindest regards to your Mother, to your Aunt and your Grandfather whom I hope soon to greet in person. All here from the oldest to the youngest wish you heartily well.

I am ever your own, /

Thomas Carlyle—

James Johnstone I shall see this night; being invited to drink tea along with Jack at his—wedding! By Heaven, the man is to be wedded! Tomorrow morning about four of the clock he is joined in the indissoluble tie with Miss Janet Carlyle of Grahamshall,1 and rolls off to Haddington that same night. There is for you. And to crown the whole he celebrates his nuptial feast the night before the nuptials! If the Bride should rue in the interim! But I swear she will not.— Good night! I am far too late for the marriage tea.