The Collected Letters, Volume 4


TC TO HUNT AND CLARKE; 16 March 1827; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18270316-TC-HACL-01; CL 4:193-194.


Edinr 21. Comley Bank [16 March 1827]


I cannot but thank you for your favourable estimation of my services;1 and express my satisfaction at the hope thus held out to me of contributing still farther to spread among my countrymen, the name and doctrines of a man to whom I myself am under so many and so kind obligations.

The projected Literary Engagement I referred to was not limited to time; being indeed the joint Editorship of a new Periodical; which enterprize, however, I am very willing to postpone in favour of the easier and more pleasant one of editing this Work of Goethe's. For myself the fittest of all times to commence the undertaking would be the present: in about three months I should propose that we began printing, and this with vigour and despatch; by which means we might have the whole work off our hands about this time twelvemonth. If such an arrangement could be made to suit you, I have on this head no father stipulation.

I know not whether it would be inconsistent with your arrangements to have the Book printed here beside me. I am sure it could be done as well and as cheaply here as any where else; and the advantages of such an arrangement both for correctness and expedition are obvious enough. Ballantyne, Balfour & Clerk, Stark, Oliver & Boyd &c &c are all unexceptionable trademen; more especially the first, whose name indeed needs not my recommendation, tho from experience I could recommend him as not only the most tasteful and accurate in regard to his art, but also the most punctual and faithful considered as merely a man of business of all printers known to me either in Edinr or London. In this matter I should be very happy to lend you my best assistance in forming an arrangement; a thing which might perhaps be advantageously done even now; for our printers, I hear, are still complaining of deficiency in their employment. This however is a matter in which (convenient as it would be for me) my convenience might bend to yours.

One other thing I have to mention: I could wish that with regard to the Introductory Essay and other original matter added to the translations I should have liberty to reprint any part of it for my own behoof at some future time in case I so saw good. Of this reprinting I have no purpose at present; but I should like to reserve such a right for myself; by which also I believe your Book would be no loser but a gainer.

I have a packet for Goethe waiting here till the Elbe is open: perhaps our bargain may be finally [concluded] before this goes away; and so I might mention the affair to the Author himself, and request his advice or at least good wishes. ho ho! ho2 I am be

Will you have the goodness to consider these matters, especially this of the time proposed; and let me know your determination with as little delay as possible.

Twiddle dum and twiddle [dee]
Thus for myself the fittest of all
Thus for myself that