January 1829-September 1831

The Collected Letters, Volume 5


TC TO JAMES FRASER; 6 August 1830; DOI: 10.1215/lt-18300806-TC-JFR-01; CL 5:127-128.


Craigenputtoch, Dumfries, / 6th August, 1830—

Dear Sir,

Several months ago, I was honoured with a Letter from you, requesting Contributions for your Magazine; which request if I have delayed answering directly till now, the reason was simply that I had nothing in readiness to send, and thought it better to wait till I had some leisure and produce than trouble you with so barren a message. The first two Numbers of your Magazine, for which I have to thank you, satisfied me that it was a likely enough enterprize; containing, with several excrescences, a great deal of what was really good and worthy. Understanding you to be animated with the same spirit still, I rejoice to hear of your success; and shall be ready as occasion serves, to send you any litle thing I have got, if it can be of use to you.

The Packet of tonight contains

1°. A Tale entitled ‘Cruthers and Johnson,’ of rather old date;1 which you are at liberty to print, on condition that you MENTION TO NO ONE who the Author is. For the rest, if the thing do not suit you, be so good as return it without delay thro the hands of Dr Carlyle, my Brother.

2°. A short Paper entitled “Thoughts on History”;2 also to be printed, if at all, anonymously, tho' in private it is no matter who knows the name.

3°. Some Fables and Rhymes;3 which, had I time to make a general Jail-delivery, might be augmented in quantity: these also are subject to the same conditions.

Be so good as communicate to my Brother what your purpose is with respect to these things. Also I have to request that any Payment which that translation (of Critique on Madame de Stael [in] your First Number) seems to you to deserve, may be made to my Brother, who knows how to dispose of it.

He will revise the Proofsheets in case of any Printing.

May I ask farther that you would have the kindness to put this Letter for him into some Post-Office, or other conveyance, whereby he may have it, if possible, before Monday Night, when I expect him to write to me.

Perhaps, if matters go well, I may get you up something much more to my own mind and to yours, than these trifles.

With best wishes, in the meanwhile,

I remain, / Dear Sir, / Yours Truly, /

Thomas Carlyle