Our website is made possible by displaying online advertisements to our visitors.
Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker.

Download links will be available after you disable the ad blocker and reload the page.

The Correspondence of Thomas Carlyle and Ralph Waldo Emerson, 1834-1872, Vol II.

Download options:

  • 376.37 KB
  • 953.68 KB
  • 495.03 KB




LXXVI. Emerson to Carlyle

Concord, 1 July, 1842

My Dear Carlyle,—I have lately received from our slow friends, James Munroe & Co., $246 on account of their sales of the Miscellanies,—and I enclose a bill of Exchange for L51, which cost $246.50. It is a long time since I sent you any sketch of the account itself, and indeed a long time since it was posted, as the booksellers say; but I will find a time and a clerk also for this.

I have had no word from you for a long space. You wrote me a letter from Scotland after the death of your wife's mother, and full of pity for me also; and since, I have heard nothing. I confide that all has gone well and prosperously with you; that the iron Puritan is emerging from the Past, in shape and stature as he lived; and you are recruited by sympathy and content with your picture; and that the sure repairs of time and love and active duty have brought peace to the orphan daughter's heart. My friend Alcott must also have visited you before this, and you have seen whether any relation could subsist betwixt men so differently excellent. His wife here has heard of his arrival on your coast,—no more.

I submitted to what seemed a necessity of petty literary patriotism,—I know not what else to call it,—and took charge of our thankless little Dial, here, without subscribers enough to pay even a publisher, much less any laborer; it has no penny for editor or contributor, nothing but abuse in the newspapers, or, at best, silence; but it serves as a sort of portfolio, to carry about a few poems or sentences which would otherwise be transcribed and circulated; and always we are waiting when somebody shall come and make it good. But I took it, as I said, and it took me, and a great deal of good time, to a small purpose. I am ashamed to compute how many hours and days these chores consume for me. I had it fully in my heart to write at large leisure in noble mornings opened by prayer or by readings of Plato or whomsoever else is dearest to the Morning Muse, a chapter on Poetry, for which all readings, all studies, are but preparation; but now it is July, and my chapter is rudest beginnings. Yet when I go out of doors in the summer night, and see how high the stars are, I am persuaded that there is time enough, here or somewhere, for all that I must do; and the good world manifests very little impatience.

Stearns Wheeler, the Cambridge tutor, a good Grecian, and the editor, you will remember, of your American Editions, is going to London in August probably, and on to Heidelberg, &c. He means, I believe, to spend two years in Germany, and will come to see you on his way; a man whose too facile and good-natured manners do some injustice to his virtues, to his great industry and real knowledge. He has been corresponding with your Tennyson, and editing his Poems here. My mother, my wife, my two little girls, are well; the youngest, Edith, is the comfort of my days. Peace and love be with you, with you both, and all that is yours....