Early Letters of Thomas Carlyle

By Charles Eliot Norton; Thomas Carlyle | Go to book overview
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LETTERS OF THOMAS CARLYLE

I.--To Mr. THOMAS CARLYLE, Edinburgh.
From his Father.1

ECCLEFECHAN, 27th April 1814.

DEAR SIR--I received yours yesterday, and was very glad to hear that you were well and was teaching, for we did not know what to do, whether you were coming home or going to stop at Edinburgh; the reason of me not writing last time the Carrier came out--Sandy2 was summoned about Dr. Thom's Mob; he was libelled with thirteen pages of paper written about the business. Dr. Henderson and Tom Minto were likewise summoned, and Peggy Kerr; there being no proof against Sandy he of course was discharged from the Bar. Dr. Henderson was fined £20 and one month's imprisonment; Minto, £10 and two weeks' imprisonment; Peggy Kerr, £5. We were all in confusion on Saturday getting witnesses to prove Sandy not guilty, and after all our labour the witnesses would not do without your Mother was there also; then she had to get ready for setting off on Monday, which she did with great difficulty, having to take Jenny and Peggy with her. You may think whether that would put us past writing or not. The Carrier is for coming off on Monday; but I thought that would not do for you [which] caused me to write this in the meantime and enclose this, and I

____________________
1
This letter is apparently the earliest that has been preserved of the long correspondence between Carlyle and his family. [My Father] "wrote to me duly and affectionately while I was at college. Nothing that was good for me did he fail with his best ability to provide."-- Reminiscences, i. 58.
2
Carlyle's next younger brother. What "Dr. Thom's Mob" was, and what share, if any, the boy Sandy had in it, there is now no telling.

-1-

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