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plainly, you must part. We sauntered slowly into the Glasgow Muirkirk highway. Masons were building at a wayside cottage near by, or were packing up on ceasing for the day. We leant our backs to a dry stone fence, and looking into the western radiance continued in talk yet a while, loth both of us to go. It was just here as the sun was sinking, Irving actually drew from me by degrees, in the softest manner, the confession that I did not think as he of the Christian religion, and that it was vain for me to expect I ever could or should. This, if this was so, he had pre-engaged to take well from me like an elder brother, if I would be frank with him, and right loyally he did so, and to the end of his life we needed no concealments on that head, which was really a step gained.

The sun was about setting when we turned away each on his own path. Irving would have had a good space further to go than I, perhaps fifteen or seventeen miles, and would not be in Kent Street till towards midnight. But he feared no amount of walking, enjoyed it rather, as did I in those young years. I felt sad, but affectionate and good in my clean, utterly quiet little inn at Muirkirk, which and my feelings in it I still well remember. An innocent little Glasgow youth (young bagman on his first journey, I supposed) had talked awhile with me in the otherwise solitary little sitting room. At parting he shook hands, and with something of sorrow in his tone said, 'Good night. I shall not see you again. I was off next morning at four o'clock.

Nothing further has to be recorded of Carlyle's history for some months. He remained quietly through the spring and summer at Mainhill, occupied chiefly in reading. He was beginning his acquaintance with German literature, his friend Mr. Swan, of Kirkcaldy, who had correspondents at Hamburg, providing him with books. He was still writing small articles, too, for Brewster's Encyclopædia, unsatisfactory work, though better than none.

I was timorously aiming towards literature (he says--perhaps in consequence of Irying's urgency). I thought in audacious moments I might perhaps earn some wages that way by honest labour, somehow to help my finances; but in that too I was painfully sceptical (talent and opportunity alike doubtful, alike incredible to me, poor downtrodden soul), and in fact there came little enough of produce and finance to me from that source, and for the first years absolutely none, in spite of my diligent and desperate efforts, which are sad to me to think of even now. Acti labores. Yes, but of such a futile, dismal, lonely, dim, and chaotic kind, in a scene all ghastly chaos to me. Sad, dim, and ugly as the shore of Styx and Phlegethon, as a nightmare dream become real. No more of that; it did not conquer me, or quite kill me, thank God.

August brought Irving to Annan for his summer holidays, which opened possibilities of renewed companionship. Mainhill was but seven miles off, and the friends met and wandered together in the Mount Annan woods, Irving steadily cheering Carlyle with confident promises of ultimate success. In September came an offer of a tutorship in a “statesman's's family, which Irving urged him to accept.

You live too much in an ideal world (Irving said), and you are likely to be punished for it by an unfitness for practical life. It is not your fault but the mis

''Statesman,' or small freeholder farming his own land, common still in Cumberland, then spread over the northern counties.

fortune of your circumstances, as it has been in a less degree of my own. This situation will be more a remely for that than if you were to go back to Edinburgh. Try your hand with the respectable illiterate men of middle life, as I am doing at present, and perhaps in their honesty and hearty kindness you may be taught to forget, and perhaps to undervalue the splendours, and envies, and competitions of men of literature. I think you have within you the ability to rear the pillars of your own immortality, and, what is more, of your own happiness, from the basis of any level in life, and I would always have any man destined to infuence the interests of men, to have read these interests as they are disclosed in the mass of men, and not in the few who are listed upon the eminence of life, and when there too often forget the man to ape the ruler or the monarch. All that is valuable of the literary caste you hare in their writings. Their conversations, I am told, are full of jealousy and reserve, or perhaps, to cover that reserve, of trifling.

Irving's judgment was perhaps at fault in this advice. Carlyle, proud, irritable, and impatient as he was, could not have remained a week in such a household. His ambition (downtrodden as he might call himself) was greater than he knew. He may have felt like Halbert Glendinning when the hope was held out to him of becoming the Abbot's head keeper-'a body servant, and to a lazy priest!' At any rate the proposal came to nothing, and with the winter he was back once more at his lodgings in Edinburgh, determined to fight his way somehow, though in what direction he could not yet decide

or see.

T. Carlyle to Alexander Carlyle.

Edinburgh, December 5, 1820. I sit down with the greatest pleasure to answer your most acceptable letter. The warm affection, the generous sympathy displayed in it go near the heart, and shed over me a meek and kindly dew of brotherly love more refreshing than any but a wandering forlorn mortal can well imagine. Some of your expressions affect me almost to weakness, I might say with pain, if I did not hope the course of erents will change our feelings from anxiety to congratulation, from soothing adversity to adorning prosperity. I marked your disconsolate look. It has often since been painted in the mind's eye. But believe me, my boy, these days will pass over. We shall all get to rights in good time, and long after, cheer many a winter evening by recalling such pensive, but yet amiable and manly thoughts to our minds. And in the meanwhile let me utterly sweep away the vain fear of our forgetting one another. There is less danger of this than of anything. We Carlyles are a clannish people because we have all something original in our formation, and find therefore less than common sympathy with others; so that we are constrained, as it were, to draw to one another, and to seek that friendship in our own blood which we do not find so readily elsewhere. Jack and I and you will respect one another to the end of our lives, because I predict that our conduct will be worthy of respect, and we will love one another, because the feelings of our young days ---feelings impressed most deeply on the young heart--are all intertwined and united by the tenderest yet strongest ties of our nature. But independently of this your sear is vain. Continue to cultivate your abilities, and to bebave steadily and quietly as you have done, and neither of the two literatio are likely to find many persons more qualified to appreciate their feelings than the fariner their brother. Greek words and Latin are fine things, but they cannot hide the emptiness and lowness of many who employ them.

• His brother Jolin and bimself.

Brewster has printed my article. He is a pushing man and speaks encora gingly to me. Tait, the bookseller, is loud in his kind anticipations of the grand things that are in store for me. But in fact I do not lend much ear to those gentlemen. I feel quite sick of this drivelling state of painful idleness. I am going to be patient no longer, but quitting study or leaving it in a secondary place I feel determined, as it were, to find something stationary, some local habitation and some name for myself, ere it be long. I shall turn and try all things, be diligent, be assiduous in season and out of season to effect this prudent purpose; and if health stay with me I still trust I shall succeed. At worst it is but narrowing my views to suit my means. I shall enter the writing life, the merc

ercantile, the lecturing, any life in short but that of country schoolmaster, and even that sad refuge from the storms of fate, rather than stand here in frigid impotence, the powers of my mind all festering and corroding each other in the miserable strise of inward will against outward necessity.

I lay out my heart before you, my boy, because it is solacing for me to do so ; but I would not have you think me depressed. Bad health does indeed depress and undermine one more than all other calamities put together, but with care, which I have the best of all reasons for taking, I know this will in time get out of danger. Steady then, steady! as the drill-sergeants say. Let us be steady unto the end. In due time we shall reap if we faint not. Long may you continue to cherish the manly feelings which you express in conclusion. They lead to respectability at least from the world, and, what is far better, to sunshine within which nothing can destroy or eclipse.

In the same packet Carlyle enclosed a letter to his mother.

I know well and feel deeply that you entertain the most solicitous anxiety about my temporal, and still more about my eternal welfare ; as to the former of which I have still hopes that all your tenderness will yet be repaid ; and as to the ?atter, though it becomes not the human worm to boast, I would fain persuade you not to entertain so many doubts. Your character and mine are far more similar than you imagine; and our opinions too, though clothed in different garbs, are, I well know, still analogous at bottom. I respect your religious sentiments and honour you for feeling them more than if you were the highest woman in the world without them. Be easy, I entreat you, on my account; the world will use me better than before ; and if it should not, let us hope to meet in that upper country, when the vain fever of life is gone by, in the country where all darkness shall be light, and where the exercise of our atlections will not be thwarted by the infirmities of human nature any more. Brewster will give me articles enough. Meanwhile my living here is not to cost me anything, at least for a season more or less. I have two hours of teaching, which both gires me a call to walk and brings in four guineas a month.

Again, a few weeks later :

T Carlyle to Mrs. Carlyle.

Jan, 30, 1821. My employment, you are aware, is still very fluctuating, but this I trust will improve. I am advancing, I think, though leisurely, and at last I feel no insuperable doubts of getting honest bread, which is all I want. For as to fame and all that, I see it already to be nothing better than a meteor, a will-o'-the-wisp which leads one on through quagmires and pitfalls to catch an object which, when we have caught it, turns out to be nothing. I am happy to think in the meantime that you do not feel uneasy about my future destiny. Providence, as you observe, will order it better or worse, and with His award, so nothing mean or wicked lie before me, I shall study to rest satisfied.

It is a striking thing, and an alarming to those who are at ease in the world, to think how many living beings that had breath and hope within them when I left Ecclefechan are now numbered with the clods of the valley! Surely there is something obstinately stupid in the heart of man, or the flight of threescore years, and the poor joys or poorer cares of this our pilgrimage would never move us as they do. Why do we fret and murmur, and toil, and consume ourselves for objects so transient and frail ? Is it that the soul living here as in her prison-house strives after something boundless like herself, and finding it nowhere still renews the search? Surely we are fearfully and wonderfully made. But I must not pursue these speculations, though they force themselves upon us sometimes even without our asking.

To his family Carlyle made the best of his situation; and indeed, so far as outward circumstances were concerned, there was no special cause for anxiety. His farmhouse training had made him indifferent to luxuries, and he was earning as much money as he required. It was not here that the pinch lay; it was in the still uncompleted 'temptations in the wilderness,' in the mental uncertainties which gave him neither peace nor respite. He had no friend in Edinburgh with whom he could exchange thoughts, and no society to amuse or distract him. And those who knew his condition best, the faithful Irving especially, became seriously alarmed for him. So keenly Irving felt the danger that in December he even invited Carlyle to abandon Edinburgh altogether and be his own guest for an indefinite time at Glasgow.

You make me too proud of myself (he wrote) when you connect me so much with your happiness. Would that I could contribute to it as I most fondly wish, and one of the richest and most powerful minds I know should not now be struggling with obscurity and a thousand obstacles. And yet, if I had the power, I do not see by what means I should cause it to be known; your mind, unfortunately for its present peace, has taken in so wide a range of study as to be almost incapable of professional trammels; and it has nourished so uncommon and so unyielding a character, as first unfits you for, and then disgusts you with, any accommodations which would procure favour and patronage. The race which you have run these last years pains me even to think upon it, and if it should be continued a little longer, I pray God to give you strength to endure it. We calculate upon seeing you at Christmas, and till then you can think of what I now propose—that instead of wearying yourself with endless vexations which are more than you can bear, you will consent to spend not a few weeks, but a few months, here under my roof, where enjoying at least wholesome conversation and the sight of real friends, you may undertake some literary employment which may present you in a fairer aspect to the public than any you have hitherto taken before them. Now I know it is quite Scottish for you to refuse this upon the score of troubling me: but trouble to me it is none; and if it were a thousand times more, would I not esteem it well bestowed upon you and most highly rewarded by your company and conversation ? I should esteem it an honour that your first sally in arms went forth from my habitation.

Well might Carlyle cherish Irving's memory. Never bad he or any man a truer-hearted, more generous friend. The offer could not be accepted. Carlyle was determined before all things to earn his own bread, and he would not abandon his pupil work. Christmas he did spend at Glasgow, but he was soon back again. He was corresponding now with London booksellers, offering a complete translation of Schiller for one thing, to which the answer had been an abrupt No. Captain Basil Hall, on the other hand, having heard of Carlyle, tried to attach him to himself, a sort of scientific companion on easy terms -Carlyle to do observations which Captain Hall was to send to the Admiralty as his own, and to have in return the advantage of philosophical society, &c., to which his answer had in like manner been negative. His letters show him still suffering from mental fever, though with glimpses of purer light.

Thomas Carlyle to John Carlyle.

Edinburgh, March 9, 1821. It is a shame and misery to me at this age to be gliding about in strenuous idleness, with no hand in the game of life where I have yet so much to win, no outlet for the restless faculties which are up in mutiny and slaying one another for lack of fair enemies. I must do or die then, as the song goes. Edinburgh, with all its drawbacks, is the only scene for me. In the country I am like an alien, a stranger and pilgrim from a far-distant land. I must endeavour most sternly, for this state of things cannot last, and if health do but revisit me as I know she will, it shall ere long give place to a better. If I grow seriously ill, indeed, it will be different, but when once the weather is settled and dry, exercise and care will restore me completely. I am considerably clearer than I was, and I should have been still more so had not this afternoon been wet, and so prevented me from breathing the air of Arthur's seat, a mountain close beside us, where the atmosphere is pure as a diamond, and the prospect grander than any you ever saw. The blue majestic everlasting ocean, with the Fife hills swelling gradually into the Grampians behind; rough crags and rude precipices at our feet (where not a hillock rears its head unsung), with Edinburgh at their base clustering proudly over her rugged foundations, and covering with a vapoury mantle the jagged black venerable masses of stonework that stretch far and wide and show like a city of Fairyland. I saw it all last evening when the sun was going down, and the moon's fine crescent, like a pretty silver creature as it is, was riding quietly above me. Such a sight does one good. But I am leading you astray after my fantasies when I should be inditing plain prose.

The gloomy period of Carlyle's life, a period on which he said that he ever looked back with a kind of horror-was drawing to its close, this letter, among other symptoms, showing that the natural strength of his intellect was asserting itself. Better prospects were opening ; more regular literary employment; an offer, if he chose to accept it, from his friend Mr. Swan, of a tutorship at least more satisfactory than the Yorkshire one. His mother's affection was more precious to him, however simply expressed, than any other form of earthly consolation, Mrs. Carlyle to Thomas Carlyle.

Mainhill, March 21, 1821. Son Tom, I received your kind and pleasant letter. Nothing is more satisfying to me than to hear of your welfare. Keep up your heart, my brave boy. You ask kindly after my health. I complain as little as possible. When the day is cheerier,

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