The Rubenstein Carlyle Collection
The Thomas and Jane Welsh Carlyle Papers is a digital archive of “Correspondence, fragments, and notes” created from manuscript materials now held at the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University. Although some of the these documents have been published in both the Collected Letters and the Carlyle Letters Online, many of them have not. Users of the CLO are able for the first time to interact with both the holograph images and the edited transcriptions of this remarkable archive.
1812 – 1840
1841 – 1850
1851 – 1862
1862 – 1881
These three details from Robert Scott Tait’s painting A Chelsea Interior (1857). Tait’s method, which included preliminary photographs of the scene taken with his “malodourous Photographing Apparatus,” and his constant “fluffing about” (TC to JWC, 26 July 1857) was an unsurprising source of irritation for the Carlyles. In the details, Thomas is depicted standing in front of his drawing-room fireplace loading his pipe. He was an inveterate smoker, and Jane sometimes made him lie on his back in order to blow his smoke up the flue in an attempt to save the house from being enveloped in a tobacco haze. Jane sits pensively at her table looking upon her devoted and beloved Nero, who sits on the couch watching his master. The table and the couch are now joined by the painting, which hangs above their piano, in the drawing room of their home at Cheyne Row, London.