'the man who has most essentially modified the mind of his time...Whether we call him philosopher, poet, or moralist, he is the first teacher of our generation.' Harriet Martineau Thomas Carlyle was one of the most influential commentators of the nineteenth century: writer, critic, historian, biographer and brilliant correspondent, he dominated his age. Described as 'the greatest writer of his time' his Reminiscences lovingly trace three triumphs, sorrows, and achievements of his often turbulent marriage with Jane Welsh. Devastated by his wife's death, Carlyle set down his recollections of their life together with moving directness, in an account that reveals much about his own character. The Reminiscences also recall Thomas's father, James Carlyle, and his strong sense of identity growing up in Scotland. Jane Carlyle's early loves, Francis Jeffrey (editor of the Edinburgh Review) and the minister Edward Irving who was destroyed by the mockery of 'speaking with tongues', are also remembered, alongside the poets Southey and Wordsworth. Hurriedly published in 1881, the year of Carlyle's death, the Reminiscences provoked outrage for their outspokenness.
This edition for the first time restores the cuts of its first editor and offers a complete and authoritative text. Written in compelling and vivid prose, it is a unique introduction to some extraordinary mid-century Victorians.show more