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Thomas Carlyle | British essayist and historian.


In 1834 Thomas and Jane Carlyle left their remote moorland home in Scotland and came to London to seek their fortune. They rented this house in the then 'unfashionable' Chelsea for just £35 a year. Experience the intimate atmosphere of a Victorian home.

This is the decoupage screen which you will find in the drawing room, it was made by Jane Carlyle in 1849. Most of what you will see when you visit belonged to the Carlyles.

Carlyle's House doesn't have a cafe - there are many to choose from on the nearby Kings Road - or why not take a picnic to nearby Battersea Park and make an afternoon of it?

In 2011, we were very pleased to be featured on BBC Radio 4's Women's Hour. Reporter Louise Adamson visited to find more about Thomas Carlyle and his wife Jane, and their lives here. We're featured from 9 min 50 secs onwards.

N Quentin Woolf, followed in the footsteps of Dickens, Ruskin and Tennyson on a visit to Carlyle's House. He met our custodian who lives in the home of the 19th-century social commentators. She showed him around the building, noting quite how much has changed in the area since the couple lived there.

Join us for a chance to visit Carlyle's House in the evening and listen to one of a series of talks on all things Victorian. We're delighted to be hosting a series of events with A Curious Invitation for a third year.

In 1834 Thomas and Jane Carlyle left their remote moorland home in Scotland and came to London to seek their fortune. They rented this house in the then 'unfashionable' Chelsea for just £35 a year. Experience the intimate atmosphere of a Victorian home.

This is the decoupage screen which you will find in the drawing room, it was made by Jane Carlyle in 1849. Most of what you will see when you visit belonged to the Carlyles.

Carlyle's House doesn't have a cafe - there are many to choose from on the nearby Kings Road - or why not take a picnic to nearby Battersea Park and make an afternoon of it?

In 2011, we were very pleased to be featured on BBC Radio 4's Women's Hour. Reporter Louise Adamson visited to find more about Thomas Carlyle and his wife Jane, and their lives here. We're featured from 9 min 50 secs onwards.

N Quentin Woolf, followed in the footsteps of Dickens, Ruskin and Tennyson on a visit to Carlyle's House. He met our custodian who lives in the home of the 19th-century social commentators. She showed him around the building, noting quite how much has changed in the area since the couple lived there.

Join us for a chance to visit Carlyle's House in the evening and listen to one of a series of talks on all things Victorian. We're delighted to be hosting a series of events with A Curious Invitation for a third year.

Little did anyone know that the boy born here in 1795 would go on to become one of the most prolific writers and social commentators of the 19th century.

The unassuming exterior of this wee house in Ecclefechan, near Lockerbie, belies its significance in Scottish history. The house was constructed by Carlyle’s father and uncle, both local stonemasons, and is a fine example of Scottish 18th-century vernacular architecture.

What the Arched House lacks in size, it makes up for in cultural significance. It’s fascinating to see where this hugely influential man grew up.

Many of Carlyle’s belongings are still in situ, along with domestic items of the time, providing an authentic glimpse into Victorian life and a fascinating insight into Thomas Carlyle’s early years. There are also many photos and reproductions of paintings of Carlyle and his wife Jane, a famous 19th-century literary couple.

After your visit, enjoy a wander round the pretty village of Ecclefechan and absorb the atmosphere that nurtured the ‘Sage of Ecclefechan’. There is a great view from the top of the village, where there is a replica of Boehm’s statue of Carlyle on the Embankment in London.

There is one step into the main room on the ground floor, and a steep flight of stairs up to two rooms on the second floor.

His debut was incredible. The French Revolution and Sartor Resartus depicted vigorously the new Europe trading free, thinking free but lost in the whirlwind. His ideas were wake-up calls, the prose irascible, original, prophetic. From 1835 to 1845, Carlyle changed Britain’s mental climate by consolidating anti-establishment forces, and the effect was comparable to Picasso’s in France or the Beats in America. Under his influence, the struggle for right ideas became so intense among intellectuals that we must wonder if it was a mistake when John Stuart Mill brought home a draft of Carlyle’s French Revolution and his maid “accidentally” burned it up.

Bayne says thinkers have two choices: “If honour ought to be rendered to those high minded iconoclasts who find their whole duty summed up in destruction, honour may be claimed for those who also attempt the still more difficult task of transforming the old into the new, and separating the imperishable truth from the perishable form in which men have previously apprehended it” (125).

Embedding stirring images in his message helps Carlyle shock, convince and correct. He derived another strong one, the Irish widow , from a sociological report on poverty and health in Scotland. When the widow asks for help from Scottish charities, she and her three children are turned away. But the higher tie that binds her to her fellow-citizens is proved when she dies on the streets of typhus having infected 17 others of her Lane with fever. The image is perfect but what follows reads as less so. It is Carlyle’s need to be didactic:

Hero-worship exists forever, and everywhere: not Loyalty alone; it extends from divine adoration down to the lowest practical regions of life. "Bending before men," if it is not to be a mere empty grimace, better dispensed with than practiced, is Hero-worship,--a recognition that there does dwell in that presence of our brother something divine; that every created man, as Novalis said, is a "revelation in the Flesh." They were Poets too, that devised all those graceful courtesies which make life noble! Courtesy is not a falsehood or grimace; it need not be such. And Loyalty, religious Worship itself, are still possible; nay still inevitable.

In 1834 Thomas and Jane Carlyle left their remote moorland home in Scotland and came to London to seek their fortune. They rented this house in the then 'unfashionable' Chelsea for just £35 a year. Experience the intimate atmosphere of a Victorian home.

This is the decoupage screen which you will find in the drawing room, it was made by Jane Carlyle in 1849. Most of what you will see when you visit belonged to the Carlyles.

Carlyle's House doesn't have a cafe - there are many to choose from on the nearby Kings Road - or why not take a picnic to nearby Battersea Park and make an afternoon of it?

In 2011, we were very pleased to be featured on BBC Radio 4's Women's Hour. Reporter Louise Adamson visited to find more about Thomas Carlyle and his wife Jane, and their lives here. We're featured from 9 min 50 secs onwards.

N Quentin Woolf, followed in the footsteps of Dickens, Ruskin and Tennyson on a visit to Carlyle's House. He met our custodian who lives in the home of the 19th-century social commentators. She showed him around the building, noting quite how much has changed in the area since the couple lived there.

Join us for a chance to visit Carlyle's House in the evening and listen to one of a series of talks on all things Victorian. We're delighted to be hosting a series of events with A Curious Invitation for a third year.

Little did anyone know that the boy born here in 1795 would go on to become one of the most prolific writers and social commentators of the 19th century.

The unassuming exterior of this wee house in Ecclefechan, near Lockerbie, belies its significance in Scottish history. The house was constructed by Carlyle’s father and uncle, both local stonemasons, and is a fine example of Scottish 18th-century vernacular architecture.

What the Arched House lacks in size, it makes up for in cultural significance. It’s fascinating to see where this hugely influential man grew up.

Many of Carlyle’s belongings are still in situ, along with domestic items of the time, providing an authentic glimpse into Victorian life and a fascinating insight into Thomas Carlyle’s early years. There are also many photos and reproductions of paintings of Carlyle and his wife Jane, a famous 19th-century literary couple.

After your visit, enjoy a wander round the pretty village of Ecclefechan and absorb the atmosphere that nurtured the ‘Sage of Ecclefechan’. There is a great view from the top of the village, where there is a replica of Boehm’s statue of Carlyle on the Embankment in London.

There is one step into the main room on the ground floor, and a steep flight of stairs up to two rooms on the second floor.

His debut was incredible. The French Revolution and Sartor Resartus depicted vigorously the new Europe trading free, thinking free but lost in the whirlwind. His ideas were wake-up calls, the prose irascible, original, prophetic. From 1835 to 1845, Carlyle changed Britain’s mental climate by consolidating anti-establishment forces, and the effect was comparable to Picasso’s in France or the Beats in America. Under his influence, the struggle for right ideas became so intense among intellectuals that we must wonder if it was a mistake when John Stuart Mill brought home a draft of Carlyle’s French Revolution and his maid “accidentally” burned it up.

Bayne says thinkers have two choices: “If honour ought to be rendered to those high minded iconoclasts who find their whole duty summed up in destruction, honour may be claimed for those who also attempt the still more difficult task of transforming the old into the new, and separating the imperishable truth from the perishable form in which men have previously apprehended it” (125).

Embedding stirring images in his message helps Carlyle shock, convince and correct. He derived another strong one, the Irish widow , from a sociological report on poverty and health in Scotland. When the widow asks for help from Scottish charities, she and her three children are turned away. But the higher tie that binds her to her fellow-citizens is proved when she dies on the streets of typhus having infected 17 others of her Lane with fever. The image is perfect but what follows reads as less so. It is Carlyle’s need to be didactic:

In 1834 Thomas and Jane Carlyle left their remote moorland home in Scotland and came to London to seek their fortune. They rented this house in the then 'unfashionable' Chelsea for just £35 a year. Experience the intimate atmosphere of a Victorian home.

This is the decoupage screen which you will find in the drawing room, it was made by Jane Carlyle in 1849. Most of what you will see when you visit belonged to the Carlyles.

Carlyle's House doesn't have a cafe - there are many to choose from on the nearby Kings Road - or why not take a picnic to nearby Battersea Park and make an afternoon of it?

In 2011, we were very pleased to be featured on BBC Radio 4's Women's Hour. Reporter Louise Adamson visited to find more about Thomas Carlyle and his wife Jane, and their lives here. We're featured from 9 min 50 secs onwards.

N Quentin Woolf, followed in the footsteps of Dickens, Ruskin and Tennyson on a visit to Carlyle's House. He met our custodian who lives in the home of the 19th-century social commentators. She showed him around the building, noting quite how much has changed in the area since the couple lived there.

Join us for a chance to visit Carlyle's House in the evening and listen to one of a series of talks on all things Victorian. We're delighted to be hosting a series of events with A Curious Invitation for a third year.

Little did anyone know that the boy born here in 1795 would go on to become one of the most prolific writers and social commentators of the 19th century.

The unassuming exterior of this wee house in Ecclefechan, near Lockerbie, belies its significance in Scottish history. The house was constructed by Carlyle’s father and uncle, both local stonemasons, and is a fine example of Scottish 18th-century vernacular architecture.

What the Arched House lacks in size, it makes up for in cultural significance. It’s fascinating to see where this hugely influential man grew up.

Many of Carlyle’s belongings are still in situ, along with domestic items of the time, providing an authentic glimpse into Victorian life and a fascinating insight into Thomas Carlyle’s early years. There are also many photos and reproductions of paintings of Carlyle and his wife Jane, a famous 19th-century literary couple.

After your visit, enjoy a wander round the pretty village of Ecclefechan and absorb the atmosphere that nurtured the ‘Sage of Ecclefechan’. There is a great view from the top of the village, where there is a replica of Boehm’s statue of Carlyle on the Embankment in London.

There is one step into the main room on the ground floor, and a steep flight of stairs up to two rooms on the second floor.


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