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    The Carlyle Letters Online: A Victorian Cultural Reference

    Key Facts About This Resource

    Fields Class, Economics, Gender and Sexuality, Legal, Political, Religion, Slavery
    Geographic Focus Great Britain and Ireland
    Chronology 1800s
    • Price

    • Access

      Online Only
    • Jonathan

      Contributed By



    Thomas and Jane Carlyle were extraordinarily important members of the British literary elite. Their contemporaries were figures such as Charles Dickens, and Alfred Lord Tennyson. Both individuals were born in Scotland, though to very different families. They married in 1826, and then moved to London in 1834 where they became famous. This project argues that this couple is representative of everything that we conceive of as "Victorian." 

    The project contains thousands of pages of correspondence between the Carlyle's and their many correspondents. It is possible to browse letters by recipient, subject, or by date/volume. This is an extraordinarily useful resource for anyone interested in social/cultural history of the early to mid-nineteenth century. 

    What to Know:

    • You cannot view the original letters through this database, so you do have to rely on others transcriptions. 
    • The search function is quite good. You can search by keyword and limit by date. There is also a "fuzzy search" option. 

    About Jonathan

    I am currently an Adjunct Professor of History at Lynchburg College in Virginia. I received my PhD in Modern British History from Florida State University in 2016. My research explores the way in which competing definitions of masculinity influenced army reform in the mid-nineteenth century. Civilians called for moral reforms; however, they were constantly hampered by politician and military officials' financial concerns. This work offers a number of interventions in the current historiography by exploring issues of corporal punishment, soldiers' sexuality, military suicide, and soldiers' families. 

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