Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Carlyle’s clothespins

leave a comment »

Portrait of Thomas Carlyle by James MacNeill Whistler

Speaking of his method of work, [Carlyle] said he had found the little wooden pegs, which washerwomen employ to fasten their clothes to a line, highly convenient for keeping together bits of notes and agenda on the same special point. It was his habit to paste on a screen in his workroom engraved portraits, when no better could be had, of the people he was then writing about. It kept the image of the man steadily in view, and one must have a clear image of him in the mind before it was in the least possible to make him be seen by the reader.

—Sir Charles Grant Duffy, Conversations with Carlyle

Written by nevalalee

February 9, 2014 at 9:00 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: