Darwin Correspondence Project

On this site you can read and search the full texts of more than 7,500 of Charles Darwin’s letters, and find information on 7,500 more. Available here are complete transcripts of all known letters Darwin wrote and received up to the year 1869.
More are being added all the time.


  • Joseph Simms, Nature’s revelations of character, 1873, CUL 8300.c.57, © Cambridge University Library

    Correspondent of the Month: Joseph Simms (1833–1920)

    Posted on March 25th, 2014 in Natural Selections

    The American doctor and author of works on physiognomy Joseph Simms wrote to Darwin on 14 September 1874, while he was staying in London. He enclosed a copy of his book Nature’s revelations of character (Simms 1873). He hoped ‘it may prove sufficiently interesting’ that Darwin could ‘say a word in its favour for print’. [...]

  • valentine_image

    Even boils can be romantic

    Posted on February 14th, 2014 in Natural Selections

    To celebrate Valentine’s Day we were very pleased to be asked to join in BBC Radio 3′s The Verb, to talk about how Darwin signed off his letters (no kisses).  You can hear two of Darwin’s letters to his wife, Emma, on the programme.   After giving her an update on his health, he ends the [...]

  • v21_Jacket_thumbnail

    We’ll need a considerably bigger bookshelf

    Posted on February 7th, 2014 in Natural Selections

    The letters Darwin wrote and received in 1873 – all 558 of them – are now available in volume 21 of The Correspondence of Charles Darwin.   We are delighted to announce that our latest volume was published on 23 January 2014. So what was Darwin doing in 1873?   ‘I do not think any [...]

  • Royal Crescent, Bath

    Mystery solved!

    Posted on December 19th, 2013 in Natural Selections

    Thanks to everyone who offered ideas for our mystery correspondent, who sent a letter to Charles Darwin from 81 Upper Leeson Street, Dublin on 9 March 1875! We’re thrilled to say that we now have a definite result.   Glenn Branch suggested Isabella Harriet Wolfe (1813-95), who was living in at 19 Upper Leeson Street [...]

  • Which Wolfe?

    Can you help?

    Posted on October 30th, 2013 in Natural Selections

    We’re trying to find this correspondent – are you able to help?   The letter was written to Charles Darwin on 9 March 1875 from 81 Upper Leeson Street, Dublin. The correspondent says that they have just finished reading Descent. They write about their personal experience of pain, living in the country, collecting insects, a [...]