Letter icon
Letter 13060

Darwin, C. R. to Kovalevsky, V. O.

22 Feb [1870]

Summary

“I have received a very large box full of beautiful tea from Russia yesterday … my life is as regular & monotonous as a clock.

I make sure, but wofully slow progress, with my new book.”

Transcription

Down. | Beckenham. | Kent. S.E.

Feb. 22d

My dear Sir

I received a very large box full of beautiful tea from Russiayesterday, & no doubt from you.— It is very kind of you, but youare really too magnificent. I suppose you are at Heidelberg, but Ihave always regretted, since your visit here,f2 that I forgot to ask youto […]

[…] As for myself—my life is as regular & monotonous as aclock. I make sure, but wofully slow progress, with my new book, & donot yet in the least know when I shall go to press.f3 I doubt whether Ishall be ready before the end of the year […]

[…] I saw lately an allusion to some paper confirming hisremarkable discovery about the chordadorsalis in the lance of Ascidia [… ]f4

Swann (dealer) (1 October 1953); J. A. Stargardt (17 March 1995)

true

Footnotes

f1
The year is established by the reference to Heidelberg; see letterfrom V. O. Kovalevsky, 20 February [1870] and n. 1.
f2
Kovalevsky visited Down from 30 September to 1 October 1869 (EmmaDarwin’s diary (DAR 242)).
f3
Descent was published at the beginning of 1871.
f4
CD refers to Kovalevsky’s brother, Alexander Onufrievich Kovalevsky, and toA. Kovalevsky 1866. There is a heavily annotated copy ofA. O. Kovalevsky’s article in the Darwin Pamphlet Collection–CUL. Thepaper confirming Kovalevsky’s discovery was Kupffer 1870. CD discussedthe findings in Descent 1: 205. Chorda dorsalis: the notochord, acartilaginous rod forming the primitive basis of the spinal column(OED).
f5
The first page of the letter, down to ‘ask you to’, is transcribedfrom a facsimile; the rest is from the dealers’ transcriptions. Theoriginal letter is complete and is described in the sale catalogue asbeing four pages long.
Maximized viewPrint letter