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Letter 13632

Darwin, C. R. to Murray, John (b)

21 Jan 1882

Summary

Thanks JM for copy of Quarterly Review, with article on his worm book [Henry Wace, "Darwin on earthworms", Q. Rev. 153 (1882): 179–202].

Writer will change his mind on evolution. CD cannot think of any young worker in biology who is not convinced of the truth of evolution, though many believe that natural selection has not done much.

Transcription

Down, | Beckenham, Kent. | (Railway Station | Orpington. S.E.R.)

Jan 21. 1882—

My dear Mr Murray

I am much obliged for the Quarterly. I have read the few first pages of the article on my worm-book, which are highly complimentary, indeed more than complimentary. If the Reviewer is a young man & a worker in any branch of Biology, he will assuredly sooner or later write differently about evolution. Literally I cannot name a single youngish worker who is not as deeply convinced of the truth of Evolution as I am, though there are many who do not believe in natural selection having done much,— but this is a relatively unimportant point. Your reviewer is in the position of the men who stuck up so long & so stoutly that the sun went round the earth. There are several other articles which I shall be glad to read, especially that on Lyell.— I liked the book so much that I was quite sorry when I finished it. Nevertheless in my opinion, it would have been greatly improved if about 100 pages had been struck out of each volume.

Pray believe me | Yours very faithfully | Charles Darwin

National Library of Scotland (John Murray Archive) (Ms. 42513 ff. 51–52)

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