Everything in Wallace's sketch also appears in CD's sketch of 1844. A year ago CD sent a short sketch of his views to Asa Gray. Can CD honourably publish his sketch now that Wallace has sent outline of his views? "I would far rather burn my whole book than that he or any man shd. think that I had behaved in a paltry spirit." Does not believe Wallace originated his views from anything CD wrote to him.
Down Bromley Kent
My dear Lyell
I am very very sorry to trouble you, busy as you are, in so merely personal an affair. But if you will give me your deliberate opinion, you will do me as greata service, as ever man did, for I have entire confidence in your judgment & honour.—
There is nothing in Wallace's sketch which is not written out much fuller in
my sketch copied in 1844, & read by Hooker some dozen years ago. About a year ago I sent a short sketch of which I have copy of my
views (owing to correspondence on several points) to Asa Gray, so that I could most
truly say & prove that I take nothing from Wallace. I
If I could honourably publish I would state that I was induced now to publish a sketch
(& I sh
This is a trumpery affair to trouble you with; but you cannot tell how much obliged I
By the way would you object to send this & your answer to Hooker to be forwarded to me, for then I shall have the opinion of my two best & kindest friends.— This letter is miserably written & I write it now, that I may for time banish whole subject. And I am worn out with musing.
I fear we have case of scarlet-fever in House with Baby.— Etty is weak but is recovering.—
My good dear friend forgive me.— This is a trumpery letter influenced by trumpery feelings.
Yours most truly | C. Darwin
I will never trouble you or Hooker on this subject again.—
- f1 2294.f1The date is taken from the endorsement, although the words ‘June 1858’ appear not to be in Lyell's hand. The date, however, is confirmed by CD's reference to the illness of Charles Waring Darwin (see n. 8, below). The only Friday during the baby's fever was 25 June. See also the following letter.
- f2 2294.f2See letter to Charles Lyell, 18 [June 1858]. Lyell may have written a letter to Alfred Russel Wallace about Wallace's manuscript and sent it to CD to be forwarded to Wallace. The letter has not been found. From CD's remarks, it appears that Lyell had subsequently become anxious that Wallace might in some way utilise his comments. See also letter to A. R. Wallace, 6 April 1859.
- f3 2294.f3Joseph Dalton Hooker read CD's essay of 1844 (DAR 7; Foundations, pp. 57–255) early in 1847 (see Correspondence vol. 4).
- f4 2294.f4Correspondence vol. 6, letter to Asa Gray, 5 September . The copy of the manuscript to which CD refers is in DAR 6; it is transcribed in Appendix III.
- f5 2294.f5Although Lyell had urged CD to publish a brief account of his views in 1856, CD had given up the idea of a short sketch in favour of a much longer work (see Correspondence vol. 6, letter from Charles Lyell, 1–2 May 1856, and letter to Charles Lyell, 3 May ).
- f6 2294.f6See Correspondence vol. 6, letter to Charles Lyell, 3 May .
- f7 2294.f7See letter to A. R. Wallace, 6 April 1859.
- f8 2294.f8See the two letters to J. D. Hooker, [29 June 1858].
- f9 2294.f9Emma Darwin recorded in her diary that Charles Waring Darwin was taken ill on 23 June 1858. On 27 June, she noted: ‘Baby worse’.