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Letter 2517

Darwin, C. R. to Herschel, J. F. W.

11 Nov [1859]

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    Sends a copy of Origin as a measure of his respect and in recognition of the obligation he feels he owes to JFWH's book [A preliminary discourse on the study of natural philosophy (1831)]. "Scarcely anything in my life made so deep an impression on me."


Down Bromley Kent [Ilkley]

Nov. 11th

My dear Sir John Herschel

I have taken the liberty of directing Murray to send you a copy of my book on the Origin of species, with the hope that you may still retain some interest on this question.— I know that I ought to apologise for troubling you with the volume & with this note (which requires no acknowledgment) but I cannot resist the temptation of showing in this feeble manner my respect, & the deep obligation, which I owe to your Introduction to Natural Philosophy. Scarcely anything in my life made so deep an impression on me: it made me wish to try to add my mite to the accumulated store of natural knowledge

With much respect | I beg leave to remain | Yours sincerely | Charles Darwin

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    f1 2517.f1
    Herschel 1831. CD read the work soon after it was published (Correspondence vol. 1, letter to W. D. Fox, [15 February 1831]), and his annotated copy is in the Darwin Library–CUL. CD referred to the great influence this work had had on him in Autobiography, pp. 67–8.
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