News of family and friends.
Word that William Clift thinks CD's latest fossils are of much value.
1834 | Sept 30
My dear Charles
We were delighted to receive your letter the week before last dated 6
I do not find I have any thing to tell you that has happened during the last month, but no want of news shall prevent a letter being sent to you the end of every month to tell you my Father is well— I do not remember when I have seen him more pleased, than on receiving your last happy satisfactory letter— saying again, and again, how glad he was to have heard from you & that you were well & safe. it was a great comfort to know you had always been prudent & fortunate enough to get into no difficulties in your several ad- ventures. pray dear Charles do not let the having escaped so long make you careless & daring for the time to come. Sarah Williams dined here the day before yesterday— she is not at all changed by her marriage the same hearty friendly creature she ever was— when she heard that you had left Terra del Fuego and had vowed you would return there no more—she was furious``What a shame! & he promised I should have a letter from him dated from Terra del Fuego''— She desired her best love, & hopes you will receive a letter she wrote directed to Valparaiso—
The Biddulphs are returned from their Swiss Tour— Fanny looking exceedingly thin, but exceedingly pretty— Charles Owen is gone to Rugby & Henry who you left a good little boy is now aiming at being a Dandyfied young man— wearing a worked velvet waistcoat, white gloves & a cane! William Owen is beginning to recover from his accident, stands for a few moments every day & there are great hopes he will escape a stiff joint.
My sisters have been staying a fortnight in Monmouthshire with the John Wedgwoods but I
know nothing worth telling about their visit & I have been for a few days to
Overton—these have been the only outings during the last month—
Marianne is very well but already beginning to fret a little at the prospect of losing
Parky whose fate is at last determined, & to school he is to go next
Easter— I dined at Onslow not long ago & met there a
When I told Nancy how your beard was let to grow—& gave her your goodnatured message that she would take you for an old jew—she burst out crying. I really think poor Nancy looks forward with as much delight to seeing you again as ever my Father or any of us do.
I took Pincher & Nina a walk through some of the Berwick fields & Pincher still remembers your training so well, that though a Hare sprung up just before us & he looked as if he would have given worlds to follow he obeyed & walked close behind me without attempting to have a Hunt—
We have had workmen without end this summer about the House new slating &c, & latterly pulling down & rebuilding the green house on rather a larger scale than before— the wood was so bad that it was not supposed safe—so that we might have had a grand clash of glass some day— the Laboratory is turned into a Laundry is the other alteration Erasmus when he came home in the summer found every thing turned topsy turvy people ironing in his Lab, & a baby in his bed room, the Hensleigh children having taken possession of his room, we not expecting him so soon as he did come—
This is all sad twaddle to send across the world but it must be excused for one day
passes so like another that nothing I have to tell you— So good bye my dear
old Charles God bless you & I hope we may soon have some time to look forward
<to> when we may hope to see you— Ever y
My Fathers kindest lo<ve> <an>d my sisters—
- f1 257.f1The Cambridge Professor of Mineralogy was William Hallowes Miller, but he did not marry until 1844 (DNB). `Murchison' is likely to be the correct name, since the Roderick Impey Murchisons frequented fashionable circles in London, where the Fuegians were lionised, and Murchison was a friend of Colonel John Wingfield of Onslow (see Murchison 1839, pp. 39--40).
- f2 257.f2This letter is missing, as are the other letters from the family for the months of June, July, and August 1834, though CD eventually received them (see letter to Caroline Darwin,  July -- [12 August] 1835).