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Letter 2827

Darwin, C. R. to Gärtner, Emma

9 June [1860]

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    Has long venerated her father [Carl F. von Gärtner]. Looks forward to reading his life. CD will do everything he can to make Gärtner's name more generally known.


Down Bromley Kent

June 9th


I thank you sincerely for your most kind note & for your presents, which I shall value much & shall no doubt receive in due time. I have long venerated your Father & estimated his two great works most highly. I can perfectly well believe that the ``search after truth was the leading principle of his life & labours''; I was thoroughily impressed with this, after reading them; & strict conscientiousness seemed to me their noble & prevailing character.—   I shall be very glad to read something of his life; for I remember some few years ago enquiring on the subject, as I had got to feel so much interest in his great labours; but did not then hear of his life.—

Your Father's name is pretty well known in this country, but not so universally as it ought to be, & not nearly well enough known in France, judging from such French Books as I read. If I can in ever so little degree make it more generally known I shall be pleased; & in my larger work I shall have to quote him far oftener. But your Father's works have enduring merit, & will certainly be of high service to science many years after I am dead & gone.—

With sincere thanks for your letter, which has given me much satisfaction, & with my gratitude for your most kind presents, believe me Madam, with much respect, | Yours sincerely & obliged | Charles Darwin

    Footnotes Add

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    f1 2827.f1
    Dated by the relationship to the letter to Emma G¨artner, 14 July [1860].
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    f2 2827.f2
    Emma G¨artner was the daughter of the late German botanist Karl Friedrich von G¨artner, whose works CD frequently cited in his species manuscript (Natural selection) and in Origin and Variation. The `presents' included engravings of G¨artner and a copy of Gustav J¨ager's obituary notice (J¨ager 1851). J¨ager's biographical notice, inscribed by Emma G¨artner, is in the Darwin Pamphlet Collection--CUL. See letter to Emma G¨artner, 14 July [1860].
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    f3 2827.f3
    CD studied G¨artner's works on hybridisation very closely during the 1850s. His annotated copies of G¨artner 1844 and 1849 are in the Darwin Library--CUL; further notes on these works are in DAR 116. See Correspondence vol. 5.
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