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Letter 497

Darwin, C. R. to Lonsdale, William

[8 Mar 1839]

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    Has finished earthquake paper ["Volcanic phenomena in South America" (1840), Collected papers 1: 53–86]. Gives instructions about a woodcut. There should be an outline map.


My dear Lonsdale

I have at last finished my earth quake paper.— I have read it so often over, thinking more of the sense than the wording, that I cannot improve it.— each word seems by an inevitable doom to stand where it does, & wrong or right, there it must remain for all that I can do to alter it.—

The part of Wood cut no 3. is not to be drawn below the line, which I have made across it,—& the lines, like outlines of hills, are not to be introduced.

There certainly should be an outline map as you suggested, which should extend from the Cordillera on the East to Juan Fernandez on the West, & from Latitude 32o to 45o 50'S.

I hope when I have my paper in proof sheets to improve it without any great corrections, but any previous corrections whatsoever from you will be most gratefully received.—

Believe me | Most truly Yours | Chas. Darwin
12 Upper Gower St


    Footnotes Add

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    f1 497.f1
    Dated on the basis of n. 2, below.
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    f2 497.f2
    ‘On the connexion of certain volcanic phenomena’, Collected papers 1: 53–86. The paper was originally read at the Geological Society on 7 March 1838. According to his ‘Journal’ (Correspondence vol. 2, Appendix II), CD worked on it during the first week of March 1839 and corrected it in September and early October. The references to the woodcut and map suggest the earlier date, before proof sheets were available. The final version was published in the Society's Transactions 2d ser. 5 (1840): 601–31.
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