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Letter 6718

Darwin, C. R. to Murray, John (b)

29 Apr [1869]

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    Thanks JM for Quarterly Review. A. R. Wallace's article inimitably good – and a triumph that it appears where it will make B[ishop] of O[xford] and Owen gnash their teeth.

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    Delighted at the sale of F. Müller's book.

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    Thinks he has brought Origin up to "present standard of science" [5th ed. (June 1869)].

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    Slow progress on Descent.

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    His horse rolled over him, but he is recovering rapidly.


Down. | Beckenham | Kent. S.E.

Ap. 29th

My dear Sir

Some of the Ladies took off the cover of Quarterly & burnt it, & I had no idea who sent it. I thank you sincerely for the present. The article by Wallace is inimitably good & it is a great triumph that such an article shd. appear in the Quarterly, & will make the B. of O. & Owen gnash their teeth. My neighbour, Sir J. Lubbock, who had no idea who wrote it, was very much struck with the article, as extraordinarily well done.—

I am delighted to hear of sale of Fritz Müller.

It is good news that you will print 2000 copies of Origin at 14s, for I think I have brought it up to present standard of Science, as the cost of 6 weeks work.

I am making slow, but sure progress with my present book.—

Thanks for your kind enquiries about my health: my horse rolled over me & hurt me rather seriously, but I have made a surprisingly quick recovery.

My dear Sir | Yours very sincerely | C. Darwin

    Footnotes Add

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    f1 6718.f1
    The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from John Murray, 28 April [1869].
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    f2 6718.f2
    The Quarterly Review was published by John Murray; he had evidently sent the issue containing an anonymous review by Alfred Russel Wallace that discussed CD's theory of natural selection ([Wallace] 1869b; see letter from John Murray, 28 April [1869]). CD also refers to the bishop of Oxford, Samuel Wilberforce, and Richard Owen, both notable opponents of CD's theory. The `Ladies' would have been Emma Darwin, Henrietta Darwin, and Elizabeth Darwin; it is not known why they burned the cover.
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    f3 6718.f3
    John Lubbock.
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    f4 6718.f4
    See letter from John Murray, 28 April [1869] and n. 2.
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    f5 6718.f5
    CD refers to Origin 5th ed. and to Descent.
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    f6 6718.f6
    See letter to A. R. Wallace, 14 April 1869 and n. 12.
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