Murray will publish a second edition of the Journal [of researches].
CD has finished first version of South America.
A strange book, The vestiges [of creation (1844)] has appeared and some have attributed it to CD. He is "flattered and unflattered".
Down Bromley Kent
My dear Fox
It is some time since we have had any communication. I write now chiefly to say, that I
heard some little time ago from Shrewsbury, in which they said they had wished to have
asked you to have come to the Shrewsbury Agricult. Meeting, but
some invited & more self-offerers have filled the house, more in my opinion than
ought to have been allowed. I shall keep out of the way. M
We have had Ellen Tollet staying with us, & heard indirectly much of you: the Tolletts & you seem to have many acquaintances in common.
Our children are very well, notwithstanding this most cold-catching weather: poor Emma is as bad as she always is, when she is, as she is. (this last sentence is quite Shakespearian)
As for myself, my most important news is that I have agreed with Murray for a second Edition of my Journal in the Colonial Library in three numbers; & thanks to the Geological fates, I have written my S. American volume the first time over.
The only other piece of news about myself is, that I am turned into a Lincolnshire squire! my Father having invested for me in a Farm of 324 acres of good land near Alford.
Have you read that strange unphilosophical, but capitally-written book, the Vestiges, it has made more talk than any work of late, & has been by some attributed to me.—at which I ought to be much flattered & unflattered.
Ever yours My dear Fox.— | C. Darwin
- f1 859.f1The date is based on CD's completion of the first draft of South America (see n. 8, below).
- f2 859.f2In 1845 the annual meeting of the Royal Agricultural Society took place in Shrewsbury. The principal day of the show was 17 July.
- f3 859.f3Possibly Edward Woollet Wilmot of Worksop Manor, Nottinghamshire, a governor of the Society.
- f4 859.f4The George Henry Hollands and Edward Holland.
- f5 859.f5Elizabeth de St Croix Darwin and her son Robert Alvey Darwin.
- f6 859.f6According to his ‘Journal’ (Correspondence vol. 3, Appendix II), CD left for Shrewsbury on 29 April, returning on 10 May.
- f7 859.f7Emma Darwin was pregnant with her fifth child.
- f8 859.f8CD completed the first draft of South America on 24 April (‘Journal’; Correspondence vol. 3, Appendix II). Regarding the agreement with John Murray, see letter to John Murray, 17 [April 1845].
- f9 859.f9The Beesby farm. CD's Investment Book (Down House MS) shows that he paid £213 13s. 8d. interest to his father on 10 August 1846. The total amount advanced by his father was £13,592 0s. 7
d. See also Keith 1955, p. 222. 1 2
- f10 859.f10[Chambers] 1844.