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Letter 9868

Darwin, C. R. to Buckley, A. B.

[23 Feb 1875]

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    Expresses his feelings following the death of Charles Lyell.

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Down Beckenham

Feb. 23. 1875

My dear Miss Buckley

I am grieved to hear of the death of my old and kind friend, though I knew that it could not be long delayed, and that it was a happy thing that his life should not have been prolonged, as I suppose that his mind would inevitably have suffered. I am glad that Lady Lyell has been saved this terrible blow. His death makes me think of the time when I first saw him, and how full of sympathy and interest he was about what I could tell him of Coral reefs and South America. I think that this sympathy with the work of every other naturalist was one of the finest features of his character. How completely he revolutionised Geology; for I can remember something of pre-Lyellian days.

I never forget that almost every thing which I have done in science I owe to the study of his great works. Well he has had a grand and happy career, and no one ever worked with truer zeal in a noble cause. It seems strange to me, that I shall never again sit with him and Lady Lyell at their breakfast.— I am very much obliged to you for having so kindly written to me.

Pray give our kindest remembrances to Miss Lyell, and I hope that she has not suffered much in health from fatigue and anxiety.

Believe me, my dear Miss Buckley, | Yours very sincerely | Charles Darwin

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