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Darwin Correspondence Project

To H. W. Bates   6 February 1874

Down, | Beckenham, Kent.

Feb 6 1874

My dear Bates

Will you be so kind as to send me, addressed “to Orpington Station Kent S.E.R.”, the following books which I find in your catalogue.1

“Jarves. Hist. of the Sandwich I’s”2

“Ellis Narrative, with remarks on S.I.”3

(N.B. please to observe whether S.I. means Sandwich I.s, for Polynesian researches are here entered on yr catalogue by mistake)4

“Simpson— The Sandwich I.s” )

& Progress of events”. )5

“Cheever— Life in the Sandwich I.s”6

“Hill— Travels to the S.I.”7

This makes 5 books, & I do not know whether you can stretch your power so as to lend me so many; but do if you can, & they shall be returned soon—

yours very sincerely | Ch. Darwin

I want to hunt for history of Infanticide in Sandwich Isls. & for population returns.— I have now met with those quoted, but I want the originals.—

P.S. Do I not owe the Society the price of the Classed Catalogue of Books?—


Bates was assistant secretary of the Royal Geographical Society of London (ODNB). CD was working on the second edition of Descent (‘Journal’ (Appendix II)).
CD added information from the census of the Sandwich Islands (now Hawaii) to Descent 2d ed., p. 186; he cited Jarves 1843 on pp. 187, 257.
CD cited Ellis 1826 in Descent 2d ed., pp. 257, 592.
CD was consulting the Classified catalogue of the library of the Royal Geographical Society (G. M. Evans 1871), which included Ellis 1853 (Polynesian researches … in the Society and Sandwich Islands) under the heading Sandwich Islands, as well as under the heading Polynesia.
CD did not cite A. Simpson 1843 in Descent 2d ed.
CD cited Cheever 1851 in Descent 2d ed., pp. 187 n. 43, 257 n. 98.
CD did not cite Hill 1856 in Descent 2d ed.


Orders five works on the Sandwich Islands from the Royal Geographical Society Library for his investigation of infanticide and population trends there.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Henry Walter Bates
Sent from
Source of text
Royal Geographical Society
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 9267,” accessed on 20 September 2019,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 22