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Darwin Correspondence Project

DCP-LETT-102A

To C. T. Whitley    [12 July 1831]1

Shrewsbury

Tuesday

My dear Whitley

My conscience smote me much on receiving your letter.— The reason I did not write sooner, was that I kept on hoping that I might have come in propriâ personâ.— I am at present mad about Geology & I daresay I shall put a plan which I am now hatching, into execution sometime in August, viz of riding through Wales & staying a few days at Barmouth on my road.—2 Even if I was to come there, I should not be of much assistance to Mr. D. B. or indeed Mr. D B to me, as I much suspect his pronunciation.3 I get on very slowly with Spanish. the number of words is quite terrifying & the number of meanings to each word is still more discouraging.—4 I must contrive to pay you a visit, & as for Lowe, the number of facts he must have picked up, must be worth any thing.—5 I heard a Coachman the other day call a broken-winded, spavined horse, a “faggot of misery”. I thought to myself, the man must be a friend of Lowes. I heard from Watkins yesterday6 he says, he finds them so devilish familiar at home, that he is obliged to take a little tour in order to protect himself.— He intends seeing Grey & Cavendish at Tremadock, & most likely Barmouth.7 I should like much to meet him there With Lowes assistance, we might have a good deal of instructing conversation.—

You do not deserve even so long a letter, as I have written. You do not even mention how you like Barmouth, whom you have there, what you do &c &c &c.— I think I shall most certainly see you in August8 till then, believe me dear Whitley | yours Chas Darwin.—

Footnotes

1
The Tuesday before the date of the postmark. CD apparently held on to the letter before posting it.
2
CD went on a brief geological tour in North Wales, part of it in the company of Adam Sedgwick,in August 1831 (see letters from Adam Sedgwick, 4 September 1831 and 18 September 1831).
3
Not identified.
4
CD studied Spanish in July 1831 in the hope of carrying out a natural history excursion to Tenerife.
5
Henry Porter Lowe was an undergraduate at Trinity Hall, Cambridge. He and his younger brother Robert Lowe were in Barmouth in August 1831 (Martin 1893, 1: 19–20). See also Barrett 1974,p. 149.
6
Frederick Watkins was a friend of CD at both Shrewsbury School and Cambridge.
7
William Scurfield Grey and George Henry Cavendish were mutual friends of CD and Whitley at Cambridge.
8
CD apparently visited Whitley in Barmouth. See letter to Charles Whitley, [9 September 1831].

Summary

He is "mad about Geology" and plans to ride through Wales in August with a few days at Barmouth.

Some humorous gossip.

Letter details

Letter no.
DCP-LETT-102A
From
Darwin, C. R.
To
Whitley, C. T.
Sent from
Shrewsbury
Source of text
Endorsement: ‘July 20 1831’
Physical description
3pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 102A,” accessed on 24 August 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-102A

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