To Robert Fitch [28 January 1850]1
Down Farnborough | Kent
My dear Sir
All your specimens arrived quite safely. I have had to thank you so often, that I fear you will think it a mere form, when I say I do so most sincerely.— I am in truth ashamed to think how much trouble you have had & how much expence in postage I have put you to & I wish you would permit me to return the Stamps. Your last lot have interested me, though not containing anything new, yet there is one specimen far more valuable to me than a new species, convincing me that the conclusion at which I arrived viz that P. maximus & sulcatus2 of Sowerby are only varieties, is correct. My work grows on me; by the same morning Post two new species from Mr Morris arrived;3 yet I have certainly broken the neck of the job— Of specimens in a state fit to be recognized described & named, your collection contains. diag I Scalpellum maximum of S. Sowerby4
.—— var. sulcatum .
with many valves I. Scalpellum fossula. nov. spec III Pollicipes productus nov. spec.5 IV. Pollicipes fallax. nov. spec. V.—— striatus nov. spec.ramme
So your collection has added 4 new species to my Monograph.; & removed much difficulty regarding S. maximum & its vars.— I have been much interested by hearing that your collection is fruit of 20 years, which I will allude to in my work.—6
I am sorry to hear of your ill-health;—I know full-well what that is—
Yours sincerely | C. Darwin
Thanks him for cirripede specimens. Discusses RF’s collection.