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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Robert Fitch   24 January [1851]

Down Farnborough Kent

Jan 24th

My dear Sir

At last I have the great happiness to be able to say that I have finally compared your specimens with Proof-Plates & have at last done with them. I thank you once again very sincerely for your very long loan of them:1 they have been of the greatest use to me.—2 None have been in the least injured in passing through Mr Sowerby’s hands.— You will remember that some were injured in first coming here & that with your permission I removed several from the Challk.—3 I am certain, that they are scientifically in a more valuable state than when sent, though some are not so ornamental.—

I this morning packed up about half, each one or two specs in a separate pill-box, so that none will be injured I hope. All will have name on lid or on separate label: some valves are folded up in silver paper.— If I do not hear to the contrary before Wednesday morning I will send all in a Box to Mess Barclay 95. Farringdon St.— —

If you shd generously be inclined, as you once hinted, to give me any duplicate specimens, I wd gladly accept them for the British Museum, to which I intend giving all my own collection & all that I can collect.4

Once again with my sincere thanks | I remain | dear Sir | Your’s’ very faithfully | C. Darwin

Footnotes

CD had held many of Fitch’s specimens for over a year. See Correspondence vol.4, letter to Robert Fitch, [December? 1850].
In the preface to Fossil Cirripedia (1851): v, CD wrote: ‘To Mr. Fitch, of Norwich, I here beg to return my thanks, for having allowed me to keep, during several months, his unrivalled collection of Cirripedia from the Upper Chalk of Norwich,—the fruit of twenty years’ labour.’ Fitch had supplied type specimens of Scalpellum fossula, S. maximum, Pollicipes angelini, P. striatus, and P. fallax.
See Correspondence vol. 4, letters to Robert Fitch, 10 January [1850], 15 January [1850], [23 January 1850], and [6 February 1850].
Withers 1928–53, which discusses the cirripedes presented to the British Museum by CD, does not list any specimens from Fitch. According to Withers 1928–53, 2: 185, Fitch’s collection, including specimens described by CD, is in the Norwich Castle Museum.

Summary

Collection of fossil cirripedes to be returned. Would RF be willing to donate duplicates to the British Museum?

Letter details

Letter no.
DCP-LETT-1387
From
Darwin, C. R.
To
Fitch, Robert
Sent from
Down
Source of text
Norwich Castle
Physical description
4pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 1387,” accessed on 3 December 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-1387

letter