To J. D. Dana 27 September 
Down Bromley Kent
My dear Sir
Pray forgive my troubling you: but my neighbour Mr J. Lubbock has got your work on Crustacea (as yet without the Plates) & has lent it me for a fortnight to look over;1 and I have experienced such great interest in many parts & have found it so suggestive towards my own Cirripedial work, that I cannot resist expressing my thanks & admiration. The Geographical discussion struck me as eminently good.2 The size of the work, & the necessary labour bestowed on it, is really surprising: why, if you had done nothing else whatever, it would have been a magnum opus for life.
Forgive my presuming to estimate your labours, but when I think that this work has followed your Corals & your Geology,3 I am really lost in astonishment at what you have done in mere labour. And then, besides the labour, so much originality in all three works! I only hope that your health has withstood such labour; it frightens me to think of it.—
You will have seen my friend & neighbour, Mr Lubbock has been working a little on the lower Crustacea:4 he is a remarkably nice young man, only a little above 18 years old:—if you can ever give him a little encouragement it would really be a good service, for he has great zeal, & for so young, I shd hope, has done well; & if he can resist his future career of great wealth, business & rank, may do good work in Natural History.
I hope myself to go to press in a month’s time with my last vol. on the Cirripedia: I have got 30 Plates engraved, & shall be very glad to have finished it.—5
Pray do not think for one moment of answering this for there is nothing to answer in it: but excuse my troubling you & believe me with the highest respect. | Yours sincerely | C. Darwin
Admires JDD’s work on Crustacea, corals, and geology.
Commends young John Lubbock to his attention. Hopes JDD can give him encouragement; if he can resist his "great wealth, business, and rank, he may do good work in Natural History".
- Letter no.
- Darwin, C. R.
- Dana, J. D.
- Sent from
- Source of text
- Yale University Library: Manuscripts and Archives (Dana Family Papers (MS 164) Series 1, Box 2, folder 43)
- Physical description
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 1533,” accessed on 5 December 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-1533