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Darwin Correspondence Project

To H. W. Bates   27 [February 1862]1



My dear Sir

I will write again; but I do not want to lose a post to say that the terms are very favourable: I never heard of such terms being offered for first work.— You may depend he thinks very highly of your Book.—2 I have always agreed for each edition separately, (except for my Journal which I disposed of all at once for much worse terms);3 but I think the terms are so good, I would let Murray do as he likes.—

You might say you should prefer agreeing for only one Edition.—

I am heartily glad.—

Yours | C Darwin


Dated by the relationship to the letter from John Murray, 30 January [1862], the letter to H. W. Bates of 31 January [1862], and to the letter to H. W. Bates, 27 February [1862], all of which relate to negotiations for the publication of Bates 1863.
CD refers to the publisher John Murray, to whom he had recommended Bates’s travel writings (Bates 1863) for publication. See letter from H. W. Bates, 25 January 1862, letter to John Murray, 28 January [1862], letter from John Murray, 30 January [1862], and letter to H. W. Bates, 31 January [1862]. No letter from Bates describing the terms offered by Murray has been found.
CD had earlier recommended that Bates should initially sell only the first edition of his book (see Correspondence vol. 9, letter to H. W. Bates, 25 September [1861]). Owing to his dissatisfaction with his dealings with Henry Colburn over the publication of the first edition of Journal of researches, CD sold the copyright for the work to John Murray in 1845 for £150 (see Correspondence vol. 3, letters to John Murray, 7 March [1845], 12 April [1845], and 2 September [1845]).


Writes that [Murray’s] terms are very favourable; has never heard of such terms offered for a first work. HWB can depend on fact that Murray is pleased with it [The naturalist on the river Amazons].

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Henry Walter Bates
Sent from
Source of text
Cleveland Health Sciences Library (Robert M. Stecher collection)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 3460,” accessed on 27 June 2019,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 10