From H. W. Bates 2 May 1
22 Harmood St. Haverstock Hill N.W.
My dear Mr Darwin
I have received both your letters containing remarks on my book & need not say how well satisfied I feel with them.1 From all quarters, strangers & friends, the opinions are favourable. It is most curious; all find pleasure in the book, Darwinians, Calvanistic church ministers, Dissenting parsons, hard-headed men of business; women, old men & boys; philosophic naturalists & species grubbers. It makes one feel contented to be the author on the score of literary fame alone but more substantial rewards are not wanting for Mr Murray has given me a handsome sum (£250) although the edition (1250) is far from sold out.2 He has behaved in the most friendly manner to me the friendliness visibly increasing every day.
I cannot forget that all this is due primarily to yourself who gave me so favourable an introduction to a publisher.3 Not only that, if it had not been for your spurring me on I am quite sure the book would never have been written. As long as I live I shall remember these things & wish it were within the limits of etiquette to make them public. Murray said to me on Wednesday “I am very glad I am the publisher of the book”.
Your former letter in which was a quotation from a letter of Asa Gray’s gave me much pleasure4 I find there is no end to the instruction that may be drawn from these cases of mocking butterflies; every time I reflect on them some new deduction flows forth, so that I think I have matter enough for another paper which might be illustrated by the same plates. Mr Wallace came last Sunday to spend the evening with me & after examining all my specimens of these mockers, came to the conclusion that all Nature does not furnish so plain & striking a case of the origin of species & of new & complex adaptations to new conditions, by the simple process of variation & Natural Selection.5 But my first task will be to write a paper on the general subject of origin by segregation of local races.6
Believe me | Yours sincerely | H W Bates
His satisfaction at CD’s acceptance of book as well as total public acceptance. Murray has given him a £250 advance. His pleasure at Asa Gray’s words.
Next task will be to write on origin [of species] by segregation of local races.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4138,” accessed on 14 February 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-4138