From Henry Walter Bates 28 January 1865
Royal Geographical Society | 15, Whitehall Place, S.W.
Jan 28 1865
My dear Mr Darwin
The receipt of a letter from you was an unlooked-for pleasure.1 I have had news of your health from time to time, having seized all opportunities of asking from persons likely to know, & had heard lately of your slight improvement. Let us hope it may continue.
You are very kind to enquire after my personal affairs. I have no doubt Dr Hooker2 has kept you well acquainted with what is done & said in Natural History circles & the perusal of the Journals &c keeps you well-informed about the rest. Perhaps there may be a few Entomological items bearing upon Darwinian views, which have not yet fallen in your way.
I was much gratified on receiving the Berlin “Bericht for Entomology 1862” (you know the Natural History reports appear in Wiegmann’s Archives) to find at the very commencement a flattering notice of our paper on the mimetic Butterflies.3 These reports originally were written by Erichson & are now written by Gerstaecker.4 They are usually very skilfully & not very mercifully done. Gerstaecker has seized all the essential points of my paper & repeats them with an evident bias in their favour.5 Being the highest Entomological tribunal I think you will like to have the testimony of this “Bericht” to the absence of, at any rate, any important errors in my facts & arguments.
You will be glad to hear that I like my present position very much.6 I should have preferred a Natural History appointment but I had no chance of one & the birth of one sweet little child with expectation if another forced upon me cogent arguments for accepting the first thing that offered.7 I hope besides to do a little in improving this great Society & assisting Naturalists in travelling.8 The Mantidæ monograph progresses, but about this I will speak in a future letter.9
My dear Mr Darwin | Yours sincerely | H W Bates
Pleased at receiving CD’s letter.
HWB informs him of favourable notice of the mimetic paper [in Wiegmann’s Arch. Naturgesch. 29 (1863) pt 2: 315–19].
He is pleased with his post [Asst. Sec. of Royal Geographical Society].
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4756,” accessed on 12 February 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-4756