To W. D. Fox 24 August 
Down. | Bromley. | Kent. S.E.
My dear Fox
It is always a pleasure to me to hear from you & about you, patriarch as you are with your countless children, & grand children—1 I feel a mere dwarf by your side. My own children are all well & two of my boys are touring in Norway.2 Poor Susan is in a terrible suffering state & I fear there is no hope for her except the one & last hope for all.3
We expect Caroline here with her three girls on Monday & I will give her your kind enquiries.4 As for myself my health is very decidedly better though I am not very strong. I attribute my improvement partly to Bence Jones’ diet & partly, wonderful to relate, to my riding every day which I enjoy much.5 I don’t believe in your theory of moderate mental work doing me any harm—any how I can’t be idle.6 I am making rapid progress with my book on domesticated animals which I fear will be a big one & has been laborious from the number of references.7 I hope to begin printing towards the close of this close of this year & when it is completed I will of course send you a copy, as indeed I am bound to do as I owe much information to you.8 I should have begun printing before this had I not lost nearly three months by the troublesome labour of largely correcting a new edit. of the Origin.9 I think I have heard of hybrids between the Sphinx-moths which you mention; I shall be surprised if the hybrids are fertile10
Believe me, my dear old Friend | yours affectly | Charles Darwin
Family news. Describes [final] illness of Susan Darwin [d. 3 Oct 1866]. CD’s health better.
Making rapid progress on Variation.
Has heard of hybrids between moths mentioned by WDF.
Work on [4th] edition of Origin has delayed Variation.
- Letter no.
- Darwin, C. R.
- Fox, W. D.
- Sent from
- Source of text
- Smithsonian Institution Libraries, Dibner Library of History of Science and Technology
- Physical description
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 5197,” accessed on 27 March 2017, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-5197