From John Murray 9 January 1
My Dear Sir
I think you take too much to heart the amount of the bulk of your MS— I am by no means disheartened & do not contemplate at all throwing up the publication2
Your suggestion of printing technical details in smaller type is a very good one & will relieve us of part of the dilemma3
But before I return your MS to be marked with red I beg you to consent to the carrying out of an Experiment suggested by yourself viz—testing the substance of the MS by its effects on a man of Letters & good information—not a man of science & awaiting the impression made on him by it—
I send the MS. yesterday to such a person a friend of mine, in about a week I shall have his answer & will give you the result4
I remain | My Dear Sir | Yours very sincerely | John Murray
The printer will send you rough proofs of the cuts, wch you may insert with their titles in the places of the MS where they come in5—in case this is not already done.
Ch Darwin Esq
CD should not be discouraged by the bulk of Variation. CD’s suggestion to print technical details in small type is good.
Murray has sent MS to a "man of letters and good information" as an experiment to test its effect. Has no intention of throwing up publication.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 5354,” accessed on 25 April 2017, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-5354