To Emma Darwin [9 May 1842]
[12 Upper Gower Street]
My dear Emma.
I am anxious for the post today to hear how you are & how the chicks are.— Yesterday felt quite a blank from not hearing— I hope your teeth have not been plaguing you & poor dear old Doddums temper I hope to hear is better.—
On Saturday I went in City & did a deal of Printing business— I came back gloomy & tired— the government money has gone much quicker than I thought & the expences of the coral-volume are greater being, as far as we can judge from 130£ to 140£.— How I am publish the remainder I know not, without taking 2 or 300£ out of the funds—& what will you say to that.— I am stomachy & be blue deviled— I am daily growing very very old, very very cold & I daresay very sly.—1 I will give you statistics of time spent on my coral-volume, not including all the work on board the Beagle— I commenced it 3 years & 7 months ago, & have done scarcely anything besides— I have actually spent 20 months out of this period on it! & nearly all the remainder sickness & visiting!!!
Catty stops till Saturday; notwithstanding all my boasting of not caring for solitude, I believe I should have been dreary without her.— She went to Foundling Church to hear Bishop Thirlwall preach,2 wh. lasted till past two! owing to music & the immortal Fanny stood it all notwithstanding extreme crowd & closeness— Cath. liked sermon & Fanny did not, & I feel sure they differed more than they naturally would have done, to spite each other for their difference over Mr Scot.—3 C. drank tea in evening there & had very pleasant evening—
I am very glad you have not missed seeing the Langtons. when do they go? I hope I shall see them & the little Doddy Secundus.—4
Ask Brodie where is Key of G. Square?5
The colourist has invented a clever plan to save me looking over the maps.— he counts the circles of each separate colour6 & so necessarily detects every error.—
Yesterday I went at 2 oclock & an hour’s hard talk with Horner on affairs of Geolog Soc & it quite knocked me up & this makes my letter rather blue in its early part.—
After long watching the Postman your letter has at last arrived. you cannot tell how much I enjoy hearing about you all.— How strange poor old Doddy seems to be— I grieve he does not get better; I agree with you it wd be very good to try calomel.— How astonishing your walking round Birth Hill, I believe now the country will do you good— What a nice account you give of Charlottes tranquil maternity— I wish the Baby was livlier,—for liveliness is an extreme charm in bab-chicks—
good bye.— I long to kiss Annie’s botty-wotty | C.D.—
Is "stomachy and be-blue-devilled" because of costs of publishing [Zoology and Coral reefs]. Wonders how the remainder [of the Zoology and Geology of "Beagle"] can be published without taking £200 or £300 out of their personal funds.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 626,” accessed on 26 September 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-626