To W. D. Fox [3 November 1829]
My dear Fox
I am ashamed at not having written to you before, & more especially as Aiken gave me some very important messages to you, about Cocks & Hens,1 no less than ten days ago: Imprimis, there are two hatches: no mother: price of larger 3s each & of the lesser chickens 2"6. He is afraid you will think them very dear, but could not get them cheaper.—
I am sure you will be very sorry to hear, that my Father has been very ill, but is now I hope steadily but slowly getting better: The cause of his illness is a deep seated Erysipelus in his neck, attended with great deal of Fever. I am afraid he has undergone a great deal of suffering: & that it will be some time before he quite recovers the effect of it. I should have gone down to Shrewsbury, only that his Medical attendants particularly insisted that he should be kept as quiet as possible: My sisters appear to have been terribly alarmed, as I suppose on Wednesday he was in imminent danger.—
Erasmus has been staying here for a few days, & we passed the time very pleasantly chiefly in the Fitzwilliam2 & he would have stayed some time longer, only that he went to London, in order to be in readiness to go down to Shrewsbury if my Father should be worse: None of the Cam: Entomologists have done anything to speak of, but I am going to Bottisham to see Mr. Jenyns cabinet, & I believe he is coming to see mine: Professor Henslows3 parties go on very well. the last was the pleasantest I was ever at:
I have been very idle since I have come up, but have had some good hunting: Rob〈in〉son has been riding to th〈e〉 ad〈mir〉at〈ion〉 〈of〉 every body. I think he is the best rid〈er〉 I ever saw.—
I am very sorry that you are so undecided as to when you will come up to Cambridge. I do hope it will eventually take place. I shall go down very early in order to see my Father.—& return early in the next Term to read for my little Go.
Yours very sincerely | C. Darwin
CD’s father has been very ill, but is now slowly improving.
Writes of Leonard Jenyns’ cabinet and J. S. Henslow’s parties.