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Darwin Correspondence Project


To J. D. Hooker   [17 April 1844]1



My dear Hooker

I have waited in vain for Dr Dieffenbach’s answer to my queries to Ehrenberg for more particulars regarding what he wanted, & therefore I am going at once to send off a cargo of little packets to Berlin.— Those which I send are valueless, except to Ehrenberg, & therefore I am going to tell him not to return mine, & will you kindly send me a line by return of Post (to Down) telling me what I shall say to him about returning your more valuable cargo?—

Shall I tell him that the sea-weeds are undescribed & that you intend describing them, which will show that you do not wish him to describe them, or say nothing?—

Did you send my account-papers to Gray & has he returned them to you.2 I hear poor Mr Gray’s name was withdrawn last night from the ballot at the Athenæum. I wish you were in this Club;3 we shd meet sometimes then, but I trust sometime you will pay me a little visit in the wilds of Down. I am going away for a 6 weeks in a few days time.—

Thank you most sincerely for your hint about the printing charges of my work—I am surprised at it, & sorry, but I am truly indebted to you for telling me what you think, & shall be more cautious in futuro.— I am going to call on C. Strzelecki of whose geological doings, I hear great things.

Your geographical-law-letters require being read and reread, & I have only read your last twice, & so will hazard no remarks on it— You seem, however, to have put the case of “typical forms”, in a clearer point of view, than I ever saw it & stripped the word of half, if not all its mystery: I have long suspected that typical & abnormal forms consist only of those, in which a greater or less variety have been created or modifyed— with this excellently!! expressed sentence, I will conclude, | Yours most truly | C. Darwin


Dated on the basis of the letter to C. G. Ehrenberg, 20 April [1844].
John Edward Gray. See letter to J. D. Hooker, 16 March [1844].
Hooker was elected to the Athenæum Club in 1851 (Waugh 1888). ‘Mr Gray’ is not John Edward Gray, who had been a member of the Athenæum since 1835, but possibly his brother, George Robert.

Letter details

Letter no.
Darwin, C. R.
Hooker, J. D.
Sent from
Physical description


Thanks for information on printing charges

and for clarifying "typical forms".

In a few days CD will go away for six weeks.

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 746,” accessed on 12 February 2016,