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Darwin Correspondence Project

DCP-LETT-9774

From T. H. Huxley To St. G. J. Mivart   [23 December 1874]

Dear Mivart

I am much obliged for the letter which you have sent me in reply to the message which Mr Roberts was kind enough to convey from me— The letter is marked private & confidential, & I have endeavoured to respect your wishes in that matter So far as such a course may be consistent with justice to those concerned 〈    〉 〈    〉 with its contents.

You tell me that you now regret the publication of the attack on Mr G. Darwin, & that the impression made upon your mind by his article, & under the influence of which you wrote, is not to be justified— And I gather that this regret & conviction that your attack was not justifiable have existed in 〈    〉 〈    〉 mind for some months— in fact ever since the article was published.

Under these circumstances, had I been in your position, there were two things I shd have felt it my duty to do. In the first place I should have written to Mr G. Darwin or to Mr D.— with whom you have been in friendly correspondence & offered him the fullest & frankest apology I cd put into words, & in the second place, I 〈    〉 〈    〉 requested the Ed. of the 〈    〉 to insert a note fully & fairly retracting all that cd be considered unjust & therefore offensive to Mr. G. D—

You did neither of these things, & when an apology was extorted from the J.— what appeared presumably with your sanction, if not from your hand, was a defence rather than a retractation.

Proceedings of this kind are not in accordance with what I understood to be the rules by which men shd endeavour to guide their conduct— & as I concur with Mr G. D that the charges made & insinuated against him are, as he says “absolutely false”—it will be obvious to you that our views on those points which I hold to be the most important of all to mankind, are too hopelessly divergent to readers familiar intercourse between us pleasant or adviseable

I am | Yours very truly | T. H. H—

Summary

A severe letter of rebuke to Mivart for his attack on G. H. Darwin.

Letter details

Letter no.
DCP-LETT-9774
From
Huxley, T. H.
To
Mivart, St G. J.
Sent from
unstated
Source of text
DAR 166: 336
Physical description
6pp damaged †

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 9774,” accessed on 29 August 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-9774

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