From J. D. Hooker [26 December 1874]1
My dear Darwin
I have carefully gone through Huxley’s letters— There is nothing to be done till we see whether Mivart will write to you or George.2 I think Huxley’s course has been very successful; & his letter to M. is a model. I cannot but in charity clutch at the hope that M. will make a clean breast of it & in a manner that would disarm further hostilities Nothing that he can do will set him altogether on his legs again with you & your friends: but still so terrible a lesson must be allowed to have its bettering effects, if it has the necessary chastising one. That he is touched is clear from Huxleys letter, & if he would only do all the rest that he ought, we must not be too quick to discover mere self-preservation in the motives.
Meanwhile I shall do nothing till I hear further.
I am personally grateful to Huxley for paving the way for my action— He will doubtless, when I shall ask him, allow me to use his name as authority for Mivart being the author of the article. So there can be no doubt in my mind what my course shall be: whether M. gives as full satisfaction as he ought, or does not. If the first I shall tell him that I am glad he has done so, as it was a matter I must any how have 〈foot of page excised〉 simpler still, & I think I can write a letter which would involve no suspicion of clique.3
I write in haste, I will keep the letters to re-read them before returning them.
We got through Xmas nicely. Major Barnard & his son Henslow were here. My favorite cousin Effie Turner, dear old Tyndall & H. Spencer. My mind swayed to & fro strangely.4
The enclosed was written to my sister,5 please ask Mrs Darwin to read it & please return it— it 〈foot of page excised〉
Has gone over Huxley’s letter, thinks it a model. All must now await developments. If Mivart does not apologise, JDH will write to him.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 9780,” accessed on 22 February 2017, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-9780