Caroline disapproves of his not washing.
My Dear friend
you must know that after my Georgraphy, she said I should go down to ask for Richards poney, just as I was going, she said she must ask me not a very decent question, that was whether I wash all over every morning no then she said it was quite disgustin then she asked me if I did every other morning, and I said no then she said how often I did, and I said once a week, then she said of cour you wash your feet every day, and I said no, then she begun saying how very disgusting and went on that way a good while, then she said I ought to do it, I said I would wash my neck and shoulders, then she said you had better do it all over then I said upon my word I would not, then she told me, and made me promise I would not tell, then I said, why I only wash my fett once a month at school, which I confess is nasty, but I cannot help it, for we have nothing to do it with, so then Caroline pretended to be quite sick, and left the room, so then I went and told erasmus, and he bust out in laughing and said I had better tell he to come and wash them her self, besides that she said she did not like sitting by me or Erasmus for we smelt of not washing all over, there we sat arguing away for a good while.
I remain your affectionately
Justice [burst] w[ith] a nose as big as your fist
January the 2, 1822
The second letter today
- f1 1k.f1The friend has not been identified. See this volume, Supplement, letter to Dear Friend, 1 January 1822, n. 1.
- f2 1k.f2CD refers to his sister Caroline Sarah Darwin. Caroline had taught CD at home before he started attending school and was presumably supervising his studies during the school holiday (see Autobiography, p. 22, and this volume, Supplement, letter to Dear Friend, 1 January 1822, n. 1).
- f3 1k.f3Richard or Richards has not been further identified.
- f4 1k.f4On the sanitary arrangements at Shrewsbury School in the early nineteenth century, see Oldham 1952, p. 155.
- f5 1k.f5Erasmus Alvey Darwin.
- f6 1k.f6Since this letter appears in the book immediately after the letter to Dear Friend, 4 January 1822 (this volume, Supplement), it has been given a clear date of 4 January. The written date, 2 January, is presumably a mistake.