skip to content

Darwin Correspondence Project

To T. H. Huxley   1 November [1875]1

Down, | Beckenham, Kent. | Railway Station | Orpington. S.E.R.

Nov. 1st

My dear Huxley

I am astounded & disgusted at what you say about Klein. I am very glad he is a foreigner; but it is most painful as I liked the man.—2 No doubt there will be severe & ruinous legislation against physiology.—

Of course I will attend; it will do me no harm, except probably knocking me up for some days. I hope I shall not be nervous, so as to be able to answer any questions reasonably.3 I will come up to 6. Queen Anne St early on Wednesday morning, & will you be so very kind as to let me have a note then telling me the place & hour on Wednesday where I must attend.—4 If Wednesday will not do, will you be so very good as to telegraph to me. If I do not hear, I will be in Q. A. St on Wednesday morning, for my wife thinks I shall get through it best on the same day.— If my head should fail on that day, I would send a note & inform you & attend on Thursday.—

I am very very sorry to trouble you with all your present troubles. Yours affecy.— | C. Darwin


The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from T. H. Huxley, 30 October 1875.
Huxley had heard that Edward Emanuel Klein had professed entire indifference to animal suffering in his testimony to the Royal Commission on vivisection (see letter from T. H. Huxley, 30 October 1875). Klein had assisted CD in his research on insectivorous plants and had visited CD at Down House on 11 April 1874 (see Correspondence vol. 22, letters from E. E. Klein, 14 May 1874 and 10 July 1874; Emma Darwin’s diary (DAR 242)).
CD had been asked to appear before the Royal Commission (see letter from T. H. Huxley, 30 October 1875).
Six Queen Anne Street was the home of CD’s brother, Erasmus Alvey Darwin. CD gave his testimony on Wednesday 3 November (Report of the Royal Commission on vivisection, pp. 233–4).


Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 29 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

Report of the Royal Commission on vivisection: Report of the Royal Commission on the practice of subjecting live animals to experiments for scientific purposes; with minutes of evidence and appendix; 1876 (C.1397, C.1397-1) XLI.277, 689. House of Commons Parliamentary Papers.


Astonished and disgusted at Klein’s evidence. No doubt there will be severe and vicious legislation against physiology. Will give evidence before Commission.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Thomas Henry Huxley
Sent from
Source of text
Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine Archives (Huxley 5: 322)
Physical description
ALS 4pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 10235,” accessed on 20 April 2024,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 23