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Darwin Correspondence Project

From John Tyndall   5 February 1876

5th. Feby 1876

It is not the gift but the altar which sanctifieth the gift.1

And it is not the teapot but the fact that it is Charles Darwin’s teapot that gives it an immortal value in our eyes.2

I will not quit the subject of your postscript until light is let in on every cranny of the question.3

With warm thanks & strong affection, my dear Darwin yours | John Tyndall

Footnotes

Tyndall alludes to Matthew 23:19. ‘Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift?’
CD had ordered a silver tea set as a wedding present (see letter to John Tyndall, 4 February 1876 and nn. 1 and 2, and second letter from John Tyndall, 5 February 1876).
See letter to John Tyndall, 4 February 1876 and nn. 3 and 4. Tyndall had been working on the problem of spontaneous generation.

Summary

JT will not quit the subject [of spontaneous generation] until light is let in on every cranny of the question.

Letter details

Letter no.
DCP-LETT-10381
From
John Tyndall
To
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
unstated
Source of text
John Hay Library, Brown University (Albert E. Lownes Manuscript Collection, Ms. 84.2 (Box 3, Folder 39))
Physical description
1p

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 10381,” accessed on 14 April 2021, https://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/letter/DCP-LETT-10381.xml

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 24

letter