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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Harriet Lubbock   [December 1848 – 1849]1

Wednesday Even

Dear Lady Lubbock

Pray do not give yourself any trouble about the missing Vol. which, I ought to have said, is of very little value & is sure not to be wanted soon, if ever.— It will turn up of itself some day.— It is covered with brown-paper pasted on, with no title outside. Pray do not think of looking for it, but leave it to chance.

Your Ladyships | Truly obliged. | C. Darwin Thursday. Mg.

Will you be so kind as to tell Sir John, I have received his cheque & will send receipt with microscope,2 when complete


The reference to the microscope relates this letter to the letter to John William Lubbock which follows.
The instrument had been ordered for the Lubbocks’ son John, whose interest in natural history was being encouraged by CD. In an autobiographical sketch, John Lubbock (later Lord Avebury) recalled of CD: ‘He induced my father to give me a microscope, he let me do drawings for some of his books, and I greatly enjoyed my talks and walks with him.’ (Hutchinson ed. 1914, 1: 23).


Belittles the loss of a book borrowed from CD.

Acknowledges cheque in payment for purchase of microscope for John Lubbock.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Harriet Lubbock
Sent from
Source of text
American Philosophical Society (Mss.B.D25.70)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 1041,” accessed on 22 September 2020,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 4