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Darwin Correspondence Project

From J. V. Carus   20 November 1876


Novbr. 20th. 1876

My dear Sir,

I have to thank you very much for the new edition of the Geological Observations. As far as I see there is nothing altered, although I have not yet carefully compared both editions.1 I find even, that the Ponza isles are still called Panza, which is a misprint for ought I know.2 I have written to Herr Koch about the feasibility of giving the plates of Fossils to the Geol. Observ. on South America, which will be translated, I think, in the course of next year3   In the Preface you mention amongst the papers belonging to the set of geological publications that on fine dust. In one of your former letters and in the list of your works, which you kindly sent me, you said that you would not advise me to take this in one complete edition.4 Please let me know, if you wish to have it translated. Perhaps it would be nice to have it, as you quote it in the Journal of Researches5

I am now in full work with the Crossing, which I dictate to a short hand writer.6 So I have the intense pleasure of reading it without being stopped by writing down myself the details, which, of course, I read again through in the translation and revise it carefully with the original   Allow me to ask you about a few doubtful points

p. 35. in table VI. second column gives the Total inches 495,13, but the only fraction in the column is 1/4, so this must be either 1/8 or the sum must be 495, 25.

p. 121. second line below the table: read “self-fertilised” instead of “fertilised.”

p 98. title, you mention the variety of Brassica as “Cattell’s Early Barnes Cabbage.” What is the “Barnes”? Is this the name of a cultivator?7 Ought I to spell it in German “Barnes’”

p. 173 (XX. Compositae). 1st. line: you call a lettuce “Great London Cos var.” What means this “Cos”?

p. 162. Table LVII. right hand column, total in inches ought to be 158,75 (for —,76, it corresponds to —6/8).

The printing of the Volcanic Islands is done and we are now beginning a new print of the Expression together with the Crossing.8

My best wishes for your health. | Believe me | My dear Sir, Yours ever sincerely | J. Victor Carus

CD annotations

3.1 column] tick red crayon
7.1 ought] tick red crayon
Top of letter: ‘(Asa Gray correction p 4 see letter)’9 pencil
FD annotations
3.2 495,25.] ‘it is 14 ∴ it shd be ·25’ pencil
4.1 fertilised.] ‘yesink; ‘12 lines from bottom’ pencil
7.1 75] ‘yes’ pencil
7.1 (for … 6/8). 7.2] deleted pencil
Top of letter: added to CD’s annotation ‘← p 4, footnote, last line for ‘824’ read ‘828’; dele ‘and 844’’ ink


Carus had asked for copies of Volcanic islands and South America (published in 1844 and 1846 respectively by Smith, Elder & Co.) in April 1876 (letter from J. V. Carus, 16 April 1876, letter to J. V. Carus, 24 April 1876). The combined second edition, Geological observations 2d ed., was published by Smith, Elder & Co. in November 1876 (letter from J. D. Hooker, 14 November 1876). Minor alterations were made to the main text (see letter to J. V. Carus, 23 November 1876). Carus’s German translations were published in 1877 (Volcanic islands; Carus 1877a) and 1878 (South America; Carus 1878b).
See Geological observations 2d ed., pp. 18, 29 n. 1, 74. Panza was a misprint for Ponza. Ponza is the largest of the Italian Isole Ponziane or Pontine Islands, formerly sometimes known as the Ponza Isles.
Eduard Koch was the director of E. Schweizerbart’sche Buchhandlung, Carus’s publisher. Carus’s translation of South America was published in 1878 (Carus trans. 1878b); the plates were included.
See Geological observations 2d ed., p. vi. For CD’s brief paper, read on 4 June 1845, ‘An account of the fine dust which often falls on vessels in the Atlantic Ocean’, Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society of London 2 (1846): 26–30, see also Shorter publications, pp. 192–6. In his letter to Carus of 19 March [1874] (Correspondence vol. 22), CD had written, ‘With respect to the few short miscellaneous papers which I have published, I doubt whether they are worth republishing, except perhaps two rather long papers in Transactions of Geological Soc.’ In his letter to Carus of 25 December 1875 (Correspondence vol. 23), he wrote, ‘I have looked through the spare copies of all my papers, and send all that I have; but I do not think that several of them are worth translating.’ It is not known when CD sent a list of works.
Carus was translating Cross and self fertilisation into German (Carus trans. 1877d).
John James Cattell was a nurseryman of Westerham, Kent; James Barnes was a gardener.
The publication date on Carus’s translation of Volcanic islands (Carus trans. 1877a) and the third edition of his translation of Expression (Carus trans. 1877b) is 1877.


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

Cross and self fertilisation: The effects of cross and self fertilisation in the vegetable kingdom. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1876.

Expression: The expression of the emotions in man and animals. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1872.

Geological observations 2d ed.: Geological observations on the volcanic islands and parts of South America visited during the voyage of H.M.S. ‘Beagle’. By Charles Darwin. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1876.

Journal of researches 2d ed.: Journal of researches into the natural history and geology of the countries visited during the voyage of HMS Beagle round the world, under the command of Capt. FitzRoy RN. 2d edition, corrected, with additions. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1845.

Shorter publications: Charles Darwin’s shorter publications, 1829–1883. Edited by John van Wyhe. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 2009.

South America: Geological observations on South America. Being the third part of the geology of the voyage of the Beagle, under the command of Capt. FitzRoy RN, during the years 1832 to 1836. By Charles Darwin. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1846.

Volcanic islands: Geological observations on the volcanic islands, visited during the voyage of HMS Beagle, together with some brief notices on the geology of Australia and the Cape of Good Hope. Being the second part of the geology of the voyage of the Beagle, under the command of Capt. FitzRoy RN, during the years 1832 to 1836. By Charles Darwin. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1844.


Thanks CD for [2d English edition of] Volcanic islands and South America [1876].

Is at work on Cross and self-fertilisation. Asks about some doubtful points.

Letter details

Letter no.
Julius Victor Carus
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 161: 105
Physical description
ALS 3pp †

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 10681,” accessed on 22 September 2023,

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