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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Francis Darwin   [10 June 1877]1

L. H. Pl.2


My dear Frank

Please look in my washing corner in study & on upper shelf, you will find a bottle of dirty salmon-coloured mixture (Waugh) (for eczema) with brush, & little vessel—3


Please send them by William to Southampton.—4 Remember Carbonate of Ammonia.— Also please look in tin box on floor, beneath a pile of paper portfolios, for a portfolio on Worms & in this there is a paper or bundle of papers by William on covering of earth within Beaulieu Abbey spread by earth-worms over the ancient floor.— Do not waste time in hunting for it, but I shd. rather like to look over the notes, as if I am strong enough I will visit the abbey5

Dear old Backy | Your affect Father | C. Darwin

I sometimes fancy I hear Baby talking & spitting beautifully.—6


The date is established by the period of CD’s stay at Leith Hill Place (see n. 2, below), and by the reference to his visit to Beaulieu abbey (see n. 5, below). In 1877, 10 June was a Sunday.
CD stayed at Leith Hill Place in Surrey, the home of his sister, Caroline Sarah Wedgwood, and her family, from 8 to 13 June 1877 (CD’s ‘Journal’ (Appendix II)).
CD had received a treatment for eczema from the London chemists George Waugh & Co. in 1863 (see Correspondence vol. 11, letter to J. D. Hooker, 26 [March 1863]).
CD stayed at William Erasmus Darwin’s house in Bassett, Southampton, from 13 June to 4 July 1877 (CD’s ‘Journal’ (Appendix II)).
William had examined earth at the base of stones at the ruined abbey in Beaulieu, Hampshire, on 5 January 1872 (see Correspondence vol. 20, letter from W. E. Darwin, [1 January 1872], and Correspondence vol. 24, Supplement, letter from W. E. Darwin, [4 January 1872]). CD visited Beaulieu on 22 June 1877 (Earthworms, p. 195).


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

Earthworms: The formation of vegetable mould through the action of worms: with observations on their habits. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1881.


Asks FD to forward some eczema mixture to Southampton for him

and to hunt out notes on earthworm activity at Beaulieu Abbey.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Francis Darwin
Sent from
Leith Hill Place
Source of text
DAR 211: 20
Physical description
ALS 3pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 10995,” accessed on 17 September 2023,