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Darwin Correspondence Project

From R. F. Cooke   29 November 1877

50, Albemarle St. | W.

Nov. 29. 1877

My dear Sir

Although I wrote to you in the summer to ask if you had any corrections for the “Origin of Species” & said we proposed to print off 1000 No, we did not do so, as on consideration we thought it wd. be better to wait the result of our Trade Sale, as we had a certain number of copies in stock.1

Well having sold so many as 570 at the sale2 & the book keeping up its circulation so well, we think it better to print off at once 2000 rather than 1000. Of course the Title page will be altered accordingly.

As you propose to send some corrections shortly for Cross Fertilization after which we can stereotype & thus release the type—we will get Messrs. Clowes to keep up “Forms of Flowers” for the present.3

Your’s faithfully | Robt. Cooke


See letter from R. F. Cooke, 23 November 1877, and letter to R. F. Cooke, 24 November 1877. On 16 March 1877, Cooke had written to CD that there were 500 copies of Origin in stock, but no letter proposing a reprint of 1000 copies has been found.
Murray, like other publishers, held a ‘sale dinner’ in November, to which the principal booksellers were invited (J. Murray 1908–9, p. 540).


Murray, John. 1908–9. Darwin and his publisher. Science Progress in the Twentieth Century 3: 537–42.

Origin: On the origin of species by means of natural selection, or the preservation of favoured races in the struggle for life. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1859.


Answers CD’s query about number of copies of Origin recently printed. Order to print 2000, rather than 1000, was given after JM’s annual sales showed demand was keeping up.

Cross and self-fertilisation will be stereotyped after CD’s corrections have been made.

Printer will be asked to keep type of Forms of flowers standing, for the present.

Letter details

Letter no.
Robert Francis Cooke; John Murray
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
London, Albemarle St, 50
Source of text
DAR 171: 496
Physical description
ALS 2pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 11260,” accessed on 24 May 2024,