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Darwin Correspondence Project

From C. M. C. Darwin   27 March 1879

Creskeld, | Otley.

March 27th. 1879.

Dear Mr. Darwin,

I so much wish in answer to your letter that I could send you any of Dr. Darwin’s but I do not think we have ever possessed any. they will all be with the other branch of the Family.1 I have great pleasure in lending the two enclosed Photographs, if you can make any use of them in ornamenting the book you name, and I have ordered another view of the North front of the house at Elston of which we beg your acceptance.2 I was there last summer, and it was looking very nice indeed—

My eldest son had last year given him by an old gentleman a portrait of Dr. E. Darwin from the European Magazine engraved 1795—and it appears to be copied from Wright’s picture.3 Would you like to see it? I have placed it opposite his Life in Miss Meteyard’s “Group of Englishmen” which we have—published 1871.4   I dare say you know it—

With kind regards from Mr. Darwin5 and myself. | Believe me | Yrs. sincerely | C. M. C. Darwin


See letter to C. M. C. Darwin, 24 March 1879. CD had wondered whether Charlotte had any documents of Erasmus Darwin (1731–1802). Charlotte was the granddaughter of Erasmus’s brother William Alvey Darwin.
The photographs of Elston Hall have not been found; a drawing of Elston Hall as it was before 1754, made by Violetta Harriot Darwin, was reproduced in Erasmus Darwin, p. 3.
Charlotte’s eldest son was Francis Alvey Rhodes Darwin. A portrait of Erasmus Darwin engraved by William Bromley appeared in the European Magazine for February 1795, facing p. 75. The caption to the engraving indicated it was made from an ‘original drawing’, but it resembles the painting of Erasmus at the age of 38 made by Joseph Wright (see King-Hele 1999, plate 4a).
Charlotte’s husband was Francis Rhodes Darwin; he had inherited Elston Hall, Nottinghamshire, from her brother, Robert Alvey Darwin.


Erasmus Darwin. By Ernst Krause. Translated from the German by W. S. Dallas, with a preliminary notice by Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1879.

King-Hele, Desmond. 1999. Erasmus Darwin. A life of unequalled achievement. London: Giles de la Mare Publishers.

Meteyard, Eliza. 1871. A group of Englishmen (1795 to 1815), being records of the younger Wedgwoods and their friends, embracing the history of the discovery of photography. London: Longmans, Green, and Co.


They have never had any Erasmus Darwin letters.

Sends photographs [of Elston Hall].

Letter details

Letter no.
Charlotte Maria Cooper Darwin
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 99: 136–7
Physical description
ALS 4pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 11956,” accessed on 2 June 2023,