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Darwin Correspondence Project

To B. J. Sulivan   3 January 1880

Down | Beckenham. Kent.

Jan. 3. 1880.

My dear Sulivan.

I return you your Xmas good wishes with all my heart, and may you live for many years to do good to others and to make all around you happy. Your extracts about the Fuegians are extremely curious & have interested me much.1 I have often said that the progress of Japan was the greatest wonder in the world but I declare that the progress of Fuegia is almost equally wonderful—2

I am very sorry to hear about poor Mellersh; his case seems hopeless. He told me some time ago how much he suffered from Sciatica and said he could not wish his worst enemy to suffer nearly so much.—3 I have nothing to tell you about myself as my days are uniformly spent in working on the Physiology of Plants. I am pleased to hear that you like my little life of Dr. Eras4

With all good wishes, believe me | My dear Sulivan. | Yours very sincerely. | Charles Darwin.


CD had remarked on the progress of Japan in his letter to E. S. Morse, 21 October 1879 (Correspondence vol. 27).
Arthur Mellersh had mentioned his severe sciatica in his letter of 13 February 1879 (Correspondence vol. 27).


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


Returns BJS’s Christmas good wishes.

The progress of Tierra del Fuego is almost as wonderful as that of Japan.

Is sorry to hear about Mellersh.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Bartholomew James Sulivan
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 147: 515
Physical description
C 1p

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 12399,” accessed on 25 June 2022,