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Darwin Correspondence Project

To A. B. Buckley   14 November 1880

Down Beckenham

Nov. 14th. 1880

My dear Miss Buckley

I am very much obliged to you for sending me your new book, the appearance of which is most elegant.1 I have read the two first chapters and shall hereafter read more; but just at present I have a lot of papers to read on account of work in hand.

I think that you have treated evolution with much dexterity and truthfulness; and it will be a very savage heretic-hunter who will persecute you. I daresay that you will escape, and you will not be called a dangerous woman.— Your plan seems to me an excellent one, and who can tell how many naturalists may spring up from the seed sown by you.— I heartily wish your book all success. At p. 4 I think you ought to except utter deserts, for I believe they support nothing.—2 I believe that you might make an equally interesting book for the young about Plants.

Pray believe me, my dear Miss Buckley, your’s sincerely | Ch. Darwin

I have despatched my paper about Wallace to Huxley and have spoken again to Sir John Lubbock.—3


Buckley’s latest book was Life and her children (Buckley 1880; see also letter to A. B. Buckley, 16 August [1880] and n. 3).
Buckley had remarked: ‘There is no spot on the surface of the earth … which is not filled with life’ (Buckley 1880, p. 4).
CD had sent a draft memorial to Thomas Henry Huxley in support of a civil list pension for Alfred Russel Wallace (see letter to T. H. Huxley, 13 November 1880 and n. 1). CD had previously spoken to John Lubbock about the pension (see letter to A. B. Buckley, 31 October [1880]).


Buckley, Arabella Burton. 1880. Life and her children: glimpses of animal life from the amoeba to the insects. London: E. Stanford.


Comments on her new book [Life and her children (1880)]. "… you have treated evolution with much dexterity and truthfulness".

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Arabella Burton Buckley
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 143: 184
Physical description
C 1p

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 12818,” accessed on 30 November 2023,