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Darwin Correspondence Project

To J. D. Hooker   23 January [1859]

Down Bromley Kent

Jan. 23d

My dear Hooker

I enclose letters to you & me from Wallace.1 I admire extremely the spirit in which they are written. I never felt very sure what he would say. He must be an amiable man. Please return that to me, & Lyell ought to be told how well satisfied he is.— These letters have vividly brought before me how much I owe to your & Lyell’s most kind & generous conduct in all this affair.2 My God how glad I shall be when the abstract is finished & I can rest.—

As you have maps & knowledge I think it will cost you very little trouble to tell me roughly how many miles it is in Himalaya, as crow flies, from the most Eastern ancient low-descending glacier (I presume observed by you) to those observed to the N.W. by Thompson(?)3 or others. I see Jamieson speaks of enormous Boulders in the Kangra valley, somewhere about the Punjab,4 but whether other former Glacial action has been observed still further westerly I know not.— I only want one sentence just to make case as strong as possible of former Glacial action in Himalaya.—5

Yours most truly | C. Darwin


The letter from Alfred Russel Wallace to CD has not been found. See, however, letter from A. R. Wallace to J. D. Hooker, 6 October 1858.
Thomas Thomson had travelled with Hooker during part of his botanical expedition in the Himalayas. He had also collected plants in Kashmir and the western Himalayas, of which he published an account (Thomson 1852).
Jameson 1853, p. 299. William Jameson was superintendent of the Saharanpur botanic garden from 1842 to 1875.


Jameson, William. 1853. On the physical aspect of the Punjab– its agriculture and botany. Journal of the Horticultural Society of London 8: 273–313.

Thomson, Thomas. 1852. Western Himalaya and Tibet; a narrative of a journey through the mountains of northern India, during the years 1847–8. London. [Vols. 5,7]


Wallace has written and is well satisfied with the joint presentation.

CD requests some facts to make case in his abstract for former glacial action in Himalayas.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 115: 3
Physical description
ALS 4pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 2403,” accessed on 28 May 2024,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 7