skip to content

Darwin Correspondence Project

To Phillip Parker King   [21 January 1836]

[Bathurst, New South Wales]1

My dear Sir

I arrived here yesterday evening, certainly alive, but half roasted with the intense heat.— If my horses do not fail, I shall reach Dunheved2 on Sunday evening & if you are at home, shall have much pleasure in staying with you the ensuing day.— I have seen nothing remarkable in the Geology or indeed I may add in anything else: It appears me, very singular, how very uniform the character of the scenery remains, in so many miles of country. At Mr Walker’s Farm3 I staid one day, & went out Kangaroo hunting, but had not the good fortune even to see one. In the evening however, we went with a gun in pursuit of the Platypi & actually killed one.— I consider it a great feat, to be in at the death of so wonderful an animal.— I shall take advantage of your note of introduction to Mr Hughes & sleep there tomorrow night: if I should hear of anything remarkable in rocks of the neighbouring mountains I might be delayed there one day, in which case I should not reach Dunheved till Monday evening.—

Believe me, Dear Sir | Very sincerely Yours. | Charles Darwin.


Bathurst is located on the banks of the Macquarie River about 100 miles inland from Sydney. CD had arrived there on 20 January (see ‘Beagle’ diary, p. 383).
King had retired to Dunheved, Penrith, N.S.W.
James Walker’s farm was Wallerawang, near Lithgow.


‘Beagle’ diary: Charles Darwin’s Beagle diary. Edited by Richard Darwin Keynes. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1988.


CD informs PPK of his impending arrival at Dunheved, Penrith; news of his journey thus far.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Phillip Parker King
Sent from
Bathurst , N.S.W.
Bathurst NSW
Source of text
Bathurst District Historical Society
Physical description
ALS 3pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 293,” accessed on 3 February 2023,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 1