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Darwin Correspondence Project

From George Brettingham Sowerby Jr to Emma Darwin   22 July 1863

45 Gt. Russell St. Bloomsbury, W.C. | London July 22 1863 Dear Mrs. Darwin

The cutting of the block will be— 1. 0. 0

—The Drawing on Wood .10—

Postage of Block . 8

Loan of Trap 6

£1.11. 2

The cutting seems to me rather dear, but I hope it will answer your purpose1

Your very Obliged | G B Sowerby


The reference is to a woodcut of a steel trap for catching vermin which appeared in the pamphlet that Emma and CD had printed privately in August 1863 for distribution (An appeal, p. 2; see Correspondence vol.11, Appendix IX). There is an entry in CD’s Account book–cash account (Down House MS), dated 24 July 1863, recording payment to Sowerby of £1 11s. 2d. George Brettingham Sowerby Jr. ran a business at 45 Great Russell Street, London, selling natural history specimens (Post Office London directory 1863). He was also a leading natural history artist, and had drawn the figures of fossil shells for South America, and the illustrations for Living Cirripedia (1851 and 1854), Fossil Cirripedia (1854), and Orchids (see Correspondence vols. 3, 4, 5, and 9).


An appeal: An appeal. [By Charles and Emma Darwin.] [Bromley, Kent]: [privately printed.] [1863.]

Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 27 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

Fossil Cirripedia (1854): A monograph of the fossil Balanidæ and Verrucidæ of Great Britain. By Charles Darwin. London: Palaeontographical Society. 1854.

Living Cirripedia (1851): A monograph of the sub-class Cirripedia, with figures of all the species. The Lepadidæ; or, pedunculated cirripedes. By Charles Darwin. London: Ray Society. 1851.

Living Cirripedia (1854): A monograph of the sub-class Cirripedia, with figures of all the species. The Balanidæ (or sessile cirripedes); the Verrucidæ, etc. By Charles Darwin. London: Ray Society. 1854.

Orchids: On the various contrivances by which British and foreign orchids are fertilised by insects, and on the good effects of intercrossing. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1862.

Post Office London directory: Post-Office annual directory. … A list of the principal merchants, traders of eminence, &c. in the cities of London and Westminster, the borough of Southwark, and parts adjacent … general and special information relating to the Post Office. Post Office London directory. London: His Majesty’s Postmaster-General [and others]. 1802–1967.

South America: Geological observations on South America. Being the third part of the geology of the voyage of the Beagle, under the command of Capt. FitzRoy RN, during the years 1832 to 1836. By Charles Darwin. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1846.


Sets out estimate for cutting blocks for illustrations of a trap.

Letter details

Letter no.
George Brettingham Sowerby, Jr
Emma Wedgwood/Emma Darwin
Sent from
London, Gt Russell St, 45
Source of text
DAR 157.2: 101
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4251,” accessed on 3 June 2020,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 11