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Darwin Correspondence Project

From B. P. Brent   2 September 1864

Dallington | nr. Robertsbridge | Sussex

Septr. 2nd. 1864—

Dear Sir,

I am very sorry to hear that you have been so ill but sincerely hope ere this that you are restored to health.

I am sorry to say I did not succeed in obtaining the appointment to the Poultry department of The Field though Miss Watts interested herself on my behalf1   Mr. Tegetmeier2 has the place now—

I am glad to say my law affairs are at last come to an end   the expenses have been heavy amounting to over nine hundred pounds, but I must be thankful it is no worse as had I not defended myself I have no doubt I should have lost everything.3

I have to thank you for your kindness to me during my greatest distress and beg you to permit me to return what you so kindly sent me and for which I enclose a cheque.4

I am now looking out for a more comfortable house with a few acres of land that I may be able to keep a cow or two, and so have milk butter eggs, poultry, pork corn potatoes and vegetables of my own growing which I hope may relieve the expense of house keeping—

Hoping to hear a better account of your health. | believe me | My dear Sir | Yours much obliged | B P Brent.

To | C Darwin Esqr


See letter from B. P. Brent, 18 June 1864. Brent had asked CD to write a reference to support him in the event of his applying for the post of pigeon and poultry editor of the Field; Elizabeth Watts had been the previous poultry editor.
William Bernhard Tegetmeier was the editor of the pigeon and poultry department of the Field until 1907 (Field, 23 November 1912, p. 1070).
Brent had been involved in a lawsuit since 1862 (see Correspondence vol. 10, letter from B. P. Brent, 15 July 1862, and this volume, letter from B. P. Brent, 18 June 1864). Files concerning B. P. Brent’s lawsuit in Chancery are available at the National Archives (TNA) (C 15/359/B255, cause no. 1857 B255 (Brent v Boyton) and C 15/360/B287, cause no. 1857 B287 (Brent v Briggs)).
CD’s letter to Brent enclosing the loan has not been found. An entry in CD’s Account book–banking account (Down House MS) dated 6 September 1864 records ‘Payment by Mr Brent of Loan (Capital paid up [£]25’.


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


Did not get appointment to poultry department of the Field; W. B. Tegetmeier has the position.

His lawsuit concluded well but expensive. Thanks CD for aid during his distress; encloses cheque.

Letter details

Letter no.
Bernard Peirce Brent
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Dallington, Sussex
Source of text
DAR 160: 303
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4607,” accessed on 28 January 2022,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 12