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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Edward Cresy   19 October [1865]1

Down, Bromley, Kent

Oct: 19th.

Dear Cresy

My father allowed my brother and self at Cambridge £300 per annum.2 I should have allowed my son the same, but having five of them I told them that was too much, so I have given them £260; but my eldest son got a scholarship worth about £20,3 and I expect I shall have to allow George something extra; as it is, I pay for his private tutor, and when he stays beyond term time all additional expenses.4

George enjoyed his visit with you, and I thank you cordially for your valuable advice.5

My health steadily improves but only slowly.6

Dear Cresy, | Yours sincerely | Ch. Darwin


The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from Edward Cresy, 18 October 1865.
CD refers to his father, Robert Waring Darwin, and his brother, Erasmus Alvey Darwin. Robert Waring Darwin had also given CD £200 to settle his debts at the end of his final term (see Correspondence vol. 1, letter to W. D. Fox, [11 May 1831]).
William Erasmus Darwin is listed as a scholar at Christ’s College, Cambridge, in 1859 (Cambridge University calendar 1860, p. 311).
CD’s Classed account book (Down House MS) records, under the heading ‘Boys & William’, payments to George of £140 on 10 October 1864, £65 on 1 January, 1 April, and 2 October 1865, and £18 on 24 October 1865; payments to ‘Routh private tutor’ of £8 on 31 January 1865 and £16 on 3 July 1865 are also recorded. George’s tutor was Edward John Routh, a highly successful mathematics coach at Cambridge (Alum. Cantab., DNB).


Alum. Cantab.: Alumni Cantabrigienses. A biographical list of all known students, graduates and holders of office at the University of Cambridge, from the earliest times to 1900. Compiled by John Venn and J. A. Venn. 10 vols. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1922–54.

Cambridge University calendar: The Cambridge University calendar. Cambridge: W. Page [and others]. 1796–1950.

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

DNB: Dictionary of national biography. Edited by Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee. 63 vols. and 2 supplements (6 vols.). London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1912. Dictionary of national biography 1912–90. Edited by H. W. C. Davis et al. 9 vols. London: Oxford University Press. 1927–96.


Discusses income provided for sons at Cambridge.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Edward Cresy, Jr
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 143: 325
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4639,” accessed on 19 September 2020,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 13