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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Edward Blyth   10 December [1866]1

Down Bromley Kent

Dec. 10th

My dear Mr Blyth

I hope that you will forgive me troubling you; when I had the very agreeable walk with you at Zoolog. Gardens,2 you said that you shd. give in “Land & Water” case of tame deer in Isd. of Aral sea.— I have carefully looked in vain for this account.3

Will you have the kindness to give the Vol. year & page in Geograph. Journal, where I can find this account & oblige me much?4

Believe me | Yours very faithfully | Ch. Darwin


The year is established by the reference to Blyth’s article in Land and Water (see n. 3, below).
CD had been in London from 22 until 29 November 1866 (Emma Darwin’s diary (DAR 242)); he refers to the Zoological Gardens in Regent’s Park.
Blyth’s notice on the ‘tame deer’ (see n. 4, below) appeared in Land and Water, 15 December 1866, p. 495, under the pseudonym ‘Zoophilus’, which he used for his contributions to the paper. The Aral Sea, which is an inland sea or salt lake, is in central Asia in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
The reference is to the account of tame saigas (Saiga tatarica) by Aleksey Ivanovich Butakoff in his ‘Survey of the Sea of Aral’, published in the Journal of the Royal Geographical Society (Butakoff 1852, pp. 94–5).


Butakoff, Aleksey Ivanovich. 1852. Survey of the Sea of Aral. By Commander Alexey Butakoff, of the Imperial Russian Navy. Communicated by Sir Roderick I. Murchison. [Read 13 December 1852.] Journal of the Royal Geographical Society 23 (1853): 93–101.


Asks for reference to EB’s article about tame deer on island in Aral Sea.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Edward Blyth
Sent from
Source of text
American Philosophical Society (Mss.B.D25.)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4950,” accessed on 2 March 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 14