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Darwin Correspondence Project

Letter of recommendation for Syms Covington   29 May 1839

I have known Syms Covington for more than eight years, during the whole of that period, his conduct has been perfectly satisfactory. He accompanied me as servant in the voyage of H.M.S. Beagle, round the world, and made himself generally useful. He assisted me then as clerk, and this has been his chief employment since that voyage.— He writes an excellent hand, and understands something of accounts.— In circumstances of difficulty he has always behaved with prudence.— In the management of my affairs (and of his own) he has invariably acted with economy. I have never once seen him in the least degree affected by any spirituous liquor.— I have constantly been in the habit of trusting him both with large and small sums of money, and have good reason to believe he is trust worthy in the highest degree. The misfortune of a slight deafness is the sole draw back to his advancement in life

Charles Darwin 12 Upper Gower St. London

May 29th.— 1839.—


A letter of reference for Syms Covington.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
London, Upper Gower St, 12
Source of text
Mitchell Library, Sydney (MLMSS 2009/108: 6)
Physical description
ALS 3pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 514,” accessed on 20 April 2024,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 2