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Darwin Correspondence Project

To A. R. Wallace   7 March [1867]1

Down. | Bromley. | Kent. S.E.

Mar 7

My dear Wallace

The addresses which you have sent me are capital, especially that to the Rajah; & I have despatched two sets of queries. I now enclose a copy to you & shd be very glad of any answers; you must not suppose the P.S. about memory has lately been inserted; please return these queries as it is my standard copy.2 The subject is a curious one, I fancy I shall make a rather interesting appendix to my Essay on Man.3

I fully admit the probability of “protective adaptation” having come into play with female butterflies as well as with female birds.4 I have a good many facts which make me believe in sexual selection as applied to man, but whether I shall convince any one else is very doubtful.5

Dear Wallace | yours very sincerely | Ch. Darwin


The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from A. R. Wallace, 2 March [1867].
In his letter of 2 March [1867], Wallace sent two addresses for CD, including that of Charles Anthoni Johnson Brooke of Sarawak. CD’s letters and queries about human expression, including the enclosure for Wallace, have not been found. For the most recent extant queries about expression that CD sent to a correspondent, see the enclosure to the letter from Ferdinand von Mueller, 28 February [1867].
Expression was ultimately published in 1872, a year after Descent.


Expression: The expression of the emotions in man and animals. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1872.


Grateful for addresses of informants, especially that of Rajah James Brooke.

Dispatch of queries on expression. Answers will make interesting appendix to his "Essay on man" [Descent].

Protective adaptation of female butterflies believed probable.

Believes in sexual selection as applied to man.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Alfred Russel Wallace
Sent from
Source of text
The British Library (Add 46434 ff. 20–20v)
Physical description
LS 2pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 5992,” accessed on 20 March 2023,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 15