skip to content

Darwin Correspondence Project

To Catherine Darwin   [16 September 1842]

[12 Upper Gower Street]


My dear Catty

Everything has gone on prosperously.— Emma seems to like the place & Doddy was in ectasies for two whole days.— Weather been very good & I have stood work perfectly. Tomorrow I go— I am very busy today.— Will you ask my Father to listen to my letter to Mr Cockell, who is the surgeon of Down.—1 He introduced himself to me.— I have been able through Mr Cresy to hear good character of him from a Physician, who formerly saw much of him— I do not like his manners, but upon deliberation we have determined it will be best employ him.—2 He is only two fields off.— I do not much like my own letter & should be much obliged for any suggestions, when it is returned.— Emma suggested my putting in about increased terms, afraid he should he think my plan was only for œconomy.—

Our address is simply “Down Kent”.

Mr Blunt’s bill is come & is only £8 ’ 13 ’ 11!!!— I have written to thank him.— Will my Father be so kind as to add this to other items & I will ask for no more?— I think I shall get through (thanks to you) pretty well.— I forget whether I told my Father I gave 1£ to Mark.— he did not require any other money.— I paid expences to Down with an additional trifle for him.—

I ought to have said that Mr Cockell introduced himself to me, so I begin

Dear Sir.—

Can you let me know sometime when Mr Haycock is likely to go to town; as he has offered, to speak to Mr Cresy about remuneration for his trouble.—

I have not had time to call on Mr Hine,3 but have written apologies for not having done so— I shall see him when the deeds are conveyed.—

I think I have been very lucky in my horse & carriage: the whole has cost about 100 guineas.—

I long for tomorrow. I feel sure I shall become deeply attached to Down, with a few improvements— It will be very difficult not to be very extravagant there— I hope Susan will be able to arrange her visit. My Father will better feel, as if he had seen it.

Goodbye. Excuse this dull business, too like all my late ones.

C. D.

Mr. Blunt has sent me a classified list of my medicines, I should be very much obliged if it would not be giving too much trouble to my Father, if either of you wd sometime read it over to him & in that case I wd send it, & with pen write opposite each ordinary dose for child of 18 months old, so that we might give little less or more according to child’s age.— Is there any ordinary rule of proportion in doses between an 18 months old child & a grown up person?—


Edgar Cockell, surgeon and apothecary of Down c. 1840–55.
According to CD’s Account Book (Down House MS) Edgar Cockell was in attendance at Emma’s confinement and was paid £5 5s.
Possibly Marshall H. Hine. However, despite the entry in the Clergy list 1842, the curate of Beckenham was Marshall Hall Vine; Mr Hine may have been William Hine, a London solicitor.


Clergy list: The clergy list … containing an alphabetical list of the clergy. London: C. Cox [and others]. 1841–89.


Emma and Doddy [W. E. Darwin] like Down. CD has met, and plans to employ, the local surgeon. "I feel sure I shall become deeply attached to Down, with a few improvements".

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Emily Catherine (Catherine) Darwin/Emily Catherine (Catherine) Langton
Sent from
London, Upper Gower St, 12
Source of text
DAR 153: 6 (EH 88202298)
Physical description
ALS 4pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 633,” accessed on 7 June 2023,

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