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Darwin Correspondence Project

To J. D. Hooker   [8–10 September 1868]1

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

My dear Hooker

Many thanks about Mr Gower to whom I have written. I send more copies of Queries, for chance of your using them, & I thank you much for those which you have distributed. There is not, however, now very much time; but perhaps there is enough, as I am so slow at my work.2

About Pall Mall, I do not agree that the article was at all right— it struck me as monstrous (& answered on the spot by the M. Advertiser) that religion did not attack science.3 When, however, I say not at all right, I am not sure whether it wd not be wisest for scientific men quite to ignore the whole subject of religion. Goldwin Smith, who has been lunching here, coming with the Nortons (son of Prof. Norton (& friends of Asa Gray) who have taken for 4 months Keston Rectory) was strongly of opinion it was a mistake.—4 Several persons have spoken strongly to me as very much admiring your Address. For chance of your caring to see yourself in a French dress, I send a Journal (need not be returned): also with a weak article by Agassiz on G. Distribution.—5 Berkely has sent me his address, so I have had a fair excuse for writing to him.6 I differ from you, I could hardly bear to shake hands with the “Sugar of Lead”, which I never heard before; it is capital.—7 I am so very glad that you will come here with Asa Grays, as, if I am bad, he will not be dull.—8 We shall ask the Nortons to come to dinner. On Saturday Wallace & probaly Mrs. W., J. Jenner Weir, (a very good man) & Blyth & I fear not Bates are coming to stay the Sunday.9 The thought makes me rather nervous; but I shall enjoy it immensely if it does not kill me.— How I wish it were possible for you to be here.

Ever yours affecly. | C. Darwin


The date range is established by the relationship between this letter, the letter from Edward Blyth, 8 September 1868, and the letter from H. W. Bates, 10 September 1868.
See letter from J. D. Hooker, 5 September 1868 and nn. 1 and 3. CD’s letter to Abel Anthony James Gower has not been found. CD was gathering material for Expression, which was not published until 1872. For a transcription of the queries about expression, see Correspondence vol. 16, Appendix V.
CD refers to articles in the Pall Mall Gazette and Morning Advertiser commenting on Hooker’s presidential address to the British Association for the Advancement of Science; see letter to J. D. Hooker, 1 September [1868] and nn. 11 and 12, and letter from J. D. Hooker, 5 September 1868 and nn. 6–8.
For the views on religion and on Darwinism of the journalist and historian Goldwin Smith, see Phillips 2002, pp. 146–60. Susan Ridley Norton and Charles Eliot Norton of Cambridge, Massachusetts were staying in the village of Keston, two miles north-west of Down; they lunched at Down on Sunday 6 September (Emma Darwin’s diary (DAR 242)). Norton’s father was Andrews Norton, who had been Dexter Professor of sacred literature at Harvard (ANB). On the friendship of C. E. Norton and Smith, see E. Wallace 1957, pp. 32–4.
CD probably sent the 5 September 1868 issue of Revue des Cours Scientifiques; this included a translation of Hooker’s presidential address to the British Association on 19 August 1868 (Barbier trans. 1868) and an article by Louis Agassiz (Agassiz 1868).
Alfred Russel Wallace and Annie Wallace, John Jenner Weir, and Edward Blyth visited on Saturday and Sunday, 12 and 13 September (see also Emma Darwin’s diary (DAR 242)). Henry Walter Bates was unable to come (see letter from H. W. Bates, 10 September 1868).


ANB: American national biography. Edited by John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes. 24 vols. and supplement. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1999–2002.

Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 29 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

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

Phillips, Paul T. 2002. The controversialist: an intellectual life of Goldwin Smith. Westport, Connecticut, and London: Praeger.

Wallace, Elisabeth. 1957. Goldwin Smith; Victorian liberal. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.


Has written to A. J. Gower.

Sends more copies of Queries about expression.

Pall Mall Gazette article [see 6342] is monstrous to say religion did not attack science. Should scientific men ignore whole subject of religion?

Sends French journal with article on JDH and one (weak) by Agassiz on geographical distribution.

M. J. Berkeley has sent his address [Rep. BAAS 38 (1868): 83–7].

CD differs with JDH on Owen; could hardly bear to shake hands with him.

Wallaces, Blyth, Jenner Weirs are coming to stay on Sunday.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 94: 91–2
Physical description
ALS 4pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 6357,” accessed on 21 June 2024,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 16