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Darwin Correspondence Project

To T. H. Huxley   12 March [1869]1

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

Mar 12.

My dear Huxley

I read Lushington’s letter in a rather hurried manner, as if it had been a printed essay & not addressed to you; & I suppose in consequence of this the offensive passages did not strike me.2 Now that they are pointed out I fully agree that he had no right to address them to you; & this I have now told him.3 Assuredly if I had noticed these passages I shd have refused to be the channel of communication. I suspect when Mr Lushington urges you to read Comte4 he meant to express to study & digest his works. Red-hot disciples do not weigh their words when their master is attacked, & on this plea I hope you will make some allowance. I feel sure that I need not tell you that you are about the last man in England towards whom I wd consciously offer myself as a channel of offence.

This note requires no answer.

ever yours most truly | Charles Darwin


The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from T. H. Huxley, 11 March 1869.


Apologises for passing on what he agrees were offensive remarks in V. Lushington’s letter. Has told VL he had no right to make them. Asks THH to make allowance for red-hot disciples defending the master.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Thomas Henry Huxley
Sent from
Source of text
Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine Archives (Huxley 5: 264)
Physical description
LS 3pp & ADraftS 2pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 6658,” accessed on 18 May 2024,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 17