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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Hermann Settegast   29 September 1870

Down. | Beckenham | Kent. S.E.

Sep 29. 1870

Dear Sir

I am very much obliged for your kind letter & present of your beautiful volume. Your work is not new to me, for I heard it so highly spoken of that I procured a copy of the first edition.1 It was a great gratification to me to find a man who had long studied with a philosophical spirit our domesticated animals, & who was highly competent to judge, agreeing to a large extent with my views. I regretted much that I had not known your work when I published my last volumes.2

I am surprized & pleased to hear that science is not quite forgotten under the present exciting state of affairs. Every one whom I know in England is an enthusiastic wisher for the full & complete success of Germany—3

With my best thanks & sincere respect I remain | dear Sir | yours faithfully | 〈Charles Darwin〉4

P.S. I will give one of my two copies of your work to some public scientific library in London


The reference is to Die Thierzucht (Settegast 1868). CD’s lightly annotated copy is in the Darwin Library–Down (see Marginalia 1: 754). CD had ordered a copy in 1868 (see Correspondence vol. 16, letter from Williams & Norgate, 2 June 1868). A second edition was published in 1869.
CD refers to Variation. He cited Settegast 1868 in Variation 2d ed., 2: 331 n. 41.
CD alludes to the Franco-Prussian war.
The signature has been excised.


Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 27 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

Marginalia: Charles Darwin’s marginalia. Edited by Mario A. Di Gregorio with the assistance of Nicholas W. Gill. Vol. 1. New York and London: Garland Publishing. 1990.

Settegast, Hermann Gustav. 1868. Die Thierzucht. Breslau: Wilh. Gottl. Korn.

Variation 2d ed.: The variation of animals and plants under domestication. By Charles Darwin. 2d edition. 2 vols. London: John Murray. 1875.


Thanks HS for a copy of his book [? Die Thierzucht (1868)].

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Hermann Gustav (Hermann) Settegast
Sent from
Source of text
Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin – Preußischer Kulturbesitz (Autogr. I/101, Bl. 1–2)
Physical description
3pp damaged

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 7330,” accessed on 17 April 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 18