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Darwin Correspondence Project

To William Ogle   17 December [1870]

Down | Beckenham | Kent S.E.

Dec. 17th

My dear Dr. Ogle

Absence from home has prevented me from thanking you before for your last to me very valuable letter. I think I need not trouble myself much more about the Platysma.1 If you shd. ever see any one suffering great fear & can remember the point do look at the neck.— I will enquire what muscle my informant named when he spoke about the longitudinal furrows.2 I think Duchenne always speaks of transverse furrows.—3

I have just been in London for 6 days for some rest, & intended calling on you; but days so short, & not much strength for what I was forced to do, that I failed. I shall be up again in some 6 weeks or 2 months, & much hope then to see you.—4 If at any time you write again, please tell me whether I may call early & how early—

With very sincere thanks | Yours truly | C. Darwin


CD stayed at his brother Erasmus Alvey Darwin’s house in London from 8 to 14 December 1870 (CD’s ‘Journal’ (Appendix II)). Ogle’s letter has not been found, but evidently related to their discussions of the platysma myoides in November; see letters to William Ogle, 9 November 1870 and 17 November [1870], and letter from William Ogle, [10–17 November 1870]. See Expression, pp. 298–303.
CD refers to Guillaume Benjamim Amand Duchenne and Duchenne 1862.
CD was next in London from 23 February to 2 March 1871 (CD’s ‘Journal’ (Correspondence vol. 19, Appendix II)). CD and Ogle evidently did meet then; see Correspondence vol. 19, letter to William Ogle, 7 March [1871].


Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 28 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

Duchenne, Guillaume Benjamin Amand. 1862. Mécanisme de la physionomie humaine, ou analyse électro-physiologique de l’expression des passions. 1 vol. and ‘Atlas’ of plates. Paris: Ve Jules Renouard, Libraire.

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


Thanks WO for valuable letter. Feels he need not trouble any more about platysma. If WO ever sees someone suffering great fear, CD asks him to observe the neck.

Hopes to visit WO when next in London.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
William Ogle
Sent from
DE 17 70
Source of text
DAR 261.5: 5 (EH 88205903)
Physical description
ALS 3pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 7394,” accessed on 17 May 2022,

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