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Darwin Correspondence Project

To R. F. Cooke   30 January [1871]1

Down, Beckenham, Kent. S.E.

Jan. 30th.

My dear Sir

Miss Cobbe has written to my wife to say that Editor of the Theological Review for April 1 has asked her to review my book and she has begged me to lend her proof-sheets of Vol. I.2 I think this Review is in your list;3 if so oblige me by sending Vol. I to her (Miss Cobbe, 26 Hereford Sq., London, S.W) and keeping mem. to send 2nd vol. as soon as ready.

In my list of Presentation copies be so good as to strike out E. Blyth (for poor fellow he has become insane) and insert instead

C. L. Langstaff, Esq.

Upper Prospect Place


Also please send me 30 copies here instead of 28, as in my list.

Yours very sincerely | Ch. Darwin

P.S. From impression which Vol. I has made on Wallace and Mr.  Mivart5 and on some who have read parts in this house, I have hopes that the book will be successful, as far as sale is concerned, about which I have had many qualms at times.


The year is established by the references to Descent, which was published on 24 February 1871 (Freeman 1977).
Frances Power Cobbe’s letter to Emma Darwin has not been found. The editor of the Theological Review was Charles Beard. Cobbe reviewed Descent in the Theological Review 8 (1871): 167–92.
Cooke had sent a list of periodicals to which review copies of Descent might be sent; CD had thought Cobbe might review Descent in the Echo (see letter to R. F. Cooke, 14 January [1871] and n. 3).
In CD’s own presentation list for Descent (see Correspondence vol. 19, Appendix IV), Edward Blyth’s name has been deleted in one column and left undeleted in another; Charles Langstaff’s name has not been added. Langstaff, a surgeon, was a friend of William Erasmus Darwin and had given CD information for Expression; see Correspondence vol. 16, letter to W. E. Darwin, 8 April [1868]. Blyth was later reinstated on Cooke’s presentation list by CD (see letter to R. F. Cooke, 10 February [1871]). In December 1870, Blyth had been convicted of assaulting a cab-driver while drunk (The Times, 14 December 1870, p. 11). See also Brandon-Jones 1995 and 2006.
CD refers to Alfred Russel Wallace and St George Jackson Mivart. See letter from St G. J. Mivart, 22 January 1871, and letter from A. R. Wallace, 27 January 1871.


Brandon-Jones, Christine. 1995. Long gone and forgotten: reassessing the life and career of Edward Blyth, zoologist. Archives of Natural History 22: 91–5.

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

Descent: The descent of man, and selection in relation to sex. By Charles Darwin. 2 vols. London: John Murray. 1871.

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

Freeman, Richard Broke. 1977. The works of Charles Darwin: an annotated bibliographical handlist. 2d edition. Folkestone, Kent: William Dawson & Sons. Hamden, Conn.: Archon Books, Shoe String Press.


Asks that review copy [of Descent] be sent to F. P. Cobbe.

Discusses mailing of presentation copies.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Robert Francis Cooke; John Murray
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 143: 277
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 7466,” accessed on 21 September 2020,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 19