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Darwin Correspondence Project

To J. V. Carus   25 April [1871]1

Down. | Beckenham | Kent. S.E.

Ap. 25th

My dear Sir

I am pleased to hear about the new Edit. of Vol I.—2 I have directed Mr. Murray to send you immediately by Post clean sheets of the last Reprint.—3

I am very sorry that I cannot point out corrected passages; & I must beg you to glance over all the pages. The corrections are not numerous, but a few are important.— I have been worked to death by letters & the Reprints, & this has prevented me keeping any account of corrections.—4

Very many thanks for your criticisms.— What I meant about the Neuroptera & Orthoptera, now quite distinct, I cannot conceive; I know that they were partially united by some of the best Entomologists; Pray correct sentence.—5

I do not know when my book on Expression will be published—6 I have written the first very rough copy of the whole;—but I intend to lay it on one side this summer for some months & refresh myself with some simple Botanical work, & complete some curious observations which I made some ten years ago on the extraordinary sensibility of certain plants to various stimuli.—7

I hope that you made a good bargain with the publisher, as I hope the book will sell well in Germany.— In England 6500 copies have been printed.— But the late war will no doubt interfere with sale.—8

In Haste | Yours very sincerely | Ch Darwin


The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from J. V. Carus, 22 April 1871.
CD refers to the second printing of the German translation of Descent (Carus trans. 1871); see letter from J. V. Carus, 22 April 1871 and n. 1.
CD refers to John Murray. The letter to John Murray has not been found, but see the letter from R. F. Cooke, 26 April 1871.
A third printing of Descent was made in April 1871 (Freeman 1977).
The Franco-Prussian war lasted from 19 July 1870 until 10 May 1871 (Wawro 2003). See also Correspondence vol. 18, letter to J. V. Carus, 18 August 1870.


Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 29 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.

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.

Wawro, Geoffrey. 2003. The Franco-Prussian war: the German conquest of France in 1870–1871. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Corrections for Descent. Has sold 6500 copies in England.

Has finished rough draft of Expression, but will put it aside for the summer.

Will refresh himself with some curious observations on the response of plants to certain stimuli.

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 7715,” accessed on 19 September 2023,

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