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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Chauncey Wright   6 September [1872]1

Down, | Beckenham, Kent.

Sept 6th

My dear Mr Wright

I received this morning a very big book in 2 vols. from author, “Études sur les Facultés mentales des Animaux par J. C. Houzeau—membre de l’Acad. Belgique”— (A Travelling naturalist— “Paris Hachette & Co. 1872.”—2 This would be probably worth your notice.— I hope that you will enjoy the rest of your tour.— I have been heartily glad to make your personal acquaintance—3

In Haste | Yours very sincerely | Ch. Darwin


The year is established by the reference to Wright’s meeting with CD (see n. 3, below).
The reference is to Jean-Charles Houzeau’s Études sur les facultés mentales des animaux comparées à celles de l’homme (Observations on the mental faculties of animals compared with those of man; Houzeau 1872). CD cited it extensively in Descent 2d ed..
Wright visited CD on 4 and 5 September 1872 (see Emma Darwin’s diary (DAR 242) and Thayer 1878, p. 248). He referred to his tour in his letter of 29 August 1872.


Descent 2d ed.: The descent of man, and selection in relation to sex. By Charles Darwin. 2d edition. London: John Murray. 1874.

Houzeau, Jean-Charles. 1872. Études sur les facultés mentales des animaux comparées à celles de l’homme par un voyageur naturaliste. 2 vols. Brussels: Hector Manceaux. Paris: Hachette et Cie.

Thayer, James Bradley. 1878. Letters of Chauncey Wright with some account of his life. Cambridge, Mass.: John Wilson and Son.


Recommends J. C. Houzeau’s Études sur les facultés mentales des animaux [1872].

Was glad to make CW’s acquaintance.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Chauncey Wright
Sent from
Source of text
American Philosophical Society (Mss.B.D25.)
Physical description
ALS 1p

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 8512,” accessed on 26 February 2024,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 20