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Darwin Correspondence Project

To JDHooker   31 October [1872]1

Down, | Beckenham, Kent.

Oct 31

My dear Hooker

You have been very very good & I have been very very troublesome. Unfortunately you addressed the Dionæa to Bromley, instead of Orpington & I sent to Orpington in vain for them & heard only to day that they were at Bromley.2 I sent for them at once. They look rather pale after 3 days in darkness, but I think they will recover, if we can but get some more light.

I wish I knew anything about their treatment, but we must feel our way & try slightly different methods on different plants. I doubt whether I can do all that I wish to do with them till next Spring & they can grow stronger & fully sensitive.

Please tell me what you have paid for them that I may repay you.— I shall soon kill them by my experiments in all probability.—

I thank you particularly for sending them, as I am just ready to observe some few points in their structure.—3

Ever yours | C. Darwin

I have of course told Murray to send you my expression Book, but you will not have time to read it, & do not acknowledge it.—4

Your particulars about Ayrton Owen & Co (a nice Firm) amused me much.—5


The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from J. D. Hooker, 29 October 1872.
See letter from JDHooker, 26 October 1872 and n. 2. CD’s home was three miles from the railway station at Orpington, but six miles from Bromley station.
CD refers to John Murray. Hooker’s name is on CD’s presentation list for Expression (see Correspondence vol. 20, Appendix V).


Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 29 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

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


Dionaea plants have arrived. Just ready to observe some points in their structure.

Has Murray sent Expression book?

JDH’s particulars about Owen, Ayrton and Co. ("a nice firm") amused CD much.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 94: 237–8
Physical description
ALS 4pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 8586,” accessed on 22 September 2023,

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