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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Fritz Müller   13 February 1874

Down, | Beckenham, Kent.

Feb 13 1874.

My dear Sir

Your letter recd yesterday has interested me greatly, though I had previously read your German papers on the Termites. Your discovery of the two mature sexual forms is a most remarkable one.1

As I thought you cd not object, I have sent your letter for publication to Nature; & if published I will transmit a copy to you—2 I have also sent by today’s post another copy of my book on Expression.3 I hope that you will have recd some little time ago Mr Belt’s book, as I think it will interest you.4 I sent off yesterday £4.13s to your brother at Lippstadt.5 What you tell me about the stingless bees of Brazil, especially about their wax-secreting glands, surprises & interests me much; & if it does not cost you too much trouble I shd like very much to hear a little about yr future observations. I have been doing nothing new of late, only the dull work of correcting new eds of 2 of my books.6

My dear Sir | yours very sincerely | Charles Darwin


See letter from Fritz Müller, [c. January 1874]. CD refers to the first three parts of F. Müller 1873–5.
See letter to Nature, 11 February [1874].
Müller’s name appears on CD’s presentation list for Expression (see Correspondence vol. 20, Appendix V); he had perhaps not received his copy.
CD had sent Müller a copy of Thomas Belt’s Naturalist in Nicaragua (Belt 1874; see letter to Fritz Müller, 1 January 1874).
CD had sent Hermann Müller the money from the profits of the English translation of Fritz Müller’s Für Darwin (F. Müller 1864, Dallas trans. 1869); the letter has not been found, but see the letter from Hermann Müller, 15 February 1874. See also Correspondence vol. 21, letter to Fritz Müller, 25 September 1873.
CD refers to the second editions of Coral reefs and Descent (see ‘Journal’ (Appendix II)).


Coral reefs: The structure and distribution of coral reefs. Being the first part of the geology of the voyage of the Beagle, under the command of Capt. FitzRoy RN, during the years 1832 to 1836. By Charles Darwin. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1842.

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.

Müller, Fritz. 1873–5. Beiträge zur Kenntniss der Termiten. I. Die Geschlechtstheile der Soldaten von Calotermes. II. Die Wohnungen unserer Termiten. III. Die ‘Nymphen mit kurzen Flügelscheiden’ (Hagen), ‘nymphes de la deuxième forme’ (Lespès). Ein Sultan in seinem Harem. IV. Die Larven von Calotermes rugosus Hag. Jenaische Zeitschrift für Naturwissenschaft 7 (1871–3): 333–58, 451–63; 9 (1875): 241–64.


Has sent FM’s letter on termites to Nature ["Habits of various insects", Nature 10 (1874): 102–3].

Would be interested in observations on the stingless bees of Brazil.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Johann Friedrich Theodor (Fritz) Müller
Sent from
Source of text
British Library (Loan MS 10 no 37)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 9288,” accessed on 15 August 2020,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 22