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List of correspondents

Summary

Below is a list of Darwin's correspondents with the number of letters for each one. Click on a name to see the letters Darwin exchanged with that correspondent.    "A child of God" (1) Abberley,…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … Below is a list of Darwin's correspondents with the number of letters for each one. …

Women’s scientific participation

Summary

Observers | Fieldwork | Experimentation | Editors and critics | Assistants Darwin’s correspondence helps bring to light a community of women who participated, often actively and routinely, in the nineteenth-century scientific community. Here is a…

Matches: 10 hits

  • … Editors and critics  |  Assistants Darwin’s correspondence helps bring to light a …
  • … - Wedgwood, L. C. to Darwin, [6 June 1864] Darwin’s niece, Lucy, responds to Darwin’s …
  • … February 1867] Mary Barber responds to Darwin’s queries about Expression from …
  • … wife of American naturalist Asa Gray, responds to Darwin’s queries about Expression …
  • … and offers to observe birds, insects or plants on Darwin’s behalf. Letter 8683 - …
  • … passes on brief observations of an angry pig and her niece’s ears. Letter 8701 - …
  • … wife of naturalist John Lubbock, responds to Darwin’s request that she make observations of her pet …
  • … Thereza Story-Maskelyne responds to a letter of Darwin’s which was published in Nature with some …
  • … of orchids made by his son, George. He details George’s findings and celebrates his son’s …
  • … Letter 4823  - Wedgwood, L. C. to Darwin, H. E., [May 1865] Darwin’s niece, Lucy, …

Darwin in letters, 1874: A turbulent year

Summary

The year 1874 was one of consolidation, reflection, and turmoil for Darwin. He spent the early months working on second editions of Coral reefs and Descent of man; the rest of the year was mostly devoted to further research on insectivorous plants. A…

Matches: 25 hits

  • over an anonymous review that attacked the work of Darwins son George dominated the second half of
  • been the naturalist and traveller Alexander von Humboldts 105th birthday, Darwin obliged with a
  • The death of a Cambridge friend, Albert Way, caused Darwins cousin, William Darwin Fox, to
  • led Darwin to the self-assessment, ‘as for ones body growing old there is no help for it, & I
  • The year started for Darwin with a weeks visit to London, staying at his brother Erasmuss house.  …
  • August 1873. Darwin had originally thought that Clarks dietary treatment woulddo wonders’, but as
  • in London, his son George organised a séance at Erasmuss house. The event was led by the medium
  • 18 January [1874] ). Later in the month, another Williams séance was held at the home of
  • report to Darwin with the spirit-busting conclusion that Mr Williams wasa cheat and an imposter’ ( …
  • to get the two men on each side of him to hold each others hands, instead of his, ‘& that he
  • first three months of the year and, like many of Darwins enterprises in the 1870s, were family
  • sweetly all the horrid bother of correction’ ( letter to H. E. Litchfield, 21 [March 1874] ). The
  • Cupples, a Scottish deerhound expert who forwarded Darwins queries about the numbers of males and
  • I have pounded the enemy into a jelly’ ( letter from T. H. Huxley, 14 April 1874 ). The technical
  • and never mind where it goes’ ( letter from T. H. Huxley, 16 April 1874 ). The second
  • price of nine shillings, in line with Charles Lyells  Students elements of geology , and with
  • conciseness & clearness of your thought’ ( letter from G. H. Darwin, 20 April 1874 ). …
  • the spread of various mental and physical disorders (G. H. Darwin 1873b). In July 1874, an anonymous
  • over thescurrilous libelon his son ( letter to G. H. Darwin, [27 July 1874] ).  George, …
  • accusation of [a] lying scoundrel’ ( letter to G. H. Darwin, 1 August [1874] ). He drafted a brief
  • with Murray on the outcome ( enclosure to letter from G. H. Darwin, 6 [August] 1874 ): …
  • to the Editor & it had been refused’ ( letter from G. H. Darwin, [6 or 7 August 1874] ). When
  • of Hookers and Huxleys representations ( letter to T. H. Huxley, 22 December [1874] ). Huxley
  • offender & give him the cold shoulder’ ( letter from T. H. Huxley, 23 December 1874 ). He
  • of exchange value, and the second elliptic integral (G. H. Darwin 1875a, 1875b, 1875d, 1875e). …

Darwin’s reading notebooks

Summary

In April 1838, Darwin began recording the titles of books he had read and the books he wished to read in Notebook C (Notebooks, pp. 319–28). In 1839, these lists were copied and continued in separate notebooks. The first of these reading notebooks (DAR 119…

Matches: 9 hits

  • … 8] 1854 Jan 15. Seeman’s Narrative of H.M.S. Herald [Seeman 1853]. Feb 6. …
  • … Philosophie Positive G Lewes [Lewes 1853] (curious) Williams Missionary in T. del Fuego …
  • … ou, iconographie de toutes les espèces et   variétés d’arbres, fruitiers cultivés dans cet   …
  • … augmentée d’un grand nombre de fruits, les uns échappés aux recherches de Duhamel, les autres …
  • … . Vol. 37 in Jardine, William, ed.,  The naturalist’s library . 40 vols. Edinburgh. 1843.  *119: …
  • … caractères   physiologiques des race humaines considérés dans leur   rapports avec l’histoire . …
  • …   Amazon, including a residence at Pará . (Murray’s Home and Colonial Library.) London.  *119: 23 …
  • … Australia, and overland from Adelaide   to King George’s Sound, in 1840–1, including an account of …
  • … *119: 23 Ferguson, George. 1854.  Ferguson’s illustrated series of rare   and prize …

The evolution of honeycomb

Summary

Honeycombs are natural engineering marvels, using the least possible amount of wax to provide the greatest amount of storage space, with the greatest possible structural stability. Darwin recognised that explaining the evolution of the honey-bee’s comb…

Matches: 18 hits

  • recognised that explaining the evolution of the honey-bees comb-building abilities was essential if
  • thought, to a governing intelligence. In Lord Broughams  Dissertations on subjects connected with
  • been given to it’ (Kirby 1852, 2: 246). Darwins copy of Broughams  Dissertations  is
  • principles and the proximity of other cells. Darwins letter has not been found, but from Waterhouse
  • made notes for their discussion in a memorandum to W. H. Miller, [15 April 1858] , summarising
  • was still exercising his mind on the subjects of wasps nests. He sent another long letter to Darwin
  • Proceedings of the Entomological Society of London  n.s. 5: 1718 is reproduced here: …
  • Darwin quickly arranged to look at Tegetmeiers piece of honeycomb (letter to W. B. Tegetmeier, …
  • constructed out of the original curved arch, since Hubers diagrams show this transition clearly. …
  • These experiments were repeated in 2009 by John Williams, a master beekeeper who maintains an
  • with vermilion wax have also been repeated by John Williams. Aknife-edgeridge of wax is
  • in the photograph below. In August 1858, Waterhouses remarks at the 5 April meeting of the
  • … ( Proceedings of the Entomological Society of London  n.s. 5 (185861): 345), the issue was
  • actual physical compression was to dog responses to Darwins own theory as well. Also in
  • secretion of 1lb of wax. Tegetmeier also confirmed Darwins conclusions about the building of cells. …
  • a theory of cell-building that differed from both Hubers and Waterhouses. Huber had believed that
  • … , Darwin explained the development of the honey-bees cell-building instinct from simpler forms (the
  • 1865 ), in which Cresy sent as an illustration of Darwins bee-cell theory a description of a plum

Alexander von Humboldt

Summary

The phases of Charles Darwin’s career have often been defined by the books that he read, from Lyell’s Principles of Geology during the Beagle voyage to Malthus’s Essay on the Principle of Population during his London years. The book that encouraged him to…

Matches: 10 hits

  • … The phases of Charles Darwin’s career have often been defined by the books that he read, from Lyell …
  • … was the Personal Narrative of Alexander von Humboldt’s travels in Central and South America …
  • … movement, and trained with Abraham Gottlob Werner, Europe’s leading practitioner of mineralogy and …
  • … of nature. When Darwin was a student at Christ’s College, Humboldt’s Personal Narrative …
  • … between Cambridge and Grantchester. So strong was Darwin’s desire to emulate Humboldt that after …
  • … autumn of 1831 prove that almost everyone in Darwin’s circle considered Humboldt the ideal role …
  • … of nature. He used the Personal Narrative and Humboldt’s writings on Asia as omnipresent sources …
  • … filled on the voyage and after suggests that Humboldt’s influence on Darwin’s thought was eclipsed …
  • … found his specimens, echoed themes so central to Humboldt’s work that a citation would have been …
  • … traveller,’ the published version of Darwin’s diary, his Journal of the voyage, was a tribute to …

Darwin in letters,1866: Survival of the fittest

Summary

The year 1866 began well for Charles Darwin, as his health, after several years of illness, was now considerably improved. In February, Darwin received a request from his publisher, John Murray, for a new edition of  Origin. Darwin got the fourth…

Matches: 15 hits

  • … a meeting with Herbert Spencer, who was visiting Darwin’s neighbour, Sir John Lubbock. In February, …
  • … edition was with the printers in July. Much to Darwin’s annoyance, however, publication was delayed …
  • … by Darwin to his publisher in December. Much of Darwin’s correspondence in 1866 was focussed on …
  • … of hereditary transmission. Debate about Darwin’s theory of transmutation continued in …
  • … of a global ice age, while Asa Gray pressed Darwin’s American publisher for a revised edition of  …
  • … the Advancement of Science. Fuller consideration of Darwin’s work was given by Hooker in an evening …
  • … illness. Diet and exercise Among Darwin’s first letters in the new year was a report …
  • … meals & these I think suit me best.’ He sought Jones’s approval to increase his intake of coffee …
  • … I enjoy much.’ The new exercise regime led to Darwin’s being teased by his neighbour, John Lubbock, …
  • … selection was based. The work relied heavily on Darwin’s extensive correspondence over several …
  • … extending over the course of the year, on some of the book’s illustrations, the production of which …
  • … of ‘gemmules’, minute particles thrown off by the body’s individual cells, and capable of generating …
  • …  had been a major task, occupying much of Darwin’s working time since the publication of Origin. …
  • … as a criterion for species. The implications of Darwin’s botanical research and that of other plant …
  • … selection as a necessary condition for proof of Darwin’s theory. Shortly after the new edition was …

Darwin in letters, 1864: Failing health

Summary

On receiving a photograph from Charles Darwin, the American botanist Asa Gray wrote on 11 July 1864: ‘the venerable beard gives the look of your having suffered, and … of having grown older’.  Because of poor health, Because of poor health, Darwin…

Matches: 23 hits

  • … to make some observations of dimorphic plants with William’s help; he also ordered a selection of …
  • … a variety of antacids and purgatives, and limited Darwin’s fluid intake; this treatment differed …
  • … also marked by the award to Darwin of the Royal Society’s Copley Medal; he had been nominated for …
  • … in Britain. Challenging convention Darwin’s concern about the acceptance of his theory …
  • … ( letter to J. D. Hooker, [8 February 1864] ). Darwin’s excitement about his observations and …
  • … in January 1865. Climbers and twiners Darwin’s paper divided plants into different …
  • … as good species as a man & a Gorilla Darwin’s interest in species, hybrids, and …
  • … of flowers ). A household enterprise Darwin’s 1864 correspondence with family members …
  • … 14, collected specimens of  Echium vulgare . Darwin’s daughter Henrietta was often at his side in …
  • … of  Pulmonaria officinalis  from her family’s home in Surrey; Darwin incorporated these into  …
  • … in 1864, however, was provided by William, Darwin’s eldest son and a banker in Southampton. Their …
  • … much pollen work as ever you like’. Comments on William’s findings, along with other household news, …
  • … Crüger, head of the botanic garden in Trinidad. Darwin’s exhilaration is apparent in his reports to …
  • … of  Catasetum pollen adhering to a humble-bee’s back, illustrating the force behind the ejection …
  • … [1864] ). Darwin was also impressed by Crüger’s discovery of the unique bucket-like labellum …
  • … the 1866 edition of  Origin . He communicated Crüger’s paper to the Linnean Society, in addition …
  • … in the year from Roland Trimen in South Africa. Darwin’s work with orchids continued to inspire the …
  • … 1877. These publications were partly inspired by Crüger’s work, and by Darwin’s continuing …
  • … the orchid  Acropera . Darwin communicated one of Scott’s papers on the orchid  Oncidium  to the …
  • … the Linnean Society (Scott 1864a); other papers of Scott’s followed, reporting the results of …
  • … the most troublesome In March, Darwin and Scott’s typically technical and detailed …
  • … of attaining a foreign appointment. Convinced of Scott’s talent and his ‘burning zeal for science’, …
  • … Darwin asked Hooker about the possibility of Scott’s conducting experiments at Kew on Darwin’s …

Books on the Beagle

Summary

The Beagle was a sort of floating library.  Find out what Darwin and his shipmates read here.

Matches: 26 hits

  • the preparations for the voyage, refers to FitzRoysimmense stock of instruments & books . . . …
  • would need, even if it meant duplicating some of FitzRoys own: ‘You are of course welcome to take
  • … . . . were collected in one cabin, under Mr. Stebbings charge, and lent to the officers, without
  • However, from the  Beagle  correspondence, CDs diary, field notebooks, and the extensive
  • are almost always in ink, usually written with CDs favourite Brahma pens. References to books in
  • examples are references to Bernardin de Saint Pierres  Paul et Virginie  and to characters in
  • to do so. For example, two references to Felix Azaras works in notes made during 1833 cite
  • have been found (DAR 42: 73) that are taken from Griffiths edition of Cuviers The animal kingdom
  • Dictionnaire  and could only have come from that authors  Exposition   méthodique  (1821). …
  • one might expect many of his references coincide with CDs. However, since FitzRoys account was
  • on board have been searched for such cases. Considering CDs normal practice of citing his sources, …
  • living on shore. It is possible, for example, that Nuñezs book was borrowed from Edward Lumb, the
  • there were probably other works about voyages in FitzRoys collection which he does not mention. …
  • … —  Down House, Downe, Kent *  —  CDs copy contains evidence of use on board the  Beagle
  • frequently cited during the voyage †  —  CDs copy annotated (†† indicates numerous
  • de géognosie , conveys the following information: CDs copy, now in Darwin LibaryCUL, was used on
  • the book on folio 61 (recto) in part 1 of volume 32 of CDs geological diary (DAR 32.1) in the
  • Narrative of a voyage to the Pacific and Beerings   Strait . . . 1825, 26, 27, 28 . London, 1831
  • …  3 (1834): 84115. (DAR 37.1: 677v.; letter to J. S. Henslow, 12 July 1835). * Boitard, …
  • naturelle . 17 vols. Paris, 182231. (Letter from J. S. Henslow, 1521 January [1833]). Darwin
  • meeting . . . Oxford, 1832 . London, 1833.  (Letter to J. S. Henslow, March 1834 and letter from J
  • Containing a faithful narrative of the loss of his Majestys ship the Wager , etc. London, 1743. …
  • … †. Byron, George Anson, 7th BaronVoyage of H.M.S. Blonde to the Sandwich Islands,   in
  • 17991804 . . . translated into English by Henrietta Maria Williams.  7 vols. London. 181429. …
  • … *  New Testament  (German). (SignedC. Darwin H.M.S. Beagle’. Copy examined by Sydney Smith  c. …
  • Atlantic Ocean, in the years 1828, 29, 30, performed in H.M. Sloop Chanticleer . . .  2 vols. …

Was Darwin an ecologist?

Summary

One of the most fascinating aspects of Charles Darwin’s correspondence is the extent to which the experiments he performed at his home in Down, in the English county of Kent, seem to prefigure modern scientific work in ecology.

Matches: 27 hits

  • One of the most fascinating aspects of Charles Darwins correspondence is the extent to which the
  • ecology. Despite the difference in language between Darwins letter and the modern scientific paper
  • far from straightforward. As we shall see, though Darwins work was pivotaland in more ways than
  • well enough established in universities that Darwinsheld together with a piece of string’ …
  • laboratory institute in Würzburg, criticised Darwins experiments on movement in root radicles as
  • organisms over timewere highly innovative. Darwins own experiments challenged the old, purely
  • texts of the ecological movement, such as Rachel Carsons Silent spring, often draw on science, …
  • roots, and a correspondingly complex history. Whats in a name? The termecologywas
  • some of his correspondents complained mildly about Haeckels propensity for making up words, but did
  • new wordsis something dreadful’, Darwin wrote to T. H. Huxley on 22 December 1866 . ‘He seems
  • The word first appeared in English in E. Ray Lankesters translation of Haeckels History of
  • in his published works or in his letters. However, Darwins Origin of species was Haeckels primary
  • science is descended from a combination of Haeckels ecology and another new science of his, …
  • doubt, a vertical dimension to the story. But theres also a horizontal dimension, the question of
  • In order to understand ecology historically, its necessary to understand something about the ideas
  • it, and what areas are still contested? Darwins intellectual context Darwin would
  • in chemical or meteorological investigations. By Darwins time the term was associated particularly
  • and an early influence on Darwin, was Gilbert Whites Natural history of Selborne. In this work, …
  • powerful motivation to suggest, commenting that Whites mind wasever open to the lessons of piety
  • to more advantage’ (ibid., p. 296). Whites viewpoint was not unusual. The existence of God
  • theology had been intimately linked. In some ways Darwins work fitted neatly into the established
  • and other naturalists, upon him. However, Darwins theory challenged some of the deepest
  • that showed evidence of vast upheavals in the earths history. Further, fossils were discovered that
  • be argued that such change was guided by God. But Darwins theory, while not commenting on the
  • that there was no pressure for change. According to Darwins theory, the natural world showed
  • Darwin. London: Longman, Green, Longman, Roberts & Green; Williams & Norgate. Darwin, …
  • …  Lectures on the physiology of plants . Translated by H. M. Ward. Oxford: Clarendon Press. …

Darwin in letters, 1863: Quarrels at home, honours abroad

Summary

At the start of 1863, Charles Darwin was actively working on the manuscript of The variation of animals and plants under domestication, anticipating with excitement the construction of a hothouse to accommodate his increasingly varied botanical experiments…

Matches: 19 hits

  • dwindled considerably. The correspondence and Darwins scientific work diminished even further when
  • from the year. These letters illustrate Darwins preoccupation with the challenges presented by the
  • Thomas Henry Huxley, the zoologist and anatomist. Lyells  Antiquity of man  and Huxleys  …
  • to J. D. Hooker of 24[–5] February [1863] . When Huxleys book described the detailed anatomical
  • I never in my life read anything grander’ ( letter to T. H. Huxley, 26 [February 1863] ). In the
  • any judgment on Species or origin of man’. Darwins concern about the popular reception of his
  • a public role in the controversies that embroiled Britains scientific circles following the
  • animals now extinct had been rapidly accumulating. Lyells argument for a greater human antiquity
  • as on evidence collected earlier in the century. Lyells  Antiquity of man  and Huxleys  …
  • half of 1863 focused attention even more closely on Darwins arguments for species change. In
  • to Charles Lyell, 6 March [1863] ). Nevertheless, Darwins regret was profound that the colleague
  • Lyell, 11 March 1863 ). The botanist Asa Gray, Darwins friend in the United States, agreed that
  • on this subject seems to get rarer & rarer’ ( letter to H. W. Bates, 18 April [1863] ), …
  • for the Natural History Review  ( see letter to H. W. Bates, 12 January [1863] ). Darwin added
  • to J. D. Hooker, [9 May 1863] , and memorandum from G. H. Darwin, [before 11 May 1863]) . …
  • the end of 1862, and published as a book in early 1863 (T. H. Huxley 1863a). Though Darwin was
  • sterility of species, when crossed’ ( letter to T. H. Huxley, 10 [January 1863] ). He reminded
  • both self-pollination and cross-pollination ( letter to P. H. Gosse, 2 June [1863] ). The
  • and Lyells  Antiquity of man  ( see letter from T. H. Huxley, 25 February 1863 , and letter
letter