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Darwin Correspondence Project

From R. H. Corfield 14 — 18 July 1835

Valparaiso

July 14 1835

My dear Darwin—

The Blonde with Capt Fitzroy on board being on the point of sailing I only write a few lines merely to ask you how you are and to express a hope that you have not suffered much from the fatigues of your journey but I trust this letter will find you at Lima in good health & spirits— I am anxious to hear from you as soon as you get to Lima We are going on much as usual, though at the present moment people are busy preparing for 3 vessels now on the point of sailing for England— On this account therefore you must excuse a short letter from me, and indeed to tell you the truth, I am not much in the humour for writing letters, my mind being rather burdened with some disagreably perplexing subjects relative to business, which are rather annoying me at this present moment— However there is little in our local news, that would interest you and you will hear from Capt Fitzroy the particulars of the Ship wreck of the Challenger, as well as any other news—relative to the Navy & shipping We have had several arrivals, viz the Sparrow Hawk Brig of War frm Rio de Janeiro, and 2 vessels from Lpool, with account of another having sailed before her but not yet arrived— Accounts are down to the end of March by a Belgian Vessel 82 days from Falmouth at which port she called on her way down Channel, by her we learn that the Tories are out of office I am sorry to say. I have received some Shrewsbury papers—and thinking they may be interesting to you, I send you some by this opportunity I have not read them so cannot tell their contents,—and they will be of more interest to you than to me—my acquaintance with Shropshire people being very slight and likely to be still less so—although I should be very glad to shake hands with you there again—for I do not know when I have experienced such pleasure as I did when you were here—

In the course of a few days I expect it will be decided whether I shall be in England before you, or, in all probability never as within the last 2 days a vessel has arrived from Lpool, with a new establishment, the partner of which is empowered to make proposals of partnership to me, and if I agree to accept them, I shall I imagine be bound down by the articles, to remain out here probably 10 years—in which case I feel more disposed to select a Señorita as you call them, & remain here altogether as I think a poor devil like myself will pass a happier or at all events, quite as agreable a life as in England—as I think there is many a worse country than this I hope however such may not be the case and at present I am not much inclined to accept any terms, & if I determine not I shall make a start for England before this time next year— Whether however we ever meet again or not, I shall always consider it to have been one of the happiest periods of my life, the short time you spent with me—

Wishing you therefore health & happiness, a safe & pleasant voyage and a joyful meeting with your friends in England— | Believe me to be | My dear Darwin, | ever sincerely yours | R H Corfield

July 18

Since writing the foregoing several more vessels have arrived from Lpool, one in 91 days brings accounts of the Tory ministry being thrown out, they having been in two minorities of 33 & 27 on the Irish Tithe question, but you will hear all the best news from Capt Fitzroy I send you a few papers and one, the Morning Herald of Feby 21—containing some correspondence between a Mr Beaumont & Mr Townsend which are worth perusal1 but Alison desired me by all means to send it you, as it also contains something relative to Cuvier which will be interesting to philosophers.2 He desires to be remembered to you & if he has time will write—

I do not feel disposed to join the House I mentioned to you on the other side as I do not like them or their proceedings— So I hope yet to give you the meeting in England

Excuse this short & stupid letter, but believe me with every good wish | Yours ever | R H C

CD annotations

on cover: ‘Gillman | [Cord] | M.. Gonzales3 | Caldcleugh’

Footnotes

The Rev. George Townsend’s charge that Thomas Wentworth Beaumont, M.P. had expressed ‘atrocious revolutionary sentiments against the Conservatives’ led to an exchange of letters in The Morning Herald of Saturday, 21 February 1835, p. 3.
The reference is to the summary of a eulogy of Georges Cuvier by Marie-Jean-Pierre Flourens at the French Academy of Science (The Morning Herald, 21 February 1835, p. 3).
Mariano Gonzales, CD’s guide on his Chilean tours (‘Beagle’ diary, p. 306).

Summary

Passes on news from England and some Shrewsbury papers.

Letter details

Letter no.
DCP-LETT-280
From
Richard Henry Corfield
To
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Valparaiso
Source of text
DAR 204: 131
Physical description
4pp †

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 280,” accessed on 23 August 2019, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-280

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 1

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