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Darwin Correspondence Project

To C. E. Brown-Séquard   16 April [1862]1

Down. | Bromley. | Kent. S.E.

April 16th

My dear Sir

I have taken a very long time in thanking you for your extremely kind note of Jan.y. 13th,2 but I have been waiting in hopes of being able to tell you that the French Translation of the Origin was published.3 There has been great delay in the printing, but at last more than half is actually printed so that I suppose that in a month or two, it will appear. The Translator will have a copy sent to your Publishers, & is delighted to hear that you intend noticing it. If in your power to give it, I shd. very much like to have a copy of your Review, for I am sure that it will be very valuable to me.—4

You say in your note, “that few men are so near agreeing with me as I am”.— I cannot tell you how this has pleased me; for I look with profound interest for the judgment of such men as yourself. I have not the least doubt that I have erred most seriously on many points; but now so many (yet few) really good judges concur in the main with me, that I do not fear that some such view will ultimately prevail, notwithstanding all the abuse & ridicule so freely poured on me.— On the Continent the Reviewers have treated me more fairly than in this country; & an excellent, but too favourable, Review has lately been published by Claparéde in the Revue Germanique.—5

Pray excuse me scribbling so long a note & believe me, my dear Sir | With sincere respect | Yours very faithfully | Ch. Darwin


The year is provided by the reference to the imminent publication of the French translation of Origin (see n. 3, below).
Royer trans. 1862.
See letter to C. E. Brown-Séquard, 2 January [1862], and letter from C. E. Brown-Séquard, 13 January 1862. Brown-Séquard intended to publish a review of Origin in the Journal de la Physiologie de l’Homme et des Animaux; however, no such review appeared.
Claparède 1861. Edouard Claparède had sent CD a copy of the review (see letter to Edouard Claparède, [c. 16 April 1862]); it had in fact been published in the numbers of the Revue Germanique for August and September 1861.


Claparède, Edouard. 1861. M. Darwin et sa théorie de la formation des espèces. Revue Germanique Française & étrangère 16: 523–59; 17: 232–63.

Origin: On the origin of species by means of natural selection, or the preservation of favoured races in the struggle for life. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1859.


French translation of 3d edition of Origin has been greatly delayed.

Very pleased with CEB-S’s intent to write a review and with his near agreement. CD believes that so many really good judges concur with him in the main that his views will ultimately prevail. Continental reviews have been more positive than British ones. Édouard Claparède’s ["M. Darwin et sa théorie de la formation des espèces", Rev. Ger. 16 (1861): 523–59; 17 (1861): 232–63] is too favourable.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Charles Édouard Brown-Séquard
Sent from
Source of text
Royal College of Physicians of London (MS-BROWC/981/97)
Physical description
ALS 4pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 3508,” accessed on 15 April 2024,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 10