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Darwin Correspondence Project

From Robert Monsey Rolfe, Lord Cranworth   28 November 1862

Holwood | Bromley

28 Novr 1862.

My dear Mr Darwin

At this time of the year I become your debtor as my Almoner for the parish of Downe—1 I therefore enclose a cheque of which you will perhaps at your leisure acknowledge the receipt—

I was pleased to hear from Lady Cranworth a short time ago that she had seen & conversed with you & that you appeared very well—2

I hope that Mrs Darwin is now well, though I believe she was not so when Lady C. called—3

Believe me | yours very truly | Cranworth


Almoner: ‘An official distributor of the alms of another’ (OED). CD was treasurer of the Down Friendly Club and the Down Coal and Clothing Club (Freeman 1978); in addition, he apparently distributed Cranworth’s annual subscriptions to a day school and a Sunday school in Down (see Correspondence vol. 7, letter to John Lubbock, 14 December [1859]). CD’s Account book–cash account (Down House MS) records a payment of £10 10s. on 30 November 1862 under the heading ‘Ld Cranworth Subscription for several Down Charities’; the receipt of Cranworth’s cheque is recorded in CD’s Account book–banking account (Down House MS) on 3 December 1862. The Down Coal and Clothing Club account book (Down House MS) records a payment of £2 2s. from Lord Cranworth on 29 November 1862.
Laura Rolfe, Lady Cranworth. In a letter to William Erasmus Darwin of [13 November 1862] (DAR 219.1: 66), Emma Darwin wrote: ‘They had a visit from Lady Cran[worth]. when I was away & a little flirtation with her always pleases your father’; according to her diary (DAR 242), Emma was in London from 8 to 12 November.
Emma Darwin’s diary (DAR 242) records that she had been ‘feverish’ with a ‘bad cold’ at the end of October.


Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 27 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

Freeman, Richard Broke. 1978. Charles Darwin: a companion. Folkestone, Kent: William Dawson & Sons. Hamden, Conn.: Archon Books, Shoe String Press.

OED: The Oxford English dictionary. Being a corrected re-issue with an introduction, supplement and bibliography of a new English dictionary. Edited by James A. H. Murray, et al. 12 vols. and supplement. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 1970. A supplement to the Oxford English dictionary. 4 vols. Edited by R. W. Burchfield. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 1972–86. The Oxford English dictionary. 2d edition. 20 vols. Prepared by J. A. Simpson and E. S. C. Weiner. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 1989. Oxford English dictionary additional series. 3 vols. Edited by John Simpson et al. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 1993–7.


Sends cheque to CD for Down parish charities.

Letter details

Letter no.
Robert Monsey Rolfe, 1st Baron Cranworth of Cranworth
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Holwood, Bromley
Source of text
DAR 161: 229
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 3833,” accessed on 5 April 2020,

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