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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Asa Gray   5 February [1871]1

Down. | Beckenham | Kent. S.E.

Feb. 5th

My dear Gray

It is a shame to trouble so hard-worked a man; but if you can, (which is doubtful) will you send the enclosed to any one who has charge of Laura Bridgeman, & beg for an answer, with any details, to the one query viz nor 13.— I shd very much like to know how this is. I have been reading Lieber’s paper, & I see he states that L.B. when astonished, raises both hands with fingers apart, & open palms directed towards the person causing astonishment. This has led me to enquire about the gesture of impotence, ie shrugging the shoulders with its accessories.—2

I have finished my book on the “Descent of man &c”, & its publication is delayed only by the Index: when published, I will send you a copy, but I do not know that you will care about it. Parts, as on on the moral sense, will I daresay aggravate you; & if I hear from you, I shall probably receive a few stabs from your polished stiletto of a pen.—3 Pray give my kindest remembrances to Mrs. Gray: I am now at work on my essay on Expression, & I have found her few notes of great use.4

Yours most truly | Ch. Darwin


Sends questions on expressions of Laura Bridgman.

Has finished Descent. Believes that parts, like that on moral sense, will aggravate AG.

Working on an essay on expression.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Asa Gray
Sent from
Source of text
Gray Herbarium of Harvard University (86)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 7476,” accessed on 22 June 2018,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 19