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Darwin Correspondence Project

To W. D. Fox   [8 October 1830]

Christ College [Cambridge]

Friday Evening

My dear Fox

When I received your last letter our house was full of company, & we had somebody there every day till I left home, and I always feel it quite hopeless to think of writing a letter if the house is not quite quiet.— We were all very glad to hear so good an account of Mrs. Fox.—& I most sincerely hope she continues daily to gain strength.—

I arrived here in my most snug & comfortable rooms yesterday evening, after having had a most comfortless journey up here.— I left Shrewsbury on Tuesday & slept at Daventry, where I overtook my horse & rode him myself the two last days journey. The poor beast was so tired that he hardly knew whether he stood on his heels or his head.—& it will be some time before I undertake to ride a young horse a long journey again.— It will be very pleasant having horse up here. Moreover I think he will make a splendid hunter, from a specimen I had of him with Eytons hounds.—

There is not an individual up whom I know, & therefore I have had plenty of time to regret your absence.— How I wish you had been able to have stayed up here. we should have suited so well, each of us reading all morning & being idle all evening.— But it is not only when I am solitary that I regret your absence. Many many times do I think of our cozy breakfasts & even wish for you to give me a good scolding for swearing, & being out of temper or any other of my hundred faults— But is no use regretting; what cannot be altered.—

I have not seen Prof Henslow, but am going to a Party there to night; you have not told me half enough what you think about Mrs. Henslow She is a devilish odd woman. I am always frightened whenever I speak to her, & yet I cannot help liking her.— I suppose you cannot at all tell me what your plans are, & whether there is any hope of your coming up to Cambridge.— but that of course entirely depends on your Mothers health; I trust you will write soon & tell me how she is going on as it is sometime since I last heard.—

This is a very stupid letter, but I will try not to write many such | & Believe me dear Fox | yrs. sincerely. C. D—


All at Shrewsbury glad to hear good news of Mrs Fox.

CD left Tuesday by coach and two days’ horseback ride to Cambridge. Goes to the Henslows’ that night.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
William Darwin Fox
Sent from
Christ’s College, Cambridge
OC 8 1830
Source of text
Christ’s College Library, Cambridge (MS 53 Fox 33)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 86,” accessed on 18 September 2021,

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