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Darwin Correspondence Project

To J. D. Hooker   8 January [1875]1

Down, | Beckenham, Kent. | Railway Station | Orpington. S.E.R.

Jan. 8th

My dear Hooker

There can be no doubt that the men whom you have consulted are excellent judges, & that it wd be very rash of you not to follow their advice.2 Do not say that you regret having told me of your wish & intentions; for I shall always think of your & Huxleys sympathy & aid with the deepest satisfaction.—3 As you are not to write I am all the more inclined to do so, but my wife & George think (like Huxley) that I had better not, & perhaps I shall succomb. Anyhow I will write a savage letter & that will do me some good, if I do not send it!

Drosophyllum has arrived all safe, & I long to see the glands secreting.4

Oliver writes that he is going to send me the dried specimens of Genlisea & I heartily thank him & you.— He tells me of some German paper about Aldrovanda & Utricularia,— if by Cohn I have it.—5

My dear old friend | yours affecty | Ch Darwin

I do not think that there is any risk, but it frightens me to imagine the parcel of Genlisea lost on the Railway.


The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from J. D. Hooker, 7 January 1875.
John Tyndall, Thomas Archer Hirst, and Herbert Spencer had advised Hooker against writing to St George Jackson Mivart about Mivart’s anonymous attack on an article by George Howard Darwin ([Mivart] 1874, p. 70; see letter from J. D. Hooker, 7 January 1875).
Thomas Henry Huxley had written to Mivart, his former protégé; see Correspondence vol. 22, Appendix V.
Hooker had acquired a specimen of Drosophyllum lusitanicum (Portuguese sundew or dewy pine) from Edinburgh (see letter from J. D. Hooker, 3 January [1875] and n. 4).
Daniel Oliver’s letter has not been found, but see the letter to Oliver of 6 January [1875]. Genlisea (the corkscrew plant), Aldrovanda (the waterwheel plant), and Utricularia (bladderwort) are carnivorous plants. CD’s annotated proof copy of Ferdinand Julius Cohn’s paper on Aldrovanda and Utricularia (Cohn 1875a) is in DAR 58.2: 35–43. See letter to F. J. Cohn, 1 January 1875.


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

[Mivart, St George Jackson.] 1874b. Primitive man: Tylor and Lubbock. [Essay review of the works of John Lubbock and Edward Burnett Tylor.] Quarterly Review 137 (1874): 40–77.


JDH would be rash not to follow advice of his friends. [CD’s] wife and George oppose his writing to Mivart.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 95: 367–8
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 9809,” accessed on 28 July 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 23