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Darwin in letters, 1858-1859: Origin

Summary

The years 1858 and 1859 were, without doubt, the most momentous of Darwin’s life. From a quiet rural existence filled with steady work on his ‘big book’ on species, he was jolted into action by the arrival of an unexpected letter from Alfred Russel Wallace…

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  • 1858 and 1859 were, without doubt, the most momentous of Darwins life. From a quiet rural existence
  • he was jolted into action by the arrival of an unexpected letter from Alfred Russel Wallace. This
  • the composition and publication, in November 1859, of Darwins major treatise  On the origin of
  • …  exceeded my wildest hopes By the end of 1859, Darwins work was being discussed in
  • has  infinitely  exceeded my wildest hopes.—’ ( letter to Charles Lyell, 25 [November 1859] ). …
  • The 'big book' The year 1858 opened with Darwin hard at work preparing hisbig
  • his ninth chapter, on hybridism, on 29 December 1857, Darwin began in January 1858 to prepare the
  • appropriate. The correspondence shows that at any one time Darwin was engaged in a number of
  • The chapter on instinct posed a number of problems for Darwin. ‘I find my chapter on Instinct very
  • celebrated as a classic example of divine design in nature. Darwin hypothesised that the instinct of
  • of construction as it took place in the hive. As with Darwins study of poultry and pigeons, …
  • founder and president of the Apiarian Society, provided Darwin with information and specimens. His
  • For assistance with mathematical measurements and geometry, Darwin called upon William Hallowes
  • from the  Beagle voyage; on his brother, Erasmus Alvey Darwin; and his son William. Even his
  • as evidence for what actually occurred in nature ( see letter to Asa Gray, 4 April [1858] , and  …
  • throwing away what you have seen,’ he told Hooker in his letter of 8 [June 1858] , ‘yet I have
  • his work was interrupted by the arrival of the now-famous letter from Alfred Russel Wallace, …
  • selection. Darwins shock and dismay is evident in the letter he subsequently wrote to Charles Lyell
  • letter as having been receivedtoday’. Following Francis DarwinLL 2: 11617) and relying on
  • D. Hooker, 6 May 1859 ). Among the older scientists, only Leonard Horner gave his unqualified
  • illhealth revived as first Henrietta and then Elizabeth and Leonard suffered similar symptoms. With
  • of one of his own youthful captures, he sent off to the  Entomologist’s Weekly Intelligencer  a