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Darwin Correspondence Project
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To John Murray   17 November [1856–7]

Summary

Asks JM for four copies of his Journal of researches [2d ed.] at wholesale price. Also asks for total number of copies sold.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Murray
Date:  17 Nov [1856-7]
Classmark:  National Library of Scotland (John Murray Archive) (Ms.42153 ff.62–63)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1026

From John Higgins   17 November 1856

Summary

Mr Hardy, CD’s tenant at Beesby, has spent £105 on improvements to the farm. JH suggests different ways of recompensing the tenant, and asks for CD’s decision.

Author:  John Higgins
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  17 Nov 1856
Classmark:  Lincolnshire Archives (HIG/4/2/1/98)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1026F

To John Murray   20 November [1856–7]

Summary

Thanks for gift [of books requested in 1026]. Sale is a good deal more than he had anticipated.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Murray
Date:  20 Nov [1856-7]
Classmark:  National Library of Scotland (John Murray Archive) (Ms.42153 ff.54–55)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1028

From George Bentham   2 December [1856]

Summary

Cites cases of leguminous plants whose cleistogamic flowers produce more seed than perfect flowers. [See Forms of flowers, p. 326.]

Author:  George Bentham
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  2 Dec [1856]
Classmark:  DAR 111: A75–6
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-11267

From W. D. Fox   19 December [1856]

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Summary

Informs CD that in his experience with peas he has never found the seed to deteriorate.

Author:  William Darwin Fox
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  19 Dec [1856]
Classmark:  DAR 77: 170
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-11799

To Albany Hancock   25 May [1856]

Summary

Wants accurate information on "the economy of nature". Is interested in how far the struggle with other species checks the northern range of any species.

Thanks John Storey for information.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Albany Hancock
Date:  25 May [1856]
Classmark:  J. Hancock 1886, pp. 277–8
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1332

To R. H. Bakewell   30 April [1856–68]

Summary

Thanks for case of inherited malconformation.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Robert Hall Bakewell
Date:  30 Apr [1856-68]
Classmark:  Christie’s (dealers) (4 June 2008)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-13770F

To E. W. V. Harcourt   19 August [1856]

Summary

Asks to borrow C. L. Brehm’s book [Handbuch der Naturgeschichte aller Vögel Deutschlands (1831)]. Wants to see how far Brehm went in splitting species.

Took finches from Madeira to British Museum.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Edward William Vernon Harcourt
Date:  19 Aug [1856]
Classmark:  Houghton Library, Harvard University (Autograph File, D)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1451

To C. J. F. Bunbury   [before 9 May 1856]

Summary

Adds comments to a list of Cape of Good Hope plants which are also European and gives some additions to the list [see Natural selection, p. 552].

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Charles James Fox Bunbury, 8th baronet
Date:  [before 9 May 1856]
Classmark:  DAR 73: 159
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1617

To John Lubbock   [29 July 1856]

Summary

Regrets he cannot help JL; the point [unspecified] was always a trouble to CD also.

Has been to a poultry show.

Asks for the return of a lens.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Lubbock, 4th baronet and 1st Baron Avebury
Date:  [29 July 1856]
Classmark:  DAR 263: 13 (EH 88206462)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1620

From J. D. Hooker   [16 November 1856]

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Summary

JDH not happy with CD’s explanation of the absence of north temperate forms in the Southern Hemisphere, given his explanation for the spread of sub-arctic forms to the south. [CD’s note is in response to JDH’s criticism.]

Author:  Joseph Dalton Hooker
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  [16 Nov 1856]
Classmark:  DAR 100: 162–3
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1622

From George Gulliver   20 January [1856]

Summary

Discusses the similarity in size, shape, and structure of the blood corpuscles of the Aves. Notes differences between the corpuscles of the domestic dog and some wild species.

Author:  George Gulliver
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  20 Jan [1856]
Classmark:  DAR (CD library – Gulliver, George 1846)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1632

From W. D. Fox   8 March [1856]

Summary

Is trying to procure some cocks for CD.

Believes Scotch deerhounds are mongrels.

Author:  William Darwin Fox
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  8 Mar [1856]
Classmark:  DAR 164: 174
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1646

To W. B. D. Mantell   10 April [1856]

Summary

Thanks WBDM for his reply [missing] to CD’s previous letter [1603].

Asks for more details on the erratic blocks.

Asks also if there is good evidence that there formerly existed [in New Zealand] some animal with hair, like an otter or beaver.

Finally, do the uncivilised natives have the same ideal of [human] beauty as Europeans?

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Walter Baldock Durrant Mantell
Date:  10 Apr [1856]
Classmark:  Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand (MS-Papers-0083-268)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1663

To William Erasmus Darwin   [26 February 1856]

Summary

Writes of WED’s progress at school and events at home.

Discusses pigeons, with which he is "getting on splendidly".

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  William Erasmus Darwin
Date:  [26 Feb 1856]
Classmark:  DAR 210.6: 8
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1804

From Thomas Vernon   Wollaston [February 1856]

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Summary

Sends Madeira specimens, including frogs recently introduced into the island, and flourishing.

Author:  Thomas Vernon Wollaston
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  [Feb 1856]
Classmark:  DAR 205.3: 299
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1806

From S. P. Woodward   [after 4 June 1856]

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Summary

Note on cases of representative shells that are not clearly either varieties or species.

Author:  Samuel Pickworth Woodward
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  [after 4 June 1856]
Classmark:  DAR 205.9: 403
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1807

To Frances Mackintosh Wedgwood   18 [August 1856 – January 1858]

Summary

Is flattered by a proposal that he undertake some reviewing work, but has many years’ work in prospect on his present book on species and varieties.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Frances Emma Elizabeth (Fanny) Wedgwood
Date:  18 [Aug 1856 - Jan 1858]
Classmark:  DAR 148: 303
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1810

To William Bernhard Tegetmeier   1 January [1856]

Summary

Will attend the Philoperisteron [pigeon fanciers’ club] if he possibly can.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  William Bernhard Tegetmeier
Date:  1 Jan [1856]
Classmark:  Archives of the New York Botanical Garden (Charles Finney Cox Collection)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1813

To John Maurice Herbert   2 January [1856]

Summary

Thanks JMH for book of poems.

Recalls early days together. He cannot visit due to health.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Maurice Herbert
Date:  2 Jan [1856]
Classmark:  American Philosophical Society (Mss.B.D25.121)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1814
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Darwin in letters, 1856-1857: the 'Big Book'

Summary

In May 1856, Darwin began writing up his 'species sketch’ in earnest. During this period, his working life was completely dominated by the preparation of his 'Big Book', which was to be called Natural selection. Using letters are the main…

Matches: 24 hits

  • … On 14 May 1856, Charles Darwin recorded in his journal that he ‘Began by Lyell’s …
  • … Charles Lyell and Joseph Dalton Hooker, who were joined in 1856 by Hooker’s friend the American …
  • … only source of information about his preoccupations during 1856 and 1857. They reveal little noticed …
  • … an illustration of how selection might work in nature ( letter from Charles Lyell, 1–2 May 1856, n. …
  • … the real structure of varieties’, he remarked to Hooker ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 8 September [1856
  • … ‘& I mean to make my Book as perfect as ever I can.’ ( letter to W. D. Fox, 8 February [1857] …
  • … on plants. Expanding projects set up during 1855 and 1856 (see  Correspondence  vol. 5), he tried …
  • … first two chapters of his species book, completed by October 1856 (‘Journal’; Appendix II). …
  • … plants, he asked Asa Gray, vary in the United States ( letter to Asa Gray, 2 May 1856 )? What …
  • … plants pretty effectually’ complained Darwin in 1857 ( letter to J. D. Hooker, [2 May 1857] ). …
  • … John Lubbock that his method of calculation was wrong ( letter to John Lubbock, 14 July [1857] ). …
  • … ‘Darwin, an absolute & eternal hermaphrodite’ ( letter to to T. H. Huxley, 1 July [1856] ), …
  • … that Asa Gray and Hooker confirmed during the course of 1856. Science at home: the botanical …
  • … many different experiments on plants through the summers of 1856 and 1857, particularly with garden …
  • … which the bird had naturally eaten have grown well.’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 10 December [1856] …
  • … trees (see letters to William Erasmus Darwin, [26 February 1856] and to Charles Lyell, 3 May …
  • … Waring Darwin, the sixth and last, was born on 6 December 1856) was a constant worry, particularly …
  • … he wrote to Syms Covington in New South Wales ( letter to Syms Covington, 9 March 1856 ). …
  • … his work on species and the preparation of his manuscript ( letter to A. R. Wallace, 1 May 1857 ) …
  • … a preliminary sketch was apparently first made in a letter written by Lyell from London on 1–2 May …
  • … and went up to London to see Lyell to discuss it further ( letter to Charles Lyell, 3 May [1856] ) …
  • … Hearing about the party afterwards, Lyell reported in a letter to his brother-in-law that, ‘When …
  • … so far, and not embrace the whole Lamarckian doctrine.’ ( letter from Charles Lyell, 1–2 May 1856, …
  • … in his views to explain them in explicit detail in a long letter to Asa Gray ( letter to Asa Gray, …

Darwin and Fatherhood

Summary

Charles Darwin married Emma Wedgwood in 1839 and over the next seventeen years the couple had ten children. It is often assumed that Darwin was an exceptional Victorian father. But how extraordinary was he? The Correspondence Project allows an unusually…

Matches: 5 hits

  • … were built to the area (Darwin to J. D. Hooker,  8 April [1856] ). This meant that most of the …
  • … family duties (Darwin to W. B. Tegetmeier,  19 November [1856] ) made him unable to travel to many …
  • … were favourite family games, and in 1859 he ended a letter to his oldest son with the exclamation ‘I …
  • … (Darwin to his son William,  [30 October 1858] ). In one letter in 1856, he explained his paternal …
  • … in this world.’ (Darwin to Syms Covington,  9 March 1856 ) In the late nineteenth century, …

Dramatisation script

Summary

Re: Design – Adaptation of the Correspondence of Charles Darwin, Asa Gray and others… by Craig Baxter – as performed 25 March 2007

Matches: 17 hits

  • … his University) and is much less his own man. A letter from England catches his attention …
  • … 11   My dear Hooker… What a remarkably nice and kind letter Dr A. Gray has sent me in answer to my …
  • … be of any the least use to you? If so I would copy it… His letter does strike me as most uncommonly …
  • … on the geographical distribution of the US plants; and if my letter caused you to do this some year …
  • … a brace of letters 25   I send enclosed [a letter for you from Asa Gray], received …
  • … might like to see it; please be sure [to] return it. If your letter is Botanical and has nothing …
  • … Atlantic. HOOKER:   28   Thanks for your letter and its enclosure from A. Gray which …
  • … notions of natural Selection and would see whether it or my letter bears any date, I should be very …
  • … 55   My good dear friend, forgive me. This is a trumpery letter influenced by trumpery feelings. …
  • … do a good deal to secure it. Darwin passes Gray’s letter to Hooker with a cringe. …
  • … full relief from all anxiety. Darwin shows Gray’s letter to Hooker. DARWIN:  …
  • … back. JANE GRAY:   189   [Jane Gray. Letter to her sister. Fall, 1868.] Mr Darwin …
  • … DARWIN:   192   My dear Gray. When I look over your letter[s] … and see all the things you …
  • … me, and yet was most anxious till two days ago, when I got a letter from him in excellent spirits. …
  • … 21 JULY 1855 14  C DARWIN TO A GRAY, 14 JULY 1856 15  A GRAY TO C DARWIN …
  • … 1855 23  JD HOOKER TO C DARWIN, 9 NOVEMBER 1856 24  C DARWIN TO JD …
  • … TO GRAY AT THIS TIME 189 JANE LORING GRAY, LETTER TO HER SISTER, 1868 or 1869 …

Origin

Summary

Darwin’s most famous work, Origin, had an inauspicious beginning. It grew out of his wish to establish priority for the species theory he had spent over twenty years researching. Darwin never intended to write Origin, and had resisted suggestions in 1856…

Matches: 5 hits

  • … to write Origin, and had resisted suggestions in 1856 that he publish a short version of his …
  • … in persuading Darwin not to publish an abstract in 1856 , Darwin explained to whole affair to him …
  • … make a large-sized pamphlet. ’ On the 4 October, in a letter to T. C. Eyton explaining his change …
  • … buoyed up in January 1859, when he received a (now lost) letter from Wallace, expressing …
  • … his friend George Frederick Pollock. The former, in a long letter to Murray, believed that Darwin …

Six things Darwin never said – and one he did

Summary

Spot the fakes! Darwin is often quoted – and as often misquoted. Here are some sayings regularly attributed to Darwin that never flowed from his pen.

Matches: 1 hits

  • … Spot the fakes! Darwin is often quoted – and as often misquoted. Here are some sayings regularly …

Dates of composition of Darwin's manuscript on species

Summary

Many of the dates of letters in 1856 and 1857 were based on or confirmed by reference to Darwin’s manuscript on species (DAR 8--15.1, inclusive; transcribed and published as Natural selection). This manuscript, begun in May 1856, was nearly completed by…

Matches: 5 hits

  • … Many of the dates of letters in 1856 and 1857 were based on or confirmed by reference to Darwin’s …
  • … as Natural selection ). This manuscript, begun in May 1856, was nearly completed by June 1858. At …
  • … 2 13 October 1856 [Variation under domestication] [2] …
  • … 11 13 October 1856 Geographical distribution (DAR 14; …
  • … 3 16 December 1856 On the possibility of all organic …

Women’s scientific participation

Summary

Observers | Fieldwork | Experimentation | Editors and critics | Assistants Darwin’s correspondence helps bring to light a community of women who participated, often actively and routinely, in the nineteenth-century scientific community. Here is a…

Matches: 30 hits

  • … Observers Women: Letter 1194 - Darwin to Whitby, M. A. T., [12 August …
  • … silkworm breeds, or peculiarities in inheritance. Letter 3787 - Darwin, H. E. to …
  • … observations of cats’ instinctive behaviour. Letter 4258 - Becker, L. E. to Darwin, …
  • … to artificially fertilise plants in her garden. Letter 4523 - Wedgwood, L. C. to …
  • … be made on seeds of Pulmonaria officinalis . Letter 5745 - Barber, M. E. to …
  • … Expression from her home in South Africa. Letter 6736 - Gray, A. & J. L …
  • … Expression during a trip to Egypt. Letter 7223 - Darwin to Wedgwood, L. C., …
  • … expression of emotion in her pet dog and birds. Letter 5817 - Darwin to Huxley, T. …
  • … is making similar observations for him. Letter 6535 - Vaughan Williams , M. S. …
  • … of a crying baby to Darwin's daughter, Henrietta. Letter 7179 - Wedgwood, …
  • … briefly on her ongoing observations of wormholes. Letter 8611 - Cupples, A. J. …
  • … expression of emotion in dogs with Emma Darwin. Letter 8676 - Treat, M. to Darwin, …
  • … birds, insects or plants on Darwin’s behalf. Letter 8683 - Roberts, D. to …
  • … of an angry pig and her niece’s ears. Letter 8701 - Lubbock, E. F . to Darwin, …
  • … that she make observations of her pet cats. Letter 8989 - Treat, M. to Darwin, [28 …
  • … on her experiments with fly-catching Drosera . Letter 9426 - Story …
  • … without the birds attacking the buds and flowers. Letter 9616 - Marshall, T. to …
  • … and her father of plants and insects. Men: Letter 2221 - Blyth, E. to Darwin …
  • … specimens and bird observations from Calcutta. Letter 3634 - Darwin to Gray, A., [1 …
  • … “enthusiasm and indomitable patience”. Letter 4242 - Hildebrand, F. H. G. to Darwin …
  • … contained in “a little treatise”. Letter 4436 - Darwin to Hooker, J. D., [26-27 …
  • … he has moved one or two of them into his bedroom. Letter 5602 - Sutton, S. to …
  • … expression of emotion in chimpanzees and orangs. Letter 5705 - Haast, J. F. J. von …
  • … to show in his museum in Canterbury, New Zealand. Letter 6453 - Langton, E. to …
  • … to be attracted to dark spots on the wallpaper. Letter 5756 - Langton, E. & C. …
  • … the black letters in a marble tablet”. Letter 6815 - Scott, J. to Darwin, [2 July …
  • … Fieldwork Women: Letter 1701 - Morris, M. H. to Prior, R. C. A., [17 June …
  • … on the shores of mountain lakes in Pennsylvania. Letter 3681  - Wedgwood, M. S. to …
  • Letter 1836  - Berkeley, M. J. to Darwin, [7 March 1856] Clergyman and botanist …
  • Letter 1836  - Berkeley, M. J. to Darwin, [7 March 1856] Clergyman and botanist Miles …

Descent

Summary

There are more than five hundred letters associated with the research and writing of Darwin’s book, Descent of man and selection in relation to sex (Descent). They trace not only the tortuous route to eventual publication, but the development of Darwin’s…

Matches: 2 hits

  • … research notes, including letters going back to at least 1856 . Among them were accounts of …
  • … to us should so much resemble one ’. Darwin saved the letter to show Henrietta . *** ‘ …

Darwin’s reading notebooks

Summary

In April 1838, Darwin began recording the titles of books he had read and the books he wished to read in Notebook C (Notebooks, pp. 319–28). In 1839, these lists were copied and continued in separate notebooks. The first of these reading notebooks (DAR 119…

Matches: 28 hits

  • … [Reimarius 1760] The Highlands & Western Isl ds  letter to Sir W Scott [MacCulloch 1824 …
  • … 1834–40]: In Portfolio of “abstracts” 34  —letter from Skuckard of books on Silk Worm …
  • … M rs  Fry’s Life [Fry 1847] Horace Walpoles letter to C t . of Ossory [Walpole 1848] …
  • … Asiatic Society ]—contains very little Macleay’s letter to D r  Fleming [Macleay 1830] …
  • … [DAR *128: 160] Mansfield’s Paraguay [Mansfield 1856] } read Chesterton Prison Life …
  • … Hutchison Dog Breaking 3 d . Edit [Hutchinson 1856] new information on Pointer & Retriever …
  • … Annal des Sc. Nat. 4 th  Series. Bot. Vol 6 [Naudin 1856]. Read Notes to Jardine & …
  • … [Heer 1854].— Hooker has it.— Very important Hookers letter Jan. 1859 Yules Ava [Yule 1858] …
  • … 1855 Sept. Tegetmeier on Poultry [Tegetmeier 1856–7] —— 27 th . Mem. de l’Acad. …
  • … Das Ganze der Landwirttschaft [Kirchhof 1835].— 1856. Jan 10 th  G. Colin Traite de …
  • … [Rudolphi 1812] [DAR 128: 16] 1856 Jan 21. Huc’s Chinese Empire [Huc …
  • … Mar 1 Veith Naturgeschichte Haussaugethiere [Veith 1856].— 3 d  Knox Races of Man.— 1850 [R …
  • … 1741–55] d[itt]o [DAR 128: 17] 1856 . Jan 28. Watt’s Life by Muirhead …
  • … [Pepys 1848–9]— April 21 Sandwitt Kars [Sandwith 1856]. [DAR 128: 18] March …
  • … 1851–6] —— Wollaston on Variation [Wollaston 1856] F. Smith on Apidæ [F. Smith 1855] …
  • … 1835 [H. C. Watson 1835] [DAR 128: 20] 1856 June 26. Davis J. Barnard. …
  • … 1855] —— 19 Von Tschudi Alpine life [Tschudi 1856] 30. Brehm Handbuch Vogel …
  • … 1857 Nov. 15. Andersson Lake Gnami [Andersson 1856] —— 26 Slightly skimmed Forbes …
  • … 1765] Oct. 23. Tracings of Iceland Chambers [Chambers 1856]. —— Mansfield Travels in …
  • … of the material from these portfolios is in DAR 205, the letter from William Edward Shuckard to …
  • … ( Notebooks , pp. 319–28). 55  The letter was addressed to Nicholas Aylward Vigors …
  • … to William Jackson Hooker. See  Correspondence  vol. 3, letter to J. D. Hooker, [5 or 12 November …
  • … 119: 21b Broughton, William Grant. 1832.  A letter in vindication of   the principles of …
  • … by Bekhur to   Garoo and the Lake Manasarowara: with a letter from … J.   G. Gerard, Esq. …
  • … 1830. On the dying struggle of the dichotomous sytem. In a letter to N. A. Vigors.  Philosophical …
  • … *119: 8v., 22v.; *128: 165 ——. 1850a. Letter to the Rev. John Bachman, on the question of …
  • … art of improving the   breeds of domestic animals. In a letter addressed to the   Right Hon. Sir …
  • … 1820.  Remarks on the improvement of   cattle, &c. in a letter to Sir John Saunders Sebright, …

Before Origin: the ‘big book’

Summary

Darwin began ‘sorting notes for Species Theory’ on 9 September 1854, the very day he concluded his eight-year study of barnacles (Darwin's Journal). He had long considered the question of species. In 1842, he outlined a theory of transmutation in a…

Matches: 12 hits

  • … to the entire natural history community by sending a letter to the Gardeners’ Chronicle , …
  • … naturalist Edward Forbes. Darwin declared to Hooker in July 1856 ‘y ou continental extensionists …
  • … of his old friend, the geologist Charles Lyell, who, in May 1856, twenty months after Darwin had …
  • … urgency to publish and, following Lyell’s advice in May 1856, began to write a sketch his theory. ‘I …
  • … without full details. ’ Writing to his cousin Fox in June 1856, Darwin openly confessed his fears …
  • … work ’ he had ‘desisted’. By November 1856, he had both good and bad news to report to Lyell: ‘ …
  • … press. Although Darwin had decided in the autumn of 1856 to write only from the materials he …
  • … wrote ten and a half chapters of his Big Book between May 1856 and June 1858. With a total of …
  • … length ’, he had complained to Hooker in December 1856. By mid-1858, only the first chapter on …
  • … it adequately. On 18 June 1858, Darwin received a now lost letter from Wallace enclosing his essay …
  • … I had, however, quite resigned myself & had written half a letter to Wallace to give up all …
  • … being the second part of his big species book written from 1856 to 1858 (Cambridge University …

Scientific Networks

Summary

Friendship|Mentors|Class|Gender In its broadest sense, a scientific network is a set of connections between people, places, and things that channel the communication of knowledge, and that substantially determine both its intellectual form and content,…

Matches: 24 hits

  • … and colonial authorities. In the nineteenth-century, letter writing was one of the most important …
  • … in times of uncertainty, controversy, or personal loss. Letter writing was not only a means of …
  • … botanist Asa Gray. Darwin and Hooker Letter 714 — Darwin, C. R. to Hooker, J. D. …
  • … and he is curious about Hooker’s thoughts. Letter 729 — Darwin, C. R. to Hooker, J. D., …
  • … to Hooker “it is like confessing a murder”. Letter 736 — Darwin, C. R. to Hooker, J. D. …
  • … wide-ranging genera. Darwin and Gray Letter 1674 — Darwin, C. R. to Gray, …
  • … and asks him to append the ranges of the species. Letter 1685 — Gray, Asa to Darwin, C. …
  • … and relationships of alpine flora in the USA. Letter 2125 — Darwin, C. R. to Gray, Asa, …
  • … and their approach to information exchange. Letter 1202 — Darwin, C. R. to Hooker, J. D …
  • … first describer’s name to specific name. Letter 1220 — Hooker, J. D. to Darwin, C. R., …
  • … perpetuity of names in species descriptions. Letter 1260 — Darwin, C. R. to Hooker, J. …
  • … ends with a discussion of lamination of gneiss. Letter 1319 — Hooker, J. D. to Darwin, …
  • … up his doubts about Darwin’s doctrines. In his second letter he talks about his visit with Falconer. …
  • … was on the Beagle voyage and afterwards. Letter 152 — Darwin, C. R. to Henslow, J. …
  • … is Henslow’s “bounden duty to lecture me”. Letter 196 — Henslow, J. S. to Darwin, C. R. …
  • … sends home a copy of his notes on the specimens. Letter 249 — Henslow, J. S. to Darwin, …
  • … sends news of Cambridge and mutual friends. Letter 251 — Darwin, C. R. to Henslow, J. S …
  • … illness and specimens are sent to Henslow. Letter 272 — Darwin, C. R. to Henslow, J. S. …
  • … collection and plans to cross the Cordilleras. Letter 1189 — Darwin, C. R. to Henslow, …
  • … Hermann Müller. Darwin and Lubbock Letter 1585 — Darwin, C. R. to Lubbock, John, …
  • … and it has reawakened his passion for entomology. Letter 1720 — Darwin, C. R. to …
  • … 147 (1857): 79–100]. Darwin and Müller Letter 5457 — Müller, H. L. H. to Darwin, …
  • … of the floral anatomy of Lopezia miniata . Letter 5471 — Darwin, C. R. to Müller, H. …
  • … Fritz Müller is Hermann Müller’s brother. Letter 5481 — Müller, H. L. H. to Darwin, C. …

Thomas Henry Huxley

Summary

Dubbed “Darwin’s bulldog” for his combative role in controversies over evolution, Huxley was a leading Victorian zoologist, science popularizer, and education reformer. He was born in Ealing, a small village west of London, in 1825. With only two years of…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … colleague as ‘my dear Huxley’ for the first time in a letter of 20 February [1855]. Darwin did have …
  • … Owen, and Louis Agassiz (see letters to J. D. Hooker, 9 May 1856 and 21 May 1856). But he considered …
  • … subject of transmutation with Huxley (see for example his letter of 23 April 1853), but he did not …

Darwin in letters, 1863: Quarrels at home, honours abroad

Summary

At the start of 1863, Charles Darwin was actively working on the manuscript of The variation of animals and plants under domestication, anticipating with excitement the construction of a hothouse to accommodate his increasingly varied botanical experiments…

Matches: 23 hits

  • … that he was ‘unwell & must write briefly’ ( letter to John Scott, 31 May [1863] ), and in a …
  • … persevered with his work on Variation until 20 July, his letter-writing dwindled considerably. The …
  • … from ‘some Quadrumanum animal’, as he put it in a letter to J. D. Hooker of 24[–5] February [1863] …
  • … ‘I declare I never in my life read anything grander’ ( letter to T. H. Huxley, 26 [February 1863] …
  • … than  Origin had (see  Correspondence  vol. 8, letter to Charles Lyell, 10 January [1860] ). …
  • … from animals like the woolly mammoth and cave bear ( see letter from Jacques Boucher de Perthes, 23 …
  • … leap from that of inferior animals made him ‘groan’ ( letter to Charles Lyell, 6 March [1863] ). …
  • … out that species were not separately created’ ( letter to Charles Lyell, 17 March [1863] ). Public …
  • … book he wished his one-time mentor had not said a word ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 24[–5] February …
  • … I respect you, as my old honoured guide & master’ ( letter to Charles Lyell, 6 March [1863] ). …
  • … that the colleague and friend who had first advised him in 1856 to write his essay on species could …
  • … against stronger statements regarding species change ( letter from Charles Lyell, 11 March 1863 ). …
  • … thinking, while Huxley’s book would scare them off ( see letter from Asa Gray, 20 April 1863 ). In …
  • … change of species by descent put him ‘into despair’ ( letter to Asa Gray, 11 May [1863] ). In the …
  • … disaffected towards Lyell and his book. In a February letter to the  Athenæum , a weekly review of …
  • … find great difficulty in answering Owen  unaided ’ ( letter from J. D. Hooker, [23 February 1863] …
  • … of so much of Lyell’s book being written by others’ ( letter from J. D. Hooker, [23 February 1863] …
  • … is wretched to see men fighting so for a little fame’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 17 March [1863] ). …
  • … overt act, and I shall watch for a fitting opportunity’ ( letter to Hugh Falconer, 5 [and 6] …
  • … God demented Owen, as a punishment for his crimes… ?’ ( letter from Hugh Falconer, 3 January [1863] …
  • … Darwin’, a transitional form between reptiles and birds ( letter from Hugh Falconer, 3 January …
  • … a significant gap had been filled in the fossil record ( letter to Hugh Falconer, 5 [and 6] January …
  • … continued to capture his and others’ attention ( see letter to J. D. Dana, 20 February [1863] , …

Darwin in letters, 1872: Job done?

Summary

'My career’, Darwin wrote towards the end of 1872, 'is so nearly closed. . .  What little more I can do, shall be chiefly new work’, and the tenor of his correspondence throughout the year is one of wistful reminiscence, coupled with a keen eye…

Matches: 29 hits

  • … What little more I can do, shall be chiefly new work’ ( letter to Francis Galton, 8 November [1872] …
  • … `big book’,  Natural selection , begun in 1856.  Coming hard on the heels of  The descent of man …
  • … anything more on 'so difficult a subject, as evolution’ ( letter to A. R. Wallace,  27 July …
  • … best efforts, set the final price at 7 s.  6 d.  ( letter from R. F. Cooke, 12 February 1872 ) …
  • … condition as I can make it’, he wrote to the translator ( letter to J. J. Moulinié, 23 September …
  • … translation remained unpublished at the end of the year ( letter from C.-F. Reinwald, 23 November …
  • … to the comparative anatomist St George Jackson Mivart ( letter to St G. J. Mivart,  11 January …
  • … comparison of Whale  & duck  most beautiful’ ( letter from A. R. Wallace, 3 March 1872 ) …
  • … a person as I am made to appear’, complained Darwin ( letter to St G. J. Mivart, 5 January 1872 ). …
  • … Darwin would renounce `fundamental intellectual errors’ ( letter from St G. J. Mivart, 6 January …
  • … was silly enough to think he felt friendly towards me’ ( letter to St G. J. Mivart, 8 January [1872 …
  • … hoping for reconciliation, if only `in another world’ ( letter from St G. J. Mivart,  10 January …
  • … have been ungracious in him not to thank Mivart for his letter.  He promised to send a copy of the …
  • … partly in mind, `chiefly perhaps because I do it badly’ ( letter to A. R. Wallace, 3 August [1872] …
  • … Darwinism is to be the theme. Surely the world moves!’ ( letter from Mary Treat, 13 December 1872 …
  • … to find that Weismann accepted it at least in part ( letter to August Weismann, 5 April 1872 ). ‘I …
  • … few naturalists in England seem inclined to believe it’ ( letter to Herman Müller, [before 5 May …
  • … reached the buzzing place where I myself was standing’ ( letter to Hermann Müller, [before 5 May …
  • … ‘as for myself it is dreadful doing nothing’ ( letter to T. H. Huxley, 22 October [1872] ). He was …
  • … to stand closer (a serried mass) and to be more erect’ ( letter to Briton Riviere, 19 May [1872] ) …
  • … and amused rather than offended by `that clever book’ ( letter to J. M. Herbert, 21 November 1872 …
  • … wrote offering Arthur May’s drawings shortly afterwards ( letter from Samuel Butler to Francis …
  • … 'exactly where, from his ignorance, he feels no doubts’ ( letter to F. C. Donders, 17 June …
  • … music provided by her husband, Richard Buckley Litchfield ( letter to H. E. Litchfield, 13 May 1872 …
  • … to Henrietta; 'I know that I am half-killed myself’ ( letter to H. E. Litchfield, 25 July 1872 …
  • … fellow’ was Darwin’s wholeheartedly partisan reply ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 14 May 1872 ). On 13 …
  • … was delivered to Gladstone a week later ( enclosure to letter from John Lubbock to W. E. Gladstone, …
  • … was `enough to make one turn into an old honest Tory’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 12 July [1872] ). …
  • … hypothesis of Mr.   Darwin , and Darwin wrote a cutting letter to  Nature  in Wallace’s defence …

Language: key letters

Summary

How and why language evolved bears on larger questions about the evolution of the human species, and the relationship between man and animals. Darwin presented his views on the development of human speech from animal sounds in The Descent of Man (1871),…

Matches: 11 hits

  • … whom he exchanged information and ideas. Letter 346: Darwin, C. R. to Darwin, C. S., 27 Feb …
  • … Caucasian languages separated from one stock.” Letter 2070: Wedgwood, Hensleigh to Darwin, …
  • … is the grinding down of former continents.” Letter 3054: Darwin, C. R. to Lyell, Charles, 2 …
  • … former,—which I tell him is perfectly logical.” Letter 5605: Darwin, C. R. to Müller, J. F. …
  • … whilst young, do they scream & make loud noise?” Letter 7040: Wedgwood, Hensleigh to …
  • … speech from gradually growing to such a stage” Letter 8367: Darwin, C. R. to Wright, …
  • … & thus unconsciously altering the breed. Letter 8962: Darwin, C. R. to Max Müller, …
  • … judge of the arguments opposed to this belief[.]” Letter 10194: Max Müller, Friedrich to …
  • … want, at least in the Science of Language […]” Letter 9887: Dawkins, W. B. to Darwin, C. R. …
  • … hold that language is not a test of race […]” Letter 11074: Sayce, A. H. to Darwin, C. R., …
  • … of wanting to eat, for this movement makes a sound like the letter m.” “For some time past I have …

Hermann Müller

Summary

Hermann (Heinrich Ludwig Hermann) Müller, was born in Mühlberg near Erfurt in 1829. He was the younger brother of Fritz Müller (1822–97). Following the completion of his secondary education at Erfurt in 1848, he studied natural sciences at Halle and Berlin…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … it was the subject of his first scientific paper (Müller 1856). In the autumn of 1855, Müller …
  • … Darwin initiated a correspondence with Müller, but that letter has not been found; however, Müller …
  • … gaining access. In October 1867, Müller sent Darwin a letter describing his discovery of …

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…

Matches: 23 hits

  • … he was jolted into action by the arrival of an unexpected letter from Alfred Russel Wallace. This …
  • … has  infinitely  exceeded my wildest hopes.—’ ( letter to Charles Lyell, 25 [November 1859] ). …
  • … work preparing his ‘big book’ on species. Begun in May 1856 at the urging of Lyell, the manuscript …
  • … to choose from the load of curious facts on record.—’ ( letter to W. D. Fox, 31 January [1858] ). …
  • … 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. Darwin’s shock and dismay is evident in the letter he subsequently wrote to Charles Lyell …
  • … Even his terms now stand as Heads of my Chapters.’ ( letter to Charles Lyell, 18 [June 1858] ). …
  • … on Charles Lyell’s endorsement, the editors have dated the letter 18 [June 1858]. However, the …
  • … McKinney has suggested that Darwin received Wallace’s letter and manuscript on 3 June 1858, the same …
  • … Brooks maintains that Darwin received Wallace’s letter even earlier, perhaps as early as 14 May. …
  • … of the Peninsular & Oriental Company, and assuming that the letter to Darwin was posted at the …
  • … 20 May via Southampton. According to Brooks, Darwin kept the letter for a month, during which time …
  • … at Down on 18 June. In the absence of Wallace’s letter or of any firm evidence for the date of its …
  • … work, and he shows no sign of anxiety. He says in a letter to Syms Covington, 18 May [1858], that he …
  • … ‘There is not least hurry in world about my M.S.’ In his letter to Hooker of 8 June [1858], he …
  • … of someone who is distressed, as Darwin clearly was in his letter to Lyell, at the prospect of …
  • … papers at the Linnean Society on 1 July 1858, including a letter from Wallace to Hooker thanking him …
  • … Darwin was during the days immediately following his letter to Lyell. On 18 June 1858, his eldest …
  • … of his material would require a ‘small volume’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 12 October [1858] ). …
  • … kidney beans’, to the  Gardeners’ Chronicle  (see letter to Gardeners’ Chronicle, [before 13 …
  • … for the work. Again, he called upon Lyell for advice ( letter to Charles Lyell, 28 March [1859] ). …

Correlation of growth: deaf blue-eyed cats, pigs, and poison

Summary

As he was first developing his ideas, among the potential problems Darwin recognised with natural selection was how to account for developmental change that conferred no apparent advantage.  He proposed a ‘mysterious law’ of ‘correlation of growth’ where…

Matches: 4 hits

  • … to write up a ‘preliminary essay’ on his views in 1856, he went back to Fox to check his facts, …
  • … case of ‘correlated variability’ from what in a letter to another critic, George Maw, he calls ‘ …
  • … observed ‘ not one dozen, but dozens of white cats ’ (letter originally tentatively dated 1860, …
  • … asking for information – a long but unsatisfactory letter from the African explorer and army …

Darwin in letters, 1865: Delays and disappointments

Summary

The year was marked by three deaths of personal significance to Darwin: Hugh Falconer, a friend and supporter; Robert FitzRoy, captain of the Beagle; and William Jackson Hooker, director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, and father of Darwin’s friend…

Matches: 31 hits

  • … The death of Hugh Falconer Darwin’s first letter to Hooker of 1865 suggests that the family …
  • … having all the Boys at home: they make the house jolly’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 7 January [1865] …
  • … had failed to include among the grounds of the award ( see letter from Hugh Falconer to Erasmus …
  • … his letters to Darwin, and Darwin responded warmly: ‘Your letter is by far the grandest eulogium …
  • … may well rest content that I have not laboured in vain’ ( letter to Hugh Falconer, 6 January [1865] …
  • … always a most kind friend to me. So the world goes.—’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 2 February [1865] …
  • … for our griefs & pains: these alone are unalloyed’ ( letter from J. D. Hooker, 3 February 1865 …
  • … gas.— Sic transit gloria mundi, with a vengeance’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 9 February [1865] ). …
  • … added, ‘I know it is folly & nonsense to try anyone’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 7 January [1865] …
  • … ineffective, and Darwin had given it up by early July ( see letter to J. D. Hooker, [10 July 1865] …
  • … of anything, & that almost exclusively bread & meat’ ( letter to Asa Gray, 15 August [1865] …
  • … better, attributing the improvement to Jones’s diet ( see letter to T. H. Huxley, 4 October [1865] …
  • … he was ‘able to write about an hour on most days’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 22 December [1865] ). …
  • … others very forward, except the last & concluding one’ ( letter to John Murray, 31 March [1865] …
  • … my book will be ready for the press in the autumn’ ( letter to John Murray, 4 April [1865] ). In …
  • … however, ‘I am never idle when I can do anything’ ( letter to John Murray, 2 June [1865] ). It was …
  • … might be more willing to bear the expense of the woodcuts ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 7 January [1865 …
  • … & I loathe the whole subject like tartar emetic’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 19 January [1865] ) …
  • … you will be an unnatural parent, for it is your child’ ( letter to Asa Gray, 19 April 1865 ; …
  • … needed for references, probably from the Linnean Society ( letter to [Richard Kippist], 4 June …
  • … in or before November 1864 ( Correspondence vol. 12, letter to Ernst Haeckel, 21 November [1864 …
  • … 1865 that he had just finished hearing it read aloud ( letter to Fritz Müller, 10 August [1865] ). …
  • … Linnean Society for publication in Müller’s name ( see letter from Fritz Müller, [12 and 31 August, …
  • … so weak that I am not able to do any scientific work’ ( letter to Fritz Müller, 20 September [1865] …
  • … coloured varieties (see  Correspondence  vol. 10, letter to John Scott, 19 November [1862] ). …
  • … species arising’ ( Correspondence vol. 9, letter to J. D. Hooker, 28 September [1861] ). …
  • … experiments in 1863 (see Correspondence  vol. 11, letter from John Scott, 21 September [1863] …
  • … India in late 1864, despite suffering from sea-sickness ( letter from John Scott, 21 July 1865 ). …
  • … though he praised Scott’s ‘industry & ability’ ( letter from J. D. Hooker, [10 March 1865] ). …
  • … that he would take up the work again when he had time ( letter from John Scott, 21 July 1865 ); at …
  • … mind, & I can hang on it a good many groups of facts.’ ( Letter to T. H. Huxley, 27 May [1865] …

The writing of "Origin"

Summary

From a quiet rural existence at Down in Kent, filled with steady work on his ‘big book’ on the transmutation of species, Darwin was jolted into action in 1858 by the arrival of an unexpected letter (no longer extant) from Alfred Russel Wallace outlining a…

Matches: 23 hits

  • … whole has infinitely exceeded my wildest hopes.— (letter to Charles Lyell,  25 [November …
  • … work preparing his ‘big book’ on species. Begun in May 1856 at the urging of Lyell, the manuscript …
  • … to choose from the load of curious facts on record.—’ (letter to W. D. Fox, 31 January [1858] ). …
  • … 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. Darwin’s shock and dismay is evident in the letter he subsequently wrote to Charles Lyell …
  • … Even his terms now stand as Heads of my Chapters.’ (letter to Charles Lyell, 18 [June 1858] ). …
  • … on Charles Lyell’s endorsement, the editors have dated the letter 18 [June 1858]. However, the …
  • … McKinney has suggested that Darwin received Wallace’s letter and manuscript on 3 June 1858, the same …
  • … Brooks maintains that Darwin received Wallace’s letter even earlier, perhaps as early as 14 May. …
  • … of the Peninsular & Oriental Company, and assuming that the letter to Darwin was posted at the …
  • … 20 May via Southampton. Accordingto Brooks, Darwin kept the letter for a month, during which time he …
  • … at Down on 18 June. In the absence of Wallace’s letter or of any firm evidence for the date of its …
  • … work, and he shows no sign of anxiety. He says in a letter to Syms Covington, 18 May [1858] , …
  • … ‘There is not least hurry in world about my M.S.’ In his letter to Hooker of 8 June [1858] , he …
  • … of someone who is distressed, as Darwin clearly was in his letter to Lyell, at the prospect of …
  • … Society on 1 July 1858. It also includes an unpublished letter from Wallace to Hooker thanking him …
  • … Darwin was during the days immediately following his letter to Lyell. On 18 June 1858, his eldest …
  • … abstract of his material would require a ‘small volume’ (letter to J. D. Hooker, 12 October [1858] …
  • … for the work. Again, he called upon Lyell for advice (letter to Charles Lyell, 28 March [1859] ). …
  • … Darwin held firm to the original plan of his book (see letter from Elwin to Murray, 3 May 1859 , …
  • … ‘an abstract’ from the title of the forthcoming book (letter to Charles Lyell, 30 March [1859] ). …
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