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Darwin Correspondence Project

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Darwin in letters, 1879: Tracing roots

Summary

Darwin spent a considerable part of 1879 in the eighteenth century. His journey back in time started when he decided to publish a biographical account of his grandfather Erasmus Darwin to accompany a translation of an essay on Erasmus’s evolutionary ideas…

Matches: 13 hits

  • … Erasmus’s evolutionary ideas by the German science writer Ernst Krause. Darwin’s preoccupation with …
  • … Darwin as ‘the deep thinker’, while friends such as Ernst Haeckel, who had rebutted the physician …
  • … now widely accepted in Germany. ‘On this festive day’, Haeckel told Darwin, ‘you can look back, with …
  • … life’s work, which is crowned with glory’ ( letter from Ernst Haeckel, 9 February 1879 ). The …
  • … February 1879 ). Carus Sterne was the pseudonym of Ernst Krause, editor of the journal …
  • … theory of development in connection with Charles Darwin and Ernst Haeckel. Kosmos was, as …
  • … shamefully ignorant of my grandfathers life’ ( letter to Ernst Krause, 14 March 1879 ). …
  • … might end up ‘interfering with each other’ ( letter to Ernst Krause, 27 March 1879 ). Darwin’s aim …
  • … an introduction ‘almost indispensable’ ( letter from Ernst Krause, 7 June 1879 ). Darwin welcomed …
  • … into ridicule. He hates scientific men’ ( letter to Ernst Krause, 14 May 1879 ). From the …
  • … the views of the other botanists. He was glad to know that Ernst Stahl and Albert Bernhard Frank did …
  • … 6 March [1879] ). When Darwin’s staunch German defender Ernst Haeckel was in England, he was …
  • … to Darwin about ‘Darwinism in Germany’ ( letter from Ernst Haeckel, 30 August 1879 ). However, the …

Photograph album of German and Austrian scientists

Summary

The album was sent to Darwin to mark his birthday on 12 February 1877 by the civil servant Emil Rade, and contained 165 portraits of German and Austrian scientists. The work was lavishly produced and bound in blue velvet with metal embossing. Its ornate…

Matches: 5 hits

  • … in larger portraits at the centre or the top of the page. Ernst Haeckel was given special prominence …
  • … the greatest honour which I have ever received ( Letter to Ernst Haeckel, 16 February 1877 ) …
  • … 12 March 1877 ) Familiar faces Ernst Haeckel had been the driving force behind …
  • … in Germany. Despite being the instigator, it appears that Haeckel was not satisfied with the final …
  • … on mutual adaptation. Also featured was the science writer Ernst Krause, who edited Kosmos , a …

Darwin in letters, 1874: A turbulent year

Summary

The year 1874 was one of consolidation, reflection, and turmoil for Darwin. He spent the early months working on second editions of Coral reefs and Descent of man; the rest of the year was mostly devoted to further research on insectivorous plants. A…

Matches: 4 hits

  • his poor health so frequently in correspondence that Ernst Haeckel inferred that he was well from
  • … ), preferring to attack Mivart in print, as in his review of Ernst Haeckels  Anthropogenie  in
  • of Darwins work. His controversial German admirer, Ernst Haeckel, sent the fifth edition of his  …
  • educated persons here in Germany’ ( letter from Ernst Haeckel, 20 December 1874 ).  …

List of correspondents

Summary

Below is a list of Darwin's correspondents with the number of letters for each one. Click on a name to see the letters Darwin exchanged with that correspondent.    "A child of God" (1) Abberley,…

Matches: 5 hits

  • … James (1) Dieffenbach, Ernst (13) …
  • … Ercolani, G. B. (2) Ernst, Adolf (9) …
  • … S. M. (2) Hesse-Wartegg, Ernst von (3) …
  • … Kraus, Carl (b) (3) Krause, Ernst (94) …
  • … Pfeiffer, E. J. (2) Pfitzer, Ernst (1) …

Darwin in letters, 1878: Movement and sleep

Summary

In 1878, Darwin devoted most of his attention to the movements of plants. He investigated the growth pattern of roots and shoots, studying the function of specific organs in this process. Working closely with his son Francis, Darwin devised a series of…

Matches: 2 hits

  • … to J. D. Hooker, 14 December [1878] ). Writing to Ernst Haeckel on his sixty-ninth birthday …
  • … in September 1877, Darwin’s outspoken supporter Ernst Haeckel championed the teaching of evolution …

Darwin in letters, 1868: Studying sex

Summary

The quantity of Darwin’s correspondence increased dramatically in 1868 due largely to his ever-widening research on human evolution and sexual selection.Darwin’s theory of sexual selection as applied to human descent led him to investigate aspects of the…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … take the form of a ‘short essay’ on man ( letter to Ernst Haeckel, 3 July 1868 ). But this work …
  • … different order of pride was expressed on 9 November by Ernst Haeckel on the birth of his son …
  • … Lepus Darwinii  in honour of his hero ( letter from Ernst Haeckel, 22 June 1868 ). Darwin …

Darwin in letters,1866: Survival of the fittest

Summary

The year 1866 began well for Charles Darwin, as his health, after several years of illness, was now considerably improved. In February, Darwin received a request from his publisher, John Murray, for a new edition of  Origin. Darwin got the fourth…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … among them Robert Caspary, John Traherne Moggridge, and Ernst Haeckel, and also a meeting with …
  • … prevailed over considerations of health in this case. Ernst Haeckel Nor could Darwin …
  • … eulogium which it has ever received’ ( letter to Ernst Haeckel, 18 August [1866] ). Darwin clearly …

Was Darwin an ecologist?

Summary

One of the most fascinating aspects of Charles Darwin’s correspondence is the extent to which the experiments he performed at his home in Down, in the English county of Kent, seem to prefigure modern scientific work in ecology.

Matches: 20 hits

  • was coined by the German scientist and theorist Ernst Haeckel in 1866. ‘By ecology, we mean the
  • the broad sense, all theconditions of existence.”’ (Ernst HaeckelGenerelle Morphologie 2: 286; …
  • and some of his correspondents complained mildly about Haeckels propensity for making up words, but
  • appeared in English in E. Ray Lankesters translation of Haeckels History of creation in 1876; it
  • in his letters. However, Darwins Origin of species was Haeckels primary inspiration for his
  • of organisms to their environment for some time before Haeckel thought of a word for the activity; …
  • will no doubt continue to change in the future. Indeed, when Haeckel coined the term ecology he
  • and left such study to anuncriticalnatural history (Haeckel 1866, 2: 2867; see also Stauffer
  • Darwins caution is evident in his correspondence with Haeckel, himself a passionate theorist who
  • upheaval that he was confident Darwins work would cause. Haeckel acknowledged himself to have been
  • on me, as your theory of the evolution of species’, Haeckel wrote to Darwin on 9 July 1864 . ‘In
  • to know nature as she really is.’ It seems from Haeckels letter that what most struck him
  • history of creation’. Darwins response to Haeckels request for an account of his great
  • fact it must have been obvious to everyone except, perhaps, Haeckel himself, that Darwins aims and
  • barnacles, and in botany. In the correspondence between Haeckel and Darwin, the importance of Darwin
  • 1867The reign of law. London: Alexander Strahan. Haeckel, Ernst. German zoologist. …
  • Lankester, Edwin Ray. Zoologist, and translator of Haeckels Natürliche Schöpfungsgeschichte. …
  • by D. Leveyet al . New York: CABI Publishing. Haeckel, Ernst. 1866Generelle
  • … . 2 vols. Berlin: Georg Reimer. Haeckel, Ernst. 1876The history of creation: or the
  • Richards, Robert J. 2008The tragic sense of life: Ernst Haeckel and the struggle over

Controversy

Summary

The best-known controversies over Darwinian theory took place in public or in printed reviews. Many of these were highly polemical, presenting an over-simplified picture of the disputes. Letters, however, show that the responses to Darwin were extremely…

Matches: 3 hits

  • public reaction. This exchange of letters with the zoologist Ernst Haeckel, an ardent proponent of
  • tactics. Letter 5500Darwin, C. R. to Haeckel, E. P. A., 12 Apr [1867] Darwin is
  • side of the attacked person. Letter 5533Haeckel, E. P. A. to Darwin, C. R., 12 May

Darwin in letters, 1876: In the midst of life

Summary

1876 was the year in which the Darwins became grandparents for the first time.  And tragically lost their daughter-in-law, Amy, who died just days after her son's birth.  All the letters from 1876 are now published in volume 24 of The Correspondence…

Matches: 5 hits

  • about his life ( Correspondence vol. 23, letter from Ernst von Hesse-Wartegg, 20 September 1875
  • from an ardent supporter of Darwin, the German zoologist Ernst Haeckel. Opposing Darwins views for
  • passed on to newly formed plastidules. Darwin thought Haeckels essayclever & striking’, but
  • pangenesis into asubstantial theory’, Darwin forwarded Haeckels essay to him on 29 May. If
  • were able to host lunches for eminent German visitors, first Haeckel on the 26 September, and then

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: 1 hits

  • … November 1864 ( Correspondence vol. 12, letter to Ernst Haeckel, 21 November [1864] ). Since …

Darwin in letters, 1871: An emptying nest

Summary

The year 1871 was an extremely busy and productive one for Darwin, with the publication in February of his long-awaited book on human evolution, Descent of man. The other main preoccupation of the year was the preparation of his manuscript on expression.…

Matches: 2 hits

  • … ( letter from George Henslow, 5 December 1871 ). Ernst Haeckel boasted of his month spent at a …
  • … one and the same  catarrhine monkey !’ ( letter from Ernst Haeckel, 21 December 1871 ). …

Darwin in letters, 1867: A civilised dispute

Summary

Charles Darwin’s major achievement in 1867 was the completion of his large work, The variation of animals and plants under domestication (Variation). The importance of Darwin’s network of correspondents becomes vividly apparent in his work on expression in…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … supporters to write to his most vociferous German champion, Ernst Haeckel, to encourage him to tone …
  • … one of his most devoted supporters, the German zoologist Ernst Haeckel, to moderate his public …
  • … of the truth of his own conclusions’ ( letter to Ernst Haeckel, 12 April [1867] ). All …

Darwin in letters, 1864: Failing health

Summary

On receiving a photograph from Charles Darwin, the American botanist Asa Gray wrote on 11 July 1864: ‘the venerable beard gives the look of your having suffered, and … of having grown older’.  Because of poor health, Because of poor health, Darwin…

Matches: 2 hits

  • … by a former governess at Down House, Camilla Ludwig. From Ernst Haeckel, Darwin learned of the …
  • … called me her German “Darwin–Mann” ’ ( letter from Ernst Haeckel, 10 August 1864 ). Haeckel sent …

What did Darwin believe?

Summary

What did Darwin really believe about God? the Christian revelation? the implications of his theory of evolution for religious faith? These questions were asked again and again in the years following the publication of Origin of species (1859). They are…

Matches: 6 hits

  • mutual concern for many years. Huxley, Wallace, and Haeckel The value of methodical
  • role model. Darwins leading German supporter, Ernst Haeckel, complained to Darwin in 1867, …
  • controversy, allowing others like Huxley, Wallace, and Haeckel to battle on his behalf. Darwin did
  • would alienate potential allies and disturb old allegiances. Haeckels letter had been prompted by
  • style also left him vulnerable to critics, as Wallace and Haeckel pointed out. To this day, Darwins
  • reference to the present time (London: Elliot Stock). Haeckel, Ernst. German zoologist. …

Darwin in letters, 1877: Flowers and honours

Summary

Ever since the publication of Expression, Darwin’s research had centred firmly on botany. The year 1877 was no exception. The spring and early summer were spent completing Forms of flowers, his fifth book on a botanical topic. He then turned to the…

Matches: 6 hits

  • … of colour sense. Darwin had written to the editor Ernst Ludwig Krause on 30 June 1877 , ‘I have …
  • … der Entwickelungslehre in Verbindung mit Charles Darwin und Ernst Haeckel (Journal for uniform …
  • … by institution. The most prominent ‘torchbearer’ was Ernst Haeckel, whose portrait appeared first …
  • … age. The Dutch album and the letters from Rade and Haeckel both refer to Darwin’s 69th birthday, and …
  • … ancestry. The German zoologist and physician Carl Theodor Ernst von Siebold sent photographs of a …
  • … ). An American banker, William Burrows Bowles, having read Ernst Haeckel on ‘Pithecanthropus alalus’ …

Interview with John Hedley Brooke

Summary

John Hedley Brooke is President of the Science and Religion Forum as well as the author of the influential Science and Religion: Some Historical Perspectives (Cambridge University Press, 1991). He has had a long career in the history of science and…

Matches: 2 hits

  • … aggressive stance ? one typified, say, by Thomas Huxley or Ernst Haeckel ? are these people more …
  • … in the 19th century or whether we should look to Huxley and Haeckel and others as being more typical …

Darwin in letters, 1875: Pulling strings

Summary

‘I am getting sick of insectivorous plants’, Darwin confessed in January 1875. He had worked on the subject intermittently since 1859, and had been steadily engaged on a book manuscript for nine months; January also saw the conclusion of a bitter dispute…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … and supporters included long-term correspondents such as Ernst Haeckel, Fritz and Hermann Müller, …
  • … is yet another laurel in the wreath of your fame ’, Haeckel wrote on 6 June , ‘to have a …
  • … Huxley at South Kensington, with visiting positions under Haeckel at Jena and Dohrn at Naples. …

German and Dutch photograph albums

Summary

Darwin Day 2018: To celebrate Darwin's 209th birthday, we present two lavishly produced albums of portrait photographs which Darwin received from continental admirers 141 years ago. These unusual gifts from Germany and the Netherlands are made…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … Darwin’s most vocal supporters in Germany, the zoologist, Ernst Haeckel, and includes German and …

Divergence

Summary

In a later account of how he had come to the evolutionary ideas published in Origin, Darwin wrote: 'Of all the minor points, the last which I appreciated was the importance & cause of the principle of Divergence' (to Ernst Haeckel, [after 10]…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … the importance & cause of the principle of Divergence' (to Ernst Haeckel, [after 10] August …
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