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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] ). …
  • … ‘I fear L. will get scant pity even from his own side, for F spoke to me the other night in the most …
  • … were himself, Hooker, Huxley, Alfred Russel Wallace, and John Lubbock. Honours abroad …
  • … Copley Medal had been unsuccessful ( see letter from E. A. Darwin to Emma Darwin, 11 November [1863 …
  • … of the Royal Society ( see letter from Edward Sabine to John Phillips, 12 November 1863 ). …
  • … year with the Hertfordshire nurseryman Thomas Rivers. John Scott Darwin had found a …
  • … of hybridity and sterility at the end of the previous year. John Scott, a gardener at the Royal …
  • … the results of which were published in 1868 ( see letter to John Scott, 25 and 28 May [1863] ). …
  • … hoped would counteract Huxley’s criticism ( letter from John Scott, 23 July [1863] ). Darwin …
  • … Darwin had also encouraged him to write ( see letter to John Scott, 12 April [1863] ). In this …
  • … that your paper will have permanent value’ ( letter to John Scott, 31 May [1863] ). Scott received …
  • … the “Origin” is not at all palatable!’ ( letter from John Scott, [3 June 1863] ). Darwin’s …
  • … a position offered in Darjeeling, India ( see letter from John Scott, 22 May 1863 , and letter
  • … 1860; it continued to capture his attention ( see letter to John Scott, 12 April [1863] ). …
  • … the bookcase and around the head of the sofa ( letter to W. E. Darwin, [25 July 1863], and …
  • … to Malvern the following week. Three letters in August from John Goodsir, professor of anatomy at …
  • … of all such matters as your stomach’ ( see letter from John Goodsir, 21 August [1863] ; letter

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: 21 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., …
  • Letter 8611 - Cupples, A. J. to Darwin, E., [8 November1872] Anne Jane Cupples, …
  • … pig and her niece’s ears. Letter 8701 - Lubbock, E. F . to Darwin, [1873] …
  • … insects. Men: Letter 2221 - Blyth, E. to Darwin, [22 February 1858] …
  • … patience”. Letter 4242 - Hildebrand, F. H. G. to Darwin, [16 July 1863] …
  • … and orangs. Letter 5705 - Haast, J. F. J. von to Darwin, [4 December 1867] …
  • … 6815 - Scott, J. to Darwin, [2 July 1869] John Scott responds to Darwin’s queries …
  • … in Margate. Letter 7433  - Wedgwood,  F. to Darwin, [9 January 1871] …
  • Letter 2055  - Langton, E. to Darwin,  F., [21 February 1857] Darwin’s nephew, …
  • … suggestion. Letter 5254  - Hildebrand, F. H. G. to Darwin, [23 October 1866] …
  • …  - Weir, J. J. to Darwin, [24 March 1868] John Weir describes experiments he is undertaking …
  • … home. Letter 10517  - Darwin to Francis, F., [29 May 1876] Darwin gives his …
  • … J., [5 April 1859] Darwin asks his publisher, John Murray, to forward a manuscript copy of …
  • … writing. Letter 3001  - Darwin to Lubbock, J., [28 November 1860] Darwin …
  • …  - Weir, J. J. to Darwin, [24 March 1868] John Weir describes experiments he is undertaking …

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: 25 hits

  • be done by observation during prolonged intervals’ ( letter to D. T. Gardner, [ c . 27 August
  • pleasures of shooting and collecting beetles ( letter from W. D. Fox, 8 May [1874] ).  Such
  • Andone looks backwards much more than forwards’ ( letter to W. D. Fox, 11 May [1874] ). …
  • was an illusory hope.— I feel very old & helpless’  ( letter to B. J. Sulivan, 6 January [1874] …
  • inferred that he was well from his silence on the matter ( letter from Ernst Haeckel, 26 October
  • Erasmuss house. The event was led by the medium Charles E. Williams, and was attended by George
  • all the horrid bother of correction’ ( letter to H. E. Litchfield, 21 [March 1874] ). The book
  • Descent  was published in November 1874 ( letter from R. F. Cooke, 12 November 1874 ). Though
  • subsequent print runs would be very good ( letter from R. F. Cooke, 12 November 1874 ). …
  • Quarterly Review  discussing works on primitive man by John Lubbock and Edward Burnett Tylor. It
  • of anonymous reviews. Its proprietor was none other than John Murray, Darwins publisher. So
  • to review me in a hostile spirit’ ( letter to John Murray, 11 August 1874 ). Darwin was
  • number of the Review & in the same type’  ( letter from John Murray, 12 August 1874 ). George
  • anonymous reviews. While staying with Hooker over Christmas, John Tyndall, professor at and
  • asthe natural outflow of his character’ ( letter from John Tyndall, 28 December 1874 ). …
  • to purchase the wooded land, which he had been renting from John Lubbock, led to a straining of
  • with lawyers over a doubt that it may have been included in Lubbocks marriage settlements, the sale
  • artificial gastric juice  for about a week ( letter from E. E. Klein, 14 May 1874 ). John Burdon
  • of other insect-eating plants. The surgeon and botanist John Ralfs sent  Utricularia  from
  • more in my life than this days work’ ( letter to D. F. Nevill, 18 September [1874] ).Franciss
  • structure and mechanism that Darwin agreed with ( letter to F. J. Cohn, 12 October 1874 ). Darwin
  • she valued the photograph he sent highly ( letter from D. F. Nevill, [11 September 1874] ). …
  • try to get it exhibited at a Royal Society of London soirée  (see letter from Anton Dohrn, 6 April
  • printed appeal for funds, raising £860 ( Circular to John Lubbock, P. L. Sclater, Charles Lyell, W. …
  • Tyndall, 12 August [1874] ). Hooker reported thatLubbocks Lecture went off admirablybut

Origin is 160; Darwin's 1875 letters now online

Summary

To mark the 160th anniversary of the publication of Origin of species, the full transcripts and footnotes of nearly 650 letters to and from Charles Darwin in 1875 are published online for the first time. You can read about Darwin's life in 1875…

Matches: 10 hits

  • been blackballed by the Linnean Society. John Burdon Sanderson, Edward Emanuel
  • very much more about the wide distribution of my books.  ( Letter to RFCooke, 29 June [1875] ) …
  • over the sickening work of preparing new Editions .  ( Letter to JDHooker, 18 August [1875] ) …
  • insensible, if  the experiment made this possible  ( Letter to HELitchfield, 4 January [1875] …
  • me in the vestry of having made false statements  ( Letter to John Lubbock, 8 April 1875 ) …
  • of Down, George Sketchley Ffinden, continued to be poor. John Lubbock, another local landowner and
  • without much success. Emma Darwin was happy to report to John Brodie Innes, the former vicarthat
  • Such energy as yours almost always succeeds  ( Letter to GHDarwin, 13 October [1875] ) …
  • done in science I owe to the study of his great works ( Letter to ABBuckley, 23 February 1875
  • act which any scientific Socy. has done in my time  ( Letter to JDHooker, [12 December 1875] ) …

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: 26 hits

  • What little more I can do, shall be chiefly new work’ ( letter to Francis Galton, 8 November [1872] …
  • anything more on 'so difficult a subject, as evolution’ ( letter to ARWallace,  27 July
  • to spread my views’, he wrote to his publisher, John Murray, on 30 January , shortly after
  • best efforts, set the final price at 7 s.  6 d.  ( letter from RFCooke, 12 February 1872 ) …
  • condition as I can make it’, he wrote to the translator ( letter to JJMoulinié, 23 September
  • translation remained unpublished at the end of the year ( letter from C.-FReinwald, 23 November
  • to the comparative anatomist St George Jackson Mivart ( letter to St GJMivart,  11 January
  • comparison of Whale  & duck  most beautiful’ ( letter from ARWallace, 3 March 1872 ) …
  • a person as I am made to appear’, complained Darwin ( letter to St GJMivart, 5 January 1872 ). …
  • selection is somewhat under a cloud’, he wrote to JETaylor on 13 January , and he complained
  • from his ignorance, he feels no doubts’ ( letter to FCDonders, 17 June 1872 ). Right up to the
  • by her husband, Richard Buckley Litchfield ( letter to HELitchfield, 13 May 1872 ). Delivery
  • … 'I know that I am half-killed myself’ ( letter to HELitchfield, 25 July 1872 ). A
  • Hookers cause was taken up by his friends, in particular John Lubbock and John Tyndall, as one
  • to Gladstone a week later ( enclosure to letter from John Lubbock to WEGladstone, 20 June 1872
  • photographic plates with his overseas publishers, and with John Murrays assistant, the excitable
  • agreed to let them have it for love!!!’ ( letter from RFCooke, 1 August 1872 ). It had
  • …  & have not taken care of ourselves’ ( letter from RFCooke, 20 November 1872 ). A
  • of the booksellers, encouraged an originally cautious John Murray to gamble on the books success: & …
  • attractive dishes in his `Literary Banquet’ (letters from John Murray, 6 November [1872] and 9
  • in the face of a disappointed public ( letter from RFCooke, 25 November 1872 ). Among those
  • Mary Lloyd, were vying to read it first ( letter from FPCobbe, [26 November 1872] ). …
  • darkness by an industrial strike ( letter from RFCooke, 6 December 1872 ).  Caught out by the
  • to supply comparative observations, and Darwins protégé John Scott, now employed as a curator in
  • than usual. One such old friend was Sarah Haliburton, née Owen, to whose sister, Fanny, Darwin had
  • a copy of  Expression  to another old Cambridge friend, John Maurice Herbert, who when they were

Darwin in letters, 1882: Nothing too great or too small

Summary

In 1882, Darwin reached his 74th year Earthworms had been published the previous October, and for the first time in decades he was not working on another book. He remained active in botanical research, however. Building on his recent studies in plant…

Matches: 22 hits

  • … ‘I feel a very old man, & my course is nearly run’ ( letter to Lawson Tait, 13 February 1882 ) …
  • … fertility of crosses between differently styled plants ( letter from Fritz Müller, 1 January 1882 …
  • … In January, Darwin corresponded with George John Romanes about new varieties of sugar cane produced …
  • … François Marie Glaziou (see Correspondence vol. 28, letter from Arthur de Souza Corrêa, 20 …
  • … the flowers & experimentising on them’ ( letter to J. E. Todd, 10 April 1882 ). While …
  • … Quarterly Review , owned by Darwin’s publisher John Murray, carried an anonymous article on the …
  • … or later write differently about evolution’ ( letter to John Murray, 21 January 1882 ). The author …
  • … their burrows ( Correspondence vol. 29, letter from J. F. Simpson, 8 November 1881 ). He …
  • … summit, whence it rolls down the sides’ ( letter from J. F. Simpson, 7 January 1882 ). The …
  • … to have rather the best of the fight’ ( letter from G. F. Crawte, 11 March 1882 ). The battle …
  • … Darwin had a less heated discussion with the painter John Collier on the topic of science and art. …
  • … himself to so dreadful a man, as Huxley’ ( letter to John Collier, 16 February 1882 ). Collier had …
  • … be the same without my consciousness?’ ( letter from John Collier, 22 February 1882 ; T. H. Huxley …
  • … he is a good deal depressed about himself’ (letter from H. E. Litchfield to G. H. Darwin, 17 March …
  • … is very calm but she has cried a little’ (letter from H. E. Litchfield to G. H. Darwin, [19 April …
  • … overflowing in tenderness’ (letter from Emma Darwin to W. E. Darwin, 10 May 1882 (DAR 219.1: 150)). …
  • … and admirers. One of the most touching was from John Lubbock, whose interest in natural history at …
  • … we adjourned as a small tribute of respect’ (letter from John Lubbock to Francis Darwin, 20 April …
  • … he had witnessed an earthquake in 1835 ( letter from R. E. Alison, [March–July 1835 ]). …
  • … without any mercy’ ( letter from Emma Wedgwood to F. E. E. Wedgwood, [28 October 1836] , letter
  • … ). Darwin’s former mentor at University of Cambridge, John Stevens Henslow, was not a …
  • … Origin, a number of Darwin’s friends, Huxley, John Lubbock, and Charles Lyell, each addressed the …

Darwin's in letters, 1873: Animal or vegetable?

Summary

Having laboured for nearly five years on human evolution, sexual selection, and the expression of emotions, Darwin was able to devote 1873 almost exclusively to his beloved plants. He resumed work on the digestive powers of sundews and Venus fly traps, and…

Matches: 22 hits

  • … I omitted to observe, which I ought to have observed” ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 12 January [1873] …
  • … work your wicked will on it—root leaf & branch!” ( letter from J. D. Hooker, 12 January 1873 ) …
  • … Thomas Lauder Brunton, a specialist in pharmacology, and John Scott Burdon Sanderson, a professor at …
  • … parts of the flower would become modified & correlated” ( letter to T. H. Farrer, 14 August …
  • … it again, “for Heaven knows when it will be ready” ( letter to John Murray, 4 May [1873] ). …
  • … we take notes and take tracings of their burrows” ( letter from Francis Darwin, 14 August [1873] ) …
  • … in importance; and if so more places will be created” ( letter to E. A. Darwin, 20 September 1873 …
  • … our unfortunate family being fit for continuous work” ( letter from E. A. Darwin, 25 September …
  • … on any point; for I knew my own ignorance before hand” ( letter to George Cupples, 28 April [1873] …
  • … “he would fly at the Empr’s throat like a bulldog” ( letter from L. M. Forster to H. E. Litchfield, …
  • … force & truth of the great principle of inheritance!” ( letter to F. S. B. F. de Chaumont, 3 …
  • … the heavy breathing that accompanied sexual intercourse? (letter from ?, [1873?]). The Scottish …
  • … with up lines; & sadness & decay with the reverse—” ( letter from William Main, 2 April …
  • … with leading physiologists such as David Ferrier and John Hughlings Jackson. Darwin declined to …
  • … Instinct  In February, Darwin received a letter from John Traherne Moggridge on the nature of …
  • … as not to cause offence or embarrassment. As Ellen Frances Lubbock advised, “I  do  think … it …
  • … we should feel it a privilege to offer” ( letter from E. F. Lubbock, [before 7 April 1873] ). …
  • … A group of Huxley’s close friends, including Hooker, John Lubbock, Herbert Spencer, John Tyndall, …
  • … your own power & usefulness”, citing the examples of John Stuart Mill and Charles Lyell, who …
  • … from Ernst Meitzen, 17 January 1873 ). A poor-law officer, John Farr, wrote: “Faith like Species, …
  • … more permanent than species are permanent” ( letter from John Farr, 7 July 1873 ). Further …
  • … closer to home, when he was graced by an invitation from John Jenner Weir to act as a patron of the …

Religion

Summary

Design|Personal Belief|Beauty|The Church Perhaps the most notorious realm of controversy over evolution in Darwin's day was religion. The same can be said of the evolution controversy today; however the nature of the disputes and the manner in…

Matches: 21 hits

  • … of departure reviews of Origin . The second is a single letter from naturalist A. R. Wallace to …
  • … everything is the result of “brute force”. Letter 2855 — Darwin, C. R. to Gray, Asa, 3 …
  • … nature, as he is in a “muddle” on this issue. Letter 3256 — Darwin, C. R. to Gray, Asa, …
  • … shares a witty thought experiment about an angel. Letter 3342 — Darwin, C. R. to Gray, …
  • … He asks Gray some questions about design. Letter 6167 — Darwin, C. R. to Gray, Asa, 8 …
  • … of my precipice”. Darwin and Wallace Letter 5140 — Wallace, A. R. to Darwin, …
  • … of variations. Darwin and Graham Letter 13230 — Darwin, C. R. to Graham, …
  • … of people, including members of his own family. Letter 441 — Wedgwood, Emma to Darwin, …
  • … about his “honest & conscientious doubts”. Letter 471 — Darwin, Emma to Darwin, C. …
  • … there is a danger in giving up revelation”. Letter 2534 — Kingsley, Charles to Darwin, …
  • … need of an act of intervention to bring change. Letter 2548 — Sedgwick, Adam to Darwin, …
  • … with that knowledge which only He can give me.” Letter 5303 — Boole, M. E. to Darwin, C …
  • Letter 5307 — Darwin, C. R. to Boole, M. E., 14 Dec 1866 Darwin believes he is unable to …
  • … course. Letter 8070 — Darwin, C. R. to Abbot, F. E., 16 Nov [1871] Darwin explains …
  • Letter 12041 — Darwin, C. R. to Fordyce, John, 7 May 1879 In this letter marked “private”, …
  • Letter 12757 — Darwin, C. R. to Aveling, E. B., 13 Oct 1880 In this letter marked “private”, …
  • … Future Plans Letter 182 — Darwin, E. A. to Darwin, C. R., 18 Aug [1832] Darwin’s …
  • … regarding the Church. Letter 297 — Darwin, S. E. to Darwin, C. R., 12 Feb 1836 …
  • … and School Letter 1536 — Darwin, C. R. to Lubbock, J. W. (b), 11 Oct [1853] Darwin …
  • … R. to Down School Board, [Nov–Dec 1873] Darwin, Sir John Lubbock, Ellen Frances Lubbock, and S. …
  • … vicar of Down is concerned about the rumours regarding John Robinson [curate of Down]. He will seek …

Darwin in letters,1870: Human evolution

Summary

The year 1870 is aptly summarised by the brief entry Darwin made in his journal: ‘The whole of the year at work on the Descent of Man & Selection in relation to Sex’.  Descent was the culmination of over three decades of observations and reflections on…

Matches: 26 hits

  • … shall be a man again & not a horrid grinding machine’  ( letter to Charles Lyell, 25 December …
  • … anything which has happened to me for some weeks’  ( letter to Albert Günther, 13 January [1870] ) …
  • … corrections of style, the more grateful I shall be’  ( letter to H. E. Darwin, [8 February 1870] ) …
  • … who wd ever have thought that I shd. turn parson?’ ( letter to H. E. Darwin, [8 February 1870] ). …
  • … abt any thing so unimportant as the mind of man!’ ( letter from H. E. Darwin, [after 8 February …
  • … thro’ apes & savages at the moral sense of mankind’ ( letter to F. P. Cobbe, 23 March [1870?] …
  • … how metaphysics & physics form one great philosophy?’ ( letter from F. P. Cobbe, 28 March [1870 …
  • … in thanks for the drawing ( Correspondence  vol. 16, letter to J. D. Hooker, 26 November [1868] …
  • … patients, but it did not confirm Duchenne’s findings ( letter from James Crichton-Browne, 15 March …
  • … muscle’, he complained, ‘is the bane of existence!’ ( letter to William Ogle, 9 November 1870 ). …
  • … to their belief that all demons and spirits were white ( letter from W. W. Reade, 9 November 1870 …
  • … . . Could you make it scream without hurting it much?’ ( letter to A. D. Bartlett, 5 January [1870] …
  • … or crying badly; but I fear he will not succeed’ ( letter to James Crichton-Browne, 8 June [1870] …
  • … Lucy Wedgwood, who sent a sketch of a baby’s brows ( letter from L. C. Wedgwood, [5 May 1870] ). …
  • … is the inclination to finish my note on this subject’  ( letter from F. C. Donders, 17 May 1870 ). …
  • … the previous year (see  Correspondence  vol. 17, letter to A. R. Wallace, 14 April 1869 ). His …
  • … (in retrograde direction) naturalist’ (letter to A. R.Wallace, 26 January [1870]). …
  • … towards each other, though in one sense rivals’ ( letter to A. R. Wallace, 20 April [1870] ). …
  • … version of the theory of descent by natural selection in a letter to Darwin, prompting much anxiety …
  • … But who is to criticise them? No one but yourself’ ( letter from H. W. Bates, 20 May 1870 ). …
  • … me to be able to say that I  never  write reviews’ ( letter to H. W. Bates, [22 May 1870] ). …
  • … the mother and foetus during pregnancy. As a case in point, John Jenner Weir described the offspring …
  • … also discussed recent experiments by Louis Pasteur and John Tyndall that provided evidence for the …
  • … a memorandum. He asked his neighbour, the naturalist John Lubbock, who was now MP for Maidstone, to …
  • … reference to mankind of much importance ’ ( letter to John Lubbock, 17 July 1870 ). The motion to …
  • … attending college lectures for the time being ( letter to [E.W. Blore], [October 1870 or later] ). …

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: 23 hits

  • On 8 January , he told Hooker: ‘I will write a savage letter & that will do me some good, if I
  • … .’ Hooker also directed some of his anger toward John Murray, the publisher of the
  • to the EditorPoor Murray shuddered again & again’ ( letter from J. D. Hooker, 16 January
  • Instead of supporting her, he worked closely with Huxley and John Burdon Sanderson to draft an
  • Edward Emanuel Klein, a German histologist who worked with John Burdon Sanderson at the Brown Animal
  • in April 1874 (see Correspondence vol. 22, letters from E. E. Klein, 14 May 1874 and 10
  • offered to pay the costs for printing an additional 250 ( letter to John Murray, 3 May 1875 ). …
  • the book in the Academy , 24 July 1875, by Ellen Frances Lubbock: ‘in Utricularia they are
  • … & bless the day That ever you were born (letter from E. F. Lubbock, [after 2
  • further research on the effects of grafting by George John Romanes. A scientific friendship had
  • that the originally red half has become wholly white’ ( letter from G. J. Romanes, [before 4
  • pp. 18890). He drew attention to this discussion in a letter to George Rolleston, remarking on 2
  • Darwin wrote, ‘I beg ten thousand pardon & more’ ( letter to Francis Darwin, [ c . February
  • signed himself, ‘Your affect sonthe proofmaniac’ ( letter from Francis Darwin, 1 and 2 May [1875
  • in parish affairs (see Correspondence vol. 21). Lubbock tried to bring about a
  • also you intended to slight him.’ Darwin assured Lubbock that he never meant to show
  • 24 December , Emma wrote triumphantly to the former vicar, John Brodie Innes, that a new reading
  • both critical and reverential. On 16 July he received a letter from an advocate of womens
  • plants (Carus trans. 1876a). The German publisher E. Schweizerbartsche Verlagshandlung began to
  • her presentation copy of Insectivorous plants ( letter to D. F. Nevill, 15 July [1875] ). Such
  • Darwin had hoped to arrange for the meeting to take place at Lubbocks home, High Elms, so that he
  • of my house within the short time I can talk to anyone’ ( letter to John Lubbock, 3 May [1875] ). …
  • and had agreed to see him at Down with Thiselton-Dyer ( letter to W. T. Thiselton-Dyer, 7 July 1875

Darwin in letters, 1881: Old friends and new admirers

Summary

In May 1881, Darwin, one of the best-known celebrities in England if not the world, began writing about all the eminent men he had met. He embarked on this task, which formed an addition to his autobiography, because he had nothing else to do. He had…

Matches: 22 hits

  • … in Unconscious memory in November 1880 and in an abusive letter about Darwin in the St James’s …
  • … memory in Kosmos and sent Darwin a separate letter for publication in the Journal of Popular …
  • … publishers decided to print ‘500 more, making 2000’ ( letter to H. E. Litchfield, 4 January 1881 ) …
  • … the animal learnt from its own individual experience ( letter from G. J. Romanes, 7 March 1881 ). …
  • … whether observations of their behaviour were trustworthy ( letter to Francis Galton, 8 March [1881] …
  • … eager to send his draft to the printers without delay, asked John Murray, his publisher, to make an …
  • … about the sale of books being ‘a game of chance’ ( letter to R. F. Cooke, 12 April 1881 ). On 18 …
  • … laboratory. The Lake District may have reminded Darwin of John Ruskin, who lived there. Sending the …
  • … for more suggestions of such plants, especially annuals ( letter to W. T. Thiselton-Dyer, 21 March …
  • … supposed he would feel ‘less sulky in a day or two’ ( letter to R. F. Cooke, 29 July 1881 ). The …
  • … dead a work falls at this late period of the season’ ( letter from R. F. Cooke, 30 July 1881 ). …
  • … conversation with you’, a Swedish teacher told him ( letter from C. E. Södling, 14 October 1881 ), …
  • … add, however little, to the general stock of knowledge’ ( letter to E. W. Bok, 10 May 1881 ). …
  • … regular ‘bread-winners’ ( Correspondence vol. 30, letter to C. A. Kennard, 9 January 1882 ). …
  • … any future publication & to acknowledge any criticism’ ( letter to C. G. Semper, 19 July 1881 …
  • … view of the nature & capabilities of the Fuegians’ ( letter to W. P. Snow, 22 November 1881 ). …
  • … ). His scientific friends, however, did not agree. Both John Lubbock and Hooker asked for Darwin’s …
  • … about the year 1840(?) on all our minds’ ( letter to John Lubbock, [18 September 1881] ). When …
  • … on 27 May . Romanes assured Darwin that the artist, John Collier, Huxley’s son-in-law, was ‘such a …
  • … after expressing their wish to visit Darwin ( letter from E. B. Aveling, 27 September [1881] ). …
  • … not be disappointed if the sale is small’ ( letter to R. F. Cooke, 5 October 1881 ). The …
  • … Darwin told his old Cambridge University friend John Price on 27 December . As Darwin rejoiced in …

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: 17 hits

  • … of variation in animals in the different isl ds  of E Indian Archipelago— [DAR *119: 6v.] …
  • … [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 …
  • … The Emigrant, Head [F. B. Head 1846] St. John’s Highlands [C. W. G. Saint John 1846] …
  • … M rs  Fry’s Life [Fry 1847] Horace Walpoles letter to C t . of Ossory [Walpole 1848] …
  • … B.M. 6. 6. Black Edin. Longman [Ramsay 1848] St. John’s Nat. Hist. of Sutherlanshire, Murray …
  • … Liebigs Lectures on Chemistry [Liebig 1851]. Sir John Davies. China during the War and Peace …
  • … Asiatic Society ]—contains very little Macleay’s letter to D r  Fleming [Macleay 1830] …
  • … d . Series. vol 3. p. 1 to 312 30 th  Colquhoun (John) The Moor & the Loch [Colquhoun …
  • … Buffon [Milne-Edwards 1834–40]. March 5 th  St. John’s Highlands [Saint John 1846] 8 …
  • … Tone Autobiography [Tone 1826] very amusing March 10 John Galt Autobiography [Galt 1833] poor …
  • … 1848] Madam Malguet [Torrens] 1848] —— Lives of John & Alex. Belthune [?Bethune 1840 and …
  • … Ireland [Thompson 1849–56]. Vol. I. II & 3 May. St. John’s Tour in Sutherlandshire [Saint …
  • … 171] Pagets Travels in Hungary & Transylvania [John Paget 1839]— account of Dogs like …
  • … [Heer 1854].— Hooker has it.— Very important Hookers letter Jan. 1859 Yules Ava [Yule 1858] …
  • … of the material from these portfolios is in DAR 205, the letter from William Edward Shuckard to …
  • … by Richard Owen.  Vol. 4 of  The works of John Hunter, F.R.S. with notes . Edited by James F. …

Darwin in letters, 1880: Sensitivity and worms

Summary

‘My heart & soul care for worms & nothing else in this world,’ Darwin wrote to his old Shrewsbury friend Henry Johnson on 14 November 1880. Darwin became fully devoted to earthworms in the spring of the year, just after finishing the manuscript of…

Matches: 20 hits

  • … in zoology. New studies of animal instincts by George John Romanes drew upon Darwin’s early …
  • … my grandfather’s character is of much value to me’ ( letter to C. H. Tindal, 5 January 1880 ). …
  • … have influenced the whole Kingdom, & even the world’ ( letter from J. L. Chester, 3 March 1880 …
  • … delighted to find an ordinary mortal who could laugh’ ( letter from W. E. Darwin to Charles and …
  • … much powder & shot’ ( Correspondence vol. 27, letter from Ernst Krause, 7 June 1879 , and …
  • … modified; but now I much regret that I did not do so’ ( letter to Samuel Butler, 3 January 1880 ). …
  • … and ‘decided on laying the matter before the public’ ( letter from Samuel Butler, 21 January 1880 …
  • … and uncertain about what to do. He drafted two versions of a letter to the Athen æum , sending …
  • … in which he will have the last word’, she warned ( letter from H. E. Litchfield, [1 February 1880] …
  • … him & given him Darwinophobia? It is a horrid disease’ ( letter from T. H. Huxley, 3 February …
  • … squashing the ‘mosquito inflated to an elephant’ ( letter from Ernst Krause, 9 December 1880 ). …
  • … inches of soil as a protection against enemies.’ ‘Your letter … made me open my eyes’, Gray replied …
  • … his original description. Darwin was puzzled: ‘If my letter opened your eyes, yours has opened mine …
  • … to the same species, should behave so differently.’ ( Letter to Asa Gray, 17 February 1880 .) But …
  • … is the profit for Author or publisher?’ ( letter from R. F. Cooke, 20 July 1880 ). ‘I must take …
  • … science, I must now lose some for science’ ( letter to R. F. Cooke, 21 July 1880 ). The worries …
  • … corresponding structural differentiations’ ( letter from F. M. Balfour, [22 November 1880] ). …
  • … aided in any way direct attacks on religion’ ( letter to E. B. Aveling, 13 October 1880 ). Finally …
  • … of Epping Forest’. In October, Darwin had discussions with John Lubbock and Huxley and was …
  • … the year’s end, a Christmas card from another old friend, John Maurice Herbert, inspired happy …

Discussion Questions and Essay Questions

Summary

There are a wide range of possibilities for opening discussion and essay writing on Darwin’s correspondence.  We have provided a set of sample discussion questions and essay questions, each of which focuses on a particular topic or correspondent in depth.…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … people? What sort of things could one say in a letter that could not be said in print, and …
  • … readers draw from Darwin’s theories?[Mary Boole (1864), F. E. Abbot (1871-4), John Fordyce (1879), …
  • … What was Darwin’s influence on experimental practice? [John Scott and sexual dimorphism (1862), …

Race, Civilization, and Progress

Summary

Darwin's first reflections on human progress were prompted by his experiences in the slave-owning colony of Brazil, and by his encounters with the Yahgan peoples of Tierra del Fuego. Harsh conditions, privation, poor climate, bondage and servitude,…

Matches: 16 hits

  • … he had witnessed man in his most "primitive wildness" ( letter to Henslow, 11 April 1833 …
  • … sent to his mentor, the professor of botany at Cambridge, John Stevens Henslow. Letter
  • … 1833 which took effect in the following year. Letter 206 : Darwin to Darwin, E. C., 22 …
  • … of the polygenist theory of human descent. Letter 4933 : Farrar, F. W. to Darwin, …
  • … about the state of civilization of the natives. Letter 5617 , Darwin to Weale, J. P. M …
  • … wonderful fact in the progress of civilization" Letter 5722 , Weale, J. P. M. to …
  • … of Species , Darwin discussed his views on progress in a letter to Charles Lyell, insisting that …
  • … of life" ( Origin , 6 th ed, p. 98). Letter 2503 : Darwin, C. R. to Lyell, C …
  • … not profit it, there would be no advance.— " Letter 6728 : from Charles Lyell, 5 …
  • … but may guide the forces & laws of Nature." Letter 6866 : From Federico Delpino …
  • … in this inner principle, inborn in all things." Letter 8658 : to Alpheus Hyatt, 4 …
  • … Wallace, and the philosopher William Graham. Letter 2503 : Darwin, C. R. to Lyell, C., …
  • … the less intellectual races being exterminated." Letter 3439 : Darwin to Kingsley, …
  • … race, viewed as a unit, will have risen in rank." Letter 4510 : Darwin to Wallace, …
  • … entirely on intellectual & moral qualities. Letter 13230 : Darwin to Graham, …
  • … Primary Charles Darwin, Notebooks, B 18-29; E 95-7 [ available at Darwinonline ] …

Darwin and vivisection

Summary

Darwin played an important role in the controversy over vivisection that broke out in late 1874. Public debate was sparked when the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals brought an unsuccessful prosecution against a French physiologist who…

Matches: 22 hits

  • … me) attack on Virchow for experimenting on the Trichinae’ (letter to H. E. Litchfield, 4 January …
  • … progress of physiology. He reiterated these concerns in a letter to Thomas Henry Huxley ten days …
  • … into close contact with England’s leading physiologists, John Scott Burdon Sanderson, Thomas Lauder …
  • … I love with all my heart’ ( Correspondence vol. 19, letter to ?, 19 May [1871] ). As a …
  • … farmers and their staff (see Correspondence vol. 14, letter to a local landowner, [1866?] ). …
  • … by the prospect of animals suffering for science. In a letter to E. Ray Lankester, he wrote: ‘You …
  • … I shall not sleep to-night’ ( Correspondence vol. 19, letter to E. R. Lankester, 22 March [1871 …
  • … was a sensitive subject within Darwin’s family. In his letter of 14 January 1875 to Huxley, …
  • … ones (men of course) or I might get one or two’ (letter from Emma Darwin to F. P. Cobbe, 14 …
  • … to serve as the basis for a petition, and gave it to Huxley (letter from J. S. Burdon Sanderson, …
  • … with Huxley, who produced a new sketch for a petition (letter from T. H. Huxley, [4 April 1875] ) …
  • … who drafted a memorial, sending it to Darwin on 7 April (letter from J. S. Burdon Sanderson, 7 …
  • … in order to gather signatures. More alterations were made (letter from J. S. Burdon Sanderson, 10 …
  • … had already been prepared for the House of Lords (see letter to J. S. Burdon Sanderson, [11 April …
  • … a sketch that was approved by Huxley, Burdon Sanderson, and John Simon, a London pathologist and …
  • … his approval as president of the Royal Society of London (letter to J. D. Hooker, 14 April [1875] …
  • … his counsel: ‘we wd do whatever else you think best’ (letter to E. H. Stanley, 15 April 1875 ). …
  • … alternative title and preamble, which had been suggested by John Lubbock:    A Bill entitled …
  • … Sanderson both expressed their dismay at this alteration (letter from T. H. Huxley, 19 May 1875 , …
  • … version, and that only minor corrections had been made (letter to Lyon Playfair, 26 May 1875 , …
  • … the only one before Parliament. On 5 May, Lord Hartismere (John Major Henniker-Major) had submitted …
  • … and expertise. It included Huxley, a professor of surgery, John Erichsen, and several critics of …