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Darwin Correspondence Project

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Naevius (fl. 235–04 BCE)

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  • … Naevius fl. 235–04 BCE Italian epic poet and dramatist. Oxford Classical Dictionary 20 …
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Darwin’s queries on expression

Summary

When Darwin resumed systematic research on emotions around 1866, he began to collect observations more widely and composed a list of queries on human expression. A number of handwritten copies were sent out in 1867 (see, for example, letter to Fritz Muller…

Matches: 4 hits

  • … The Scottish botanist John Scott wrote from Calcutta, 4 May 1868 : “Shame is … expressed by an …
  • … Foster, Michael 4 June [1871] Trinity College, …
  • … Geach, F.F. 4 July 1868 Johore, Malaysia …
  • … Haast, J.F.J. von 4 Dec 1867 Christchurch, New …

Detecting Darwin

Summary

Who was Charles Darwin? What is he famous for? Why is he still important?

Matches: 1 hits

  • … Pupils act as Darwin detectives, exploring clues about Darwin’s life and work. No prior knowledge …

Darwin And Evolution

Summary

What is evolution? What did Darwin discover and how did he come to his conclusions?

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  • … Activities give an introduction to Charles Darwin and his theories of evolution. Specimens brought …

Darwin's Fantastical Voyage

Summary

Learn about Darwin's adventures on his epic journey.

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  • … These activities explore Darwin’s life changing voyage aboard HMS Beagle. Using letters home, …

Language: Interview with Gregory Radick

Summary

Darwin made a famous comment about parallels between changes in language and species change. Gregory Radick, Professor of History and Philosophy of Science at Leeds University, talks about the importance of the development of language to Darwin, what…

Matches: 2 hits

  • … Could you tell us a bit more about that? 4. How did you use Darwin’s …
  • … between him and us, however uncomfortable. 4. How did you use Darwin’s correspondence to re …

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: 6 hits

  • … improvement to Jones’s diet ( see letter to T. H. Huxley, 4 October [1865] ). It was not until …
  • … for the press in the autumn’ ( letter to John Murray, 4 April [1865] ). In early June, he wrote to …
  • … from the Linnean Society ( letter to [Richard Kippist], 4 June [1865] ). The paper was published …
  • … to high scientific account’ (A. Gray 1865–6, pp. 273-4). Darwin had also written to Gray on 19 …
  • … for him to read attentively ( see letter to J. D. Hooker, [4 June 1865] ). The fact that …
  • … do it if it ever can be done’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, [4 June 1865] ); the hard work of …

Teachers notes: Offer of a lifetime

Summary

The Offer of a Lifetime?  Activities for: English Key Stage 3 and 4 When Darwin was 22 he received an exciting and unique opportunity to join HMS Beagle. The voyage changed his life but the letters show how close he came to not going at all! …

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  • … Activities for: English Key Stage 3 and 4 When Darwin was 22 he received an exciting and …

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: 9 hits

  • … published in Paris (in 2 vols.), so long ago as 1839 4  [Pierquin de Gembloux 1839]. Said to …
  • … et anim: on sleep & movements of plants  £ 1 ..s  4. [Dutrochet 1837] Voyage aux …
  • … observations on increase & decrease of different diseases 4 to . 1801 [Heberden 1801] quoted …
  • … worth reading [Dampier 1697] Sportsman’s repository 4 to . [W. H. Scott 1820]— contains …
  • … Audubons Ornithol: Biography [Audubon 1831–9]— 4 Vols. well worth reading [DAR *119: 4v.] …
  • … 31 An analysis of British Ferns. G. W. Francis 4 s  [Francis 1837]— plates of every …
  • … of Rural Sports [Blaine 1840] (at Athenæum?) Book II Chapt. 4 on variation by  Blaine .— & on …
  • … Yak.— Steudel Botan. Nomenclature [Steudel 1821–4]. Synonym of every plant & country— …
  • … Paper on transmutation of shells [Haldeman 1843–4] already (1844) VI. vols. published Lib. …

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: 2 hits

  • … on the Trichinae’ (letter to H. E. Litchfield, 4 January [1875] ). Darwin also worried that any …
  • … a new sketch for a petition (letter from T. H. Huxley, [4 April 1875] ). This was evidently …

The Lyell–Lubbock dispute

Summary

In May 1865 a dispute arose between John Lubbock and Charles Lyell when Lubbock, in his book Prehistoric times, accused Lyell of plagiarism. The dispute caused great dismay among many of their mutual scientific friends, some of whom took immediate action…

Matches: 4 hits

  • … mammoth ( Correspondence vol. 8, letter to Charles Lyell, 4 May [1860] and n. 3; Hutchinson 1914, …
  • … partly inspired by the controversies associated with it. 4 One area of controversy centred …
  • … admiration for Lubbock’s book ( letter to J. D. Hooker, [4 June 1865] ). A week later he sent …
  • … of the situation was succinct. In his letter to Hooker of [4 June 1865] he warned that no one …

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: 4 hits

  • … of  Descent , he wrote to Philip Lutley Sclater on 4 January , ‘Heaven knows, whether the book …
  • … produce physiological changes ( letter from Michael Foster, 4 June [1871] ). Pangenesis …
  • … can hardly sit up, so no more’ ( letter to A. R. Wallace, 4 August [1871] ). On 23 September he …
  • … good as twice refined gold’ ( letter to H. E. Litchfield, 4 September [1871] ). The months …

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

  • … curs in London’ ( letter to W. T. Thiselton-Dyer, [4 February 1876] ). 'The heat of …
  • … as stemming a torrent with a reed’, he told Romanes on 4 June , but added, ‘Frank … who sputters …
  • … the previous year ( letter to G. H. Darwin, [after 4 September 1876] ). ...all sorts of …
  • … say is do not commit suicide’ ( letter to G. H. Darwin, [4 June 1876] ). By midsummer, Darwin …
  • … size of pollen grains & state of stigma’, he told Gray on 4 December. Darwin also adopted …

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: 2 hits

  • … except that of vigorous health… DARWIN:  4   My confounded stomach. GRAY: …
  • … OF ARTS AND SCIENCES, PROCEEDINGS XVII, 1882 4  C DARWIN TO JD HOOKER 10 MAY 1848 …

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: 5 hits

  • … He expressed his views to his daughter Henrietta on 4 January : ‘I wd gladly punish severely …
  • … eyes of one variety into another ( Variation 2d ed. 1: 420–4, 2: 360). Darwin had encouraged …
  • … become wholly white’ ( letter from G. J. Romanes, [before 4 November 1874] ).   Testing …
  • … am very glad indeed of your work,’ Darwin replied on 4 November , ‘though I cannot yet follow all …
  • … occasions and finally arranged a visit to Down House on 4 May, but was not content with just one …

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: 4 hits

  • … [1866] ). Darwin began riding the cob, Tommy, on 4 June 1866, and in a letter to his …
  • … before the season is over’ ( letter from John Lubbock, 4 August 1866 ). More predictably, however, …
  • … is known on the subject’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 3 and 4 August [1866] ). And on the next day: …
  • … he had sounded the charge’ ( letter from J. D. Hooker, [4 September 1866] ). 'Natural …

German poems presented to Darwin

Summary

Experiments in deepest reverence The following poems were enclosed with a photograph album sent as a birthday gift to Charles Darwin by his German and Austrian admirers (see letter from From Emil Rade, [before 16] February 1877). The poems were…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … “Es hebt ihn keiner, bis ich selbst ihn hebe!” 4 O schlauer Spruch! Wann hätte je der Gott …
  • … “You may not lift it, till I myself shall lift it!” 4 O what a wise saying! When did God …
  • … poem of the same name by Friedrich von Schiller. 4. This is a partial quotation from …

Fake Darwin: myths and misconceptions

Summary

Many myths have persisted about Darwin's life and work. Here are a few of the more pervasive ones, with full debunking below...

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  • … Many myths have persisted about Darwin's life and work. Here are a few of the more pervasive ones, …

Darwin in letters, 1847-1850: Microscopes and barnacles

Summary

Darwin's study of barnacles, begun in 1844, took him eight years to complete. The correspondence reveals how his interest in a species found during the Beagle voyage developed into an investigation of the comparative anatomy of other cirripedes and…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … write the chapter on geology ( letter to J. F. W. Herschel, 4 February [1848] ). Letters between …
  • … into a sessile, adult organism ( Correspondence vol. 4, Appendix II). One particular aspect of …
  • … affinities of the cirripedes ( Correspondence vol. 4, Appendix II). In some cases he felt he …

Interview with Tim Lewens

Summary

Dr Tim Lewens is a Lecturer in the Department of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Cambridge. He is the author of Organisms and artifacts (2004), which examines the language and arguments for design in biology and philosophy, and of…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … inherent in Darwin’s work. 4. The expanding scope of biology …

Suggested reading

Summary

  Contemporary writing Anon., The English matron: A practical manual for young wives, (London, 1846). Anon., The English gentlewoman: A practical manual for young ladies on their entrance to society, (Third edition, London, 1846). Becker, L. E.…

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  • … species : A b iography , (London, 2006),  chapter 4: Controversy , pp. 84 – 117.  …
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