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From Edward Blyth   [8 November 1855]


History of the rose in India.

Looks forward to reading what Hooker and Thompson say on species and varieties in their Flora Indica [1855].

Domestication of the turkey in America. The Peruvians had domestic dogs. W. W. Robinson of Assam reports that otters are extensively trained for fishing but cormorants never are. Gives Robinson’s comments on local domestic geese, rabbits, and cats.

EB has skins of jungle fowl from different localities to send.

Author:  Edward Blyth
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  [8 Nov 1855]
Classmark:  DAR 98: A108–A109
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1776

Matches: 1 hit

  • … Kriegsschlupp Predpriaetië in den Jahren 1823–1826. 5 pts in 1 vol. Berlin. Prescott, …

From Edward Blyth   7 September [1855]


Comments on the ease with which different species of Felis can be tamed.

Asian species of wild cattle.

Variation in colour of jackals.

Discusses the difficulties of differentiating between varieties and species. EB recommends Herman Schlegel’s definition of species [in Essay on the physiognomy of serpents, trans. T. S. Traill (1843)]. Problems of defining species of wolves and squirrels. Pigeons and doves afford an illustration of "clusters of species, varieties, or races". Various pigeons have local species in different parts of India and Burma, some of which interbreed where their ranges cross; as do the local species of Coracias [see Natural selection, p. 259].

[CD’s notes are an abstract of this memorandum.]

Author:  Edward Blyth
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  7 Sept [1855]
Classmark:  DAR 98: A51–5
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1752

Matches: 1 hit

  • … sive descriptio animalium, quæ in itinere per Japoniam … annis 1823–1830. 5 vols. Leiden. …

From Edward Blyth   21 April 1855


Indigenous domestic animals of the New World.

Relationship of Newfoundland and Esquimo dogs to the wolf. Dogs like the Esquimo occur in Tibet and Siberia. Indian pariah dogs and jackals occasionally interbreed.

Describes domestic cats of India; reports cases of their interbreeding with wild cats. Wild cats are tamed for hunting.

Races of silkworm in India are crossed [see 1690].

Domesticated plants, fish, and birds of India.

Comments on local races and species of crows; it is impossible to trace a line of demarcation between races and species.

Variation in the ability of hybrids to propagate.

Indian cattle breeds; differences between Bos indicus and Bos taurus.

Is not satisfied that aboriginally wild species of horse and ass exist.

Believes all fancy breeds of pigeon originated in the East. Wild ancestors of pigeons, ducks, geese, and fowls. Interbreeding of wild species of pheasant.

[CD’s notes are an abstract of this letter.]

Author:  Edward Blyth
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  21 Apr 1855
Classmark:  DAR 98: A57–A68
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1670

Matches: 1 hit

  • … Polar Sea, in the years 1820, 1821, 1822 & 1823. 2d ed. [Translated by Elizabeth Juliana …

From Edward Blyth   [1–8 October 1855]


Notes on Lyell’s Principles, vol. 2.

EB does not believe in connecting links between genera; there is no tendency to gradation between groups of animals.

Does not believe shortage of food can directly produce any heritable effect on size.

Comments on significance of variations discussed by Lyell. Variation in dentition and coloration.

Behaviour of elephants and monkeys.

When varieties are crossed EB considers that the form of the offspring, whether intermediate or like one or other of the parents, depends upon how nearly related the parents are.

Thinks that in the struggle for existence hybrids, and varieties generally, must be expected to give way to the "beautiful & minute adaptation" of the pure types.

Colours of Indian birds.

Vitality of seeds.

Variation among palms.

Fauna of Malaysia and New Zealand. Ranges of bird species.

[Memorandum originally enclosed with 1760.]

Author:  Edward Blyth
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  [1–8 Oct 1855]
Classmark:  DAR 98: A37–A50
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1762

Matches: 1 hit

  • … Polar Sea, in the years 1820, 1821, 1822 & 1823. 2d ed. [Translated by Elizabeth Juliana …

From Edward Blyth   [before 25 March 1868]


Detailed notes on secondary sexual differences in various species of birds and mammals.

Author:  Edward Blyth
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  [before 25 Mar 1868]
Classmark:  DAR 83: 154–5, DAR 84.1: 131–3, DAR 48: A77, DAR 84.2: 187v
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-6048

Matches: 1 hit

  • … perching on trees; the name given by Vigors in 1823 to the second Order of Birds in his …
Document type
letter (5)
Blyth, Edward[X]
1855 (4)
1868 (1)
1823 in keywords
6 Items

Darwin’s student booklist


In October 1825 Charles Darwin and his older brother, Erasmus, went to study medicine in Edinburgh, where their father, Robert Waring Darwin, had trained as a doctor in the 1780’s. Erasmus had already graduated from Cambridge and was continuing his studies…

Matches: 8 hits

  • … Provenance: DAR 271.1: 5 Notes 1 Franklin 1823. 8 Vo: octavo. 2 …
  • … bound with Abernethy 1819a, Abernethy 1819b and Abernethy 1823. The volume has ‘Erasmus Darwin’ on …
  • … 1819a; CD perhaps refers to Abernethy 1819b and Abernethy 1823 (see n. 3). 10 White 1826. …
  • … used in Lister 1826 for younger sons. 17 Henry 1823. Volume 2 is in the Darwin Library–CUL …
  • … Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown. Abernethy, John. 1823.  Introductory lectures, exhibiting some …
  • … of a residence and travels in Colombia, during the years 1823 and 1824 . 2 vols. London: H. Colburn …
  • … of Natural History  33: 202–13. Franklin, John. 1823.  Narrative of a journey to the shores …
  • … 21, and 22 . London: John Murray. Henry, William. 1823.  The elements of experimental …

Darwin’s reading notebooks


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: 20 hits

  • … has various coloured maps by Copenhagen Botanists [?Schouw 1823] of range of plants. 13 …
  • … Flanders & Holland in 1817 [Neill, Hay, and Macdonald 1823] These three last books quoted in …
  • … Geneva— Mem. de la Soc. Genev. Tom II p. 29 [L. A. Necker 1823] read Lindleys Horticulture …
  • … 15 th ) 13 th . Minor poems of Milton [Milton 1823] & first 2 d 71  vol of …
  • … Tour by Deput. Caledon. Soc [Neill, Hay, and Macdonald] 1823] Ref at end Godwins answer to …
  • … 20 Franklins Narrative 1 st  Expedition [Franklin 1823] Oct 4 Drinkwater Siege of Gibraltar …
  • … 12 th  Necker. Mem. les Oiseaux de Geneve [L. A. Necker 1823] —— Owen on pearly Nautilus [R …
  • … [Sévigné 1801] Quentin Durward [W. Scott] 1823]. Veronica [Zschokke 1845b]. G. Gurney [Hook] …
  • … Physique, de Chimie, et de l’Histoire Naturelle  (1794–1823). 71  CD wrote “1 st ” …
  • … Majesté, La   Coquille, pendant les années   1822, 1823, 1824 et 1825 . 7 vols. Paris. …
  • … London. [Other eds.]  *119: 13v. Franklin, John. 1823.  Narrative of a journey to the …
  • … ——. 1830.  Neue Reise um die Welt, in den Jahren 1823 .   . . 1826 . 2 vols. Weimar.  119: 3a …
  • … . Paris. [Darwin Library.]  128: 4 Milton, John. 1823.  The minor poems of John Milton . …
  • … *119: 5v.; 119: 13b Necker, Louis Albert. 1823. Mémoire sur les oiseaux des  environs de …
  • … [Neill, Patrick, Hay, John, and Macdonald, James]. 1823.  Journal of a horticultural tour through …
  • … *128: 179; 128: 8 Schouw, Joakim Frederik. 1823.  Pflanzengeographische Atlas   zur …
  • …  London. [Other eds.]  119: 12b [——]. 1823.  Quentin Durward . 3 vols. London. [Other …
  • … Lamétherie and H. M. Ducrotay de Blainville. Paris. 1794–1823.  *119: 13v.; 119: 10a …
  • … la Société d’Histoire Naturelle de   Paris . Paris. 1823–34.  119: 19a Mémoires de l …
  • … Memoirs of the Board of Agriculture of New York . New York. 1823–6.  119: 19a; *128: 167 …

Alfred Russel Wallace


Wallace was a leading Victorian naturalist, with wide-ranging interests from biogeography and evolutionary theory to spiritualism and politics. He was born in 1823 in Usk, a small town in south-east Wales, and attended a grammar school in Hertford. At the…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … theory to spiritualism and politics. He was born in 1823 in Usk, a small town in south-east Wales, …

George Peacock


George Peacock was born 9 April 1791 in Denton near Darlington in Yorkshire. He was the son of a clergyman, the Rev. Thomas Peacock, curate of Denton for 50 years and school master. George was educated at Sedbergh School, Cumbria and Richmond School in…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … went on to become a fellow and then tutor of the college in 1823. During his time at Cambridge he …

Was Darwin an ecologist?


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: 1 hits

  • … parasitism, mutualism, aposematism or exaptation?’, pp. 182–3.  See the paper One of the …

Books on the Beagle


‘Considering the limited disposable space in so very small a ship, we contrived to carry more instruments and books than one would readily suppose could be stowed away in dry and secure places’. So wrote Captain FitzRoy in the Narrative (2: 18). CD, in his…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … from the latest   authorities.  London and Edinburgh, 1823. (Contemporary annotations by CD and …
  • … Meteorological essays and observations.  London, 1823. (DAR 30.1: 41). ‡ Daubeny, Charles …
  • …  20 vols., 1 vol.  Supplement.  6th ed. Edinburgh, 1823. (DAR 30.2: 198v.; 33: 254). § …