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To T. C. Eyton   9 December [1855]

Summary

Vexed he cannot find head of [Chinese] dog.

First took up skeletonising to see how much young pigeons and poultry differed from the old.

Wishes to ascertain differences in skeletons of pigeons, poultry, covey birds, and rabbits. William Yarrell has shown CD breastbones. W. B. Tegetmeier has shown him skulls of fowls.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Thomas Campbell Eyton
Date:  9 Dec [1855]
Classmark:  American Philosophical Society (Mss.B.D25.117)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1793

Matches: 2 hits

  • … of the manuscript of Variation in 1867. The work was published in January 1868. …
  • … Osteologia Avium in 1858 and the second in 1867. CD’s copy is in the Darwin Library–Down. …

To Edgar Leopold Layard   9 December 1855

Summary

Is collecting facts for Variation; would be grateful for skins of local [Cape of Good Hope] breeds of pigeons, ducks, and poultry.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Edgar Leopold Layard
Date:  9 Dec 1855
Classmark:  Auckland Public Library (Grey collection GL D8 (3))
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1794

Matches: 1 hit

  • … the publication of The birds of South Africa in 1867. William Henry Benson had described …

From Edward Blyth   22–3 August 1855

Summary

Gives extracts from a letter by Thomas Hutton.

Rabbits are kept (generally by Europeans) in the NW. provinces and breed freely. Canaries are not well adapted to the climate. Reports on domestic cats and pigeons of the area. EB gives references to further information on cats, pigeons, and silkworms.

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

Author:  Edward Blyth
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  22–3 Aug 1855
Classmark:  DAR 98: A79–A84
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1746

Matches: 1 hit

  • … History Museum Tring, donated by CD in 1867 (NHMUK 1868.2.19.59). Information added …

From Edward Blyth   4 August 1855

Summary

Sends a skeleton of a Bengal jungle cock.

Has never heard of trained otters breeding in captivity.

Introduced domestic rabbits are confined to the ports of India.

Canaries and other tame finches and thrushes brought into India do not breed well.

Origin of the domestic canary. Tendency of domesticated birds to produce "top-knot" varieties.

The tame geese of lower Bengal are hybrids; those of upper Bengal are said to be pure Anser cygnoides.

Wild Anser cinereus occur in flocks in the cold season.

Discusses at length different breeds of domestic cats and possible wild progenitors. Wild and domestic cats occasionally interbreed. The Angora variety breeds freely with the common Bengal cat and all stages of intermediates can be found.

Believes pigeons have been bred in India since remote antiquity.

Discusses whether mankind is divided into races or distinct species.

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

Author:  Edward Blyth
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  4 Aug 1855
Classmark:  DAR 98: A69–A78
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1735

Matches: 1 hit

  • … History Museum Tring, donated by CD in 1867 (NHMUK 1868.2.19.59). Information added …
Document type
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Date
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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: 30 hits

  • …   Charles Darwin’s major achievement in 1867 was the completion of his large work,  The …
  • … publisher in the final week of 1866. It would take all of 1867 to correct proofs, and just when …
  • … becomes vividly apparent in his work on expression in 1867, as he continued to circulate a list of …
  • … transmutation theory. Three important new correspondents in 1867 were Hermann Müller and Anton Dohrn …
  • … the New Year’s greeting, ‘may you be eupeptic through 1867 & your friends & the world in …
  • … publisher, John Murray, he wrote to Murray on 3 January 1867 , ‘I cannot tell you how sorry I am …
  • … for selling a Book’ ( letter to John Murray, 31 January [1867] ). A week later, Darwin had …
  • … the additional chapter. In a letter written on 8 February [1867] to his close friend, Joseph …
  • … Darwin’s time. The first proof-sheets arrived on 1 March 1867 and the tedious work of correction …
  • … . In a letter to his son William dated 27 [March 1867] , he admitted, ‘I fear the book is by no …
  • … papers with his first letter to Darwin of 15 March 1867 , although he described some of Alexander …
  • … told his publisher, John Murray, in a letter of 4 April [1867] , not to send stereotypes of the …
  • … had received other offers, notably one from Vogt in April 1867, to translate the new work. Carus had …
  • … will be published’ ( letter from J. V. Carus, 5 April 1867 ). This hint of uncertainty caused …
  • … to give up the task’ ( letter to Carl Vogt, 12 April [1867] ). Darwin need not have worried …
  • … to the German public ( letter from J. V. Carus, 15 April 1867 ). Darwin may not have fully …
  • … in preference to you’ ( letter to J. V. Carus, 18 April [1867] ). Darwin was not disappointed in …
  • … the ‘wonderful discovery’ to Darwin on 14 March 1867 . Then, in April, Robert Trail wrote from …
  • … in a mottled hybrid ( letter from Robert Trail, 5 April 1867 ). Darwin told his American friend …
  • … physiological fact’ ( letter to Asa Gray, 15 April [1867] ). Although he did not succeed in …
  • … step in Biology’ ( letter to Charles Lyell, 22 August [1867] ). Darwin’s insecurity persisted, …
  • … ferocity’ ( letter to J. D. Hooker, 17 November [1867] ). Even when the corrections were …
  • … to be introduced’ ( letter to W. S. Dallas, 8 November [1867] ). Dallas resisted the temptation to …
  • … as I could wish’ (letter from W. S. Dallas, 20 November 1867). Dallas, like Carus, alerted Darwin to …
  • … for information on Fuegian expressions. On 11 January 1867, Sulivan replied , enclosing belated …
  • … 27 years old In a letter of 22 February [1867] to Fritz Müller in Brazil, in which …
  • … Russel Wallace, who suggested in his response of 11 March [1867] that Darwin send his queries to …
  • … ( letter to A. R. Wallace, [12–17] March [1867] ). Darwin’s doggedness in pursuing answers to his …
  • … so do not want any more’ ( letter to Asa Gray, 15 April [1867] ). Nevertheless, at some point …
  • … in  Notes and Queries on China and Japan , 31 August 1867. Another version, possibly derived from …

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: 27 hits

  • … expression. A number of handwritten copies were sent out in 1867 (see, for example, letter to …
  • … Barber, Mary E. [after Feb 1867] [Grahamstown, Cape …
  • … Bowker, J.H. [10 Dec 1867] [Cape of Good Hope (South …
  • … Bowman, William 5 Aug 1867 5 Clifford St, London, …
  • … Darwin, Francis 20 June 1867 Unknown? …
  • … Erskine, H. N. B. 1 Nov 1867 [Ahmednuggur, Bombay, …
  • … Gaika, Christian 7 July 1867 Bedford [Cape of Good …
  • … Geach, F.F. June 1867 Johore, Malaysia …
  • … Gibbs, George 31 March 1867 Smithsonian Institution, …
  • … Gray, Asa 26 March 1867 Cambridge, Massachusetts, …
  • … Haast, J.F.J. von 12 May - 2 June 1867 Christchurch, …
  • … Haast, J.F.J. von 4 Dec 1867 Christchurch, New …
  • … Hagenauer, F.A. [12 Sept 1867] Lake Wellington, …
  • … Huxley, H.A. 22 Mar [1867] Abbey Place, London, …
  • … Kempson, L.F. 20 June 1867 Penmaenmawr, Conway, …
  • … Lubbock, E.F. [1867-8?] Lombard Street, London? …
  • … Muller, Fritz 22 Feb [1867] Down, Kent, England …
  • … Paget, James 9 July 1867 1 Harewood Place, Hanover …
  • … Rothrock, J.T. 31 March 1867 McVeytown [Pennsylvania …
  • … Stack, James West 4 Dec 1867 Christchurch, New …
  • … Sulivan, B.J. 11 Jan 1867 Bournemouth, England …
  • … Sutton, Seth 8 Aug 1867 Zoological Gardens, Regents …
  • … Swinhoe, Robert 5 Aug 1867 Amoy, China …
  • … Wallace, A. R. 2 March [1867] 9 St. Mark’s Crescent, …
  • … Wallace, A. R. 11 March [1867] 9 St. Mark’s Crescent …
  • … Weale, J.P.M. 7 July 1867 Bedford, Cape of Good Hope …
  • … Weale, J.P.M. [10 Dec 1867] Bedford, Cape of Good …

John Lubbock

Summary

John Lubbock was eight years old when the Darwins moved into the neighbouring property of Down House, Down, Kent; the total of one hundred and seventy surviving letters he went on to exchange with Darwin is a large number considering that the two men lived…

Matches: 2 hits

  • … Sunday to Mahomet.   ( to John Lubbock, 26 March [1867] ) The most striking …
  • … 'not a little in the dark' ( to John Lubbock, 26 March [1867] ). Trouble with the …

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: 7 hits

  • … Letter 5745 - Barber, M. E. to Darwin, [after February 1867] Mary Barber responds to …
  • … Letter 7223 - Darwin to Wedgwood, L. C., [8 June 1867 - 72] Darwin asks his niece, …
  • … Letter 5602 - Sutton, S. to Darwin, [8 August 1867] Sutton, the keeper of the …
  • … 5705 - Haast, J. F. J. von to Darwin, [4 December 1867] Explorer and geologist Haast …
  • … Letter 5585  - Darwin to Darwin, H. E., [26 July 1867] Darwin praises Henrietta’s …
  • … Letter 5403  - Darwin to Carus,  J. V.  [17 February 1867] Darwin thanks Carus for his …
  • … 5410  - Darwin to Muller, J. F. T., [22 February 1867] Darwin thanks Muller for …

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: 1 hits

  • … Letter 5605: Darwin, C. R. to Müller, J. F. T., 15 Aug [1867] Darwin asks Fritz Müller, a …

Edward Lumb

Summary

Edward Lumb was born in Yorkshire. According to the memoirs of his daughter Anne, Lady Macdonell, he travelled to Buenos Aires aged sixteen with his merchant uncle, Charles Poynton, and after some fortunate enterprises set up in business there. In 1833…

Matches: 2 hits

  • … still at Buenos Aires, or even still alive. However, in 1867 Darwin’s son, William, went to the …
  • … persuaded her husband to go back to Buenos Aires in October 1867. However, they had eventually …

A tale of two bees

Summary

Darwinian evolution theory fundamentally changed the way we understand the environment and even led to the coining of the word 'ecology'. Darwin was fascinated by bees: he devised experiments to study the comb-building technique of honey bees and…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … much ahead of his time when, in a letter to Darwin in 1867 , he commented on Edward Wilson’s plan …

Women as a scientific audience

Summary

Target audience? | Female readership | Reading Variation Darwin's letters, in particular those exchanged with his editors and publisher, reveal a lot about his intended audience. Regardless of whether or not women were deliberately targeted as a…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … Letter 7312 - Darwin to Darwin, F., [30 August 1867 - 70] Darwin asks his son, …
  • … Letter 5391 - Becker, L. E. to Darwin, [6 February 1867] Lydia Becker thanks Darwin …
  • … Letter 5712 - Dallas, W. S. to Darwin, [8 December 1867] Translator and author …

Sexual selection

Summary

Although natural selection could explain the differences between species, Darwin realised that (other than in the reproductive organs themselves) it could not explain the often marked differences between the males and females of the same species.  So what…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … Variation under domestication,  neared completion in 1867, that he systematically sought more …
  • … Typical is his query to Fritz Müller in  February 1867 : Do you know of any lowly …
  • … as an argument in favour of Divine creation (Campbell  1867, pp. 203–4). Brent gave it as his …

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: 6 hits

  • … Letter 5457 — Müller, H. L. H. to Darwin, C. R., 23 Mar 1867 Müller explains how Origin …
  • … 5471 — Darwin, C. R. to Müller, H. L. H., 29 Mar [1867] Darwin learns that German botanist …
  • … Letter 5481 — Müller, H. L. H. to Darwin, C. R., 1 Apr [1867] Müller thanks Darwin for the …
  • … Letter 5657 — Müller, H. L. H. to Darwin, C. R., 23 Oct 1867 Müller thanks Darwin for the …
  • … Letter 5585 — Darwin, C. R. to Darwin, H. E., 26 July [1867] Darwin writes to his daughter …
  • … Letter 5745 — Barber, M. E. to Darwin, C. R., [after Feb 1867] In this letter, naturalist, …

Scientific Practice

Summary

Specialism|Experiment|Microscopes|Collecting|Theory Letter writing is often seen as a part of scientific communication, rather than as integral to knowledge making. This section shows how correspondence could help to shape the practice of science, from…

Matches: 3 hits

  • … Letter 5429 — Müller, J. F. T. to Darwin, C. R., 4 Mar 1867 Müller reports observations on …
  • … Letter 5480 — Müller, J. F. T. to Darwin, C. R., 1 Apr 1867 Müller cites cases of difference …
  • … 5551 — Darwin, C. R. to Müller, J. F. T., 26 May [1867] Darwin thanks Müller for information …

Referencing women’s work

Summary

Darwin's correspondence shows that women made significant contributions to Darwin's work, but whether and how they were acknowledged in print involved complex considerations of social standing, professional standing, and personal preference.…

Matches: 2 hits

  • … Letter 7060 - Wedgwood, F. J. to Darwin, [1867 - 72] Darwin’s niece, Frances, …
  • … Letter 7223 - Darwin to Wedgwood, L. C., [9 June 1867 - 72] Darwin asks his niece to …

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

  • … 5500 — Darwin, C. R. to Haeckel, E. P. A., 12 Apr [1867] Darwin is sympathetic to Haeckel’s …
  • … Letter 5533 — Haeckel, E. P. A. to Darwin, C. R., 12 May 1867 Haeckel thanks Darwin for the …
  • … 5544 — Darwin, C. R. to Haeckel, E. P. A., 21 May [1867] Darwin discusses his previous …

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: 2 hits

  • … Letter 5617 , Darwin to Weale, J. P. M., 27 August [1867] "You have been extremely …
  • … Letter 5722 , Weale, J. P. M. to Darwin, [10 December 1867] "You speak sanguinely …

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: 2 hits

  • … Letter 5565 — Kingsley, Charles to Darwin, C. R., 6 June 1867 Clergyman Charles Kingsley …
  • … 5648 — Darwin, C. R. to Wallace, A. R., 12–13 Oct [1867] Darwin thinks naturalist A. R. …

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: 1 hits

  • … A GRAY 15 AUGUST 1868 177  TO A GRAY 15 APRIL 1867 178  C DARWIN TO JD …

Orchids

Summary

Sources|Discussion Questions|Experiment A project to follow On the Origin of Species Darwin began to observe English orchids and collect specimens from abroad in the years immediately following the publication of On the Origin of Species. Examining…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … 5637 - Alfred Russel Wallace to Charles Darwin 1 October 1867 Alfred Russell Wallace, a …

Dining at Down House

Summary

Sources|Discussion Questions|Experiment Dining, Digestion, and Darwin's Domestic Life While Darwin is best remembered for his scientific accomplishments, he greatly valued and was strongly influenced by his domestic life. Darwin's…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … Emma Darwin to Henrietta Darwin, [14 April 1867] Emma debates the wisdom of making a visit to …

Darwin in public and private

Summary

Extracts from Darwin's published works, in particular Descent of man, and selected letters, explore Darwin's views on the operation of sexual selection in humans, and both his publicly and privately expressed views on its practical implications…

Matches: 1 hits

  • … Letter 5670f - Darwin to Kingsley, C., [6 November 1867] Darwin discusses ‘rudiments’ …

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

  • … and sending Darwin a copy of the article. In early spring 1867, Darwin initiated a correspondence …
  • … Darwin  replied encouragingly  and in the summer of 1867, Müller began working on fertilisation of …
  • … preventing unwanted visitors from gaining access. In October 1867, Müller sent Darwin a letter …
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