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Darwin Correspondence Project

William Darwin Fox

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William Darwin Fox
William Darwin Fox
CUL DAR 250: 22
Cambridge University Library

Charles Darwin’s cousin, William Darwin Fox, was admitted to Christ’s College, Cambridge, in 1824, three years before Darwin; the two men became close friends. A keen amateur entomologist, Fox introduced Darwin, with whom he overlapped at Christ’s for six months, to his passion for beetles, and his own well established circle of friends, including John Stevens Henslow. Fox’s diary and accounts for 1824 to 1826, now in Christ’s College Old Library, provide a delightfully direct and vivid account of student life at the time. Fox became an Anglican clergyman, and from 1838 to 1873 was Rector of Delamere in Cheshire. Fox and Darwin corresponded throughout their lives exchanging accounts of their growing families interspersed with discussions of Darwin's work.  Fox was often asked for, and provided, information from his own observations of the natural world.