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Darwin Correspondence Project

To J. D. Hooker   [17 February 1847]1



My dear Hooker

I will answer your note seriatim.— The pamphlet you refer to, no doubt is Mackinnons (son of the M.P. who discusses Burial Grounds):2 Sulivan’s address is Stoke Devonport.3

I will bring FitzRoys Statement4 with me on Friday to Anniversary5 & give you it. We must contrive to sit together (for I assume you will be there) & have some talk: I shall not go to the dinner my stomach & soul abhors them.

What an astounding amount of work you have in hand: I do most earnestly beg you not to hurt yourself: do not think of my sketch;6 I shd never forgive myself if you look at it one minute before you have leisure & idle time: only when you recommence, oblige me by relooking over the marginal headings, so as to have the whole in view at once.

I am sorry to hear of Sir William:7 it is really curious the number of friends we have within this week heard of with similar sufferings. I had a very little one & have been & am suffering from boils in other parts, so that I am not absolutely certain I shall be able to be up on Friday or go to Shrewsbury8

Ever yours | C. Darwin


Dated by the relationship to the letter to J. D. Hooker, 8 [February 1847], and the reference to the anniversary meeting of the Geological Society (see n. 5, below).
Lauchlan Bellingham Mackinnon, second son of William Alexander Mackinnon, wrote an account of the Falkland Islands based on the six months he spent there in 1838–9 as first mate in H.M.S. Arrow under the command of Bartholomew James Sulivan (Mackinnon 1840). The pamphlet contains a general description of the islands, including some brief observations on natural history.
Sulivan had returned from his second survey of the Falkland Islands in June 1846.
Probably a reference to Robert FitzRoy’s pamphlet (FitzRoy 1841) defending his action in the violent controversy with William Sheppard in the run-up to parliamentary elections in County Durham (Mellersh 1968, pp. 184–91).
The anniversary meeting of the Geological Society, 19 February 1847.
CD’s essay of 1844 (see letter to J. D. Hooker, 8 [February 1847], n. 5).
William Jackson Hooker, Hooker’s father.
CD’s ‘Journal’ (Correspondence vol. 4, Appendix I) records that he left for Shrewsbury on 19 February. He may have stopped over in London for the Geological Society anniversary meeting.


Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 27 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

FitzRoy, Robert. 1841. Captain FitzRoy’s statement (of circumstances which led to a personal collision between Mr Sheppard and Captain FitzRoy). London.

Mackinnon, Lauchlan Bellingham. 1840. Some account of the Falkland Islands, from a six-months’ residence in 1838 and 1839. London.

Mellersh, Harold Edward Leslie. 1968. FitzRoy of the Beagle. London: Rupert Hart-Davis.


Asks JDH not to think of looking at his species sketch until he has leisure.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 114: 78
Physical description
4pp & C

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 1057,” accessed on 21 September 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 4