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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Saba Holland   4 December [1854]1

Down Farnborough Kent

Dec 4th

Dear Lady Holland

I really hardly know how to thank you sufficiently for your most kind provisional present— I will try & be worthy of it— I will keep them [looking] as tidy as possible that if required, [they] may be returned looking truly fresh & new.—2

It shall not go out of my House except to Elizabeth Wedgwood, and, I am sure you will allow me to add my aunt Mrs. S. Wedgwood, who lives in this village, & who is the most scrupulous person in the world, as I think Sir Henry must know her well enough, to have perceived.3

Pray believe me, with | my sincerest thanks | Yours very truly obliged | Charles Darwin


The year is supplied by the sale catalogue, possibly from a postmark.
Possibly an advance copy of Holland’s two-volume memoir of her father, Sydney Smith (S. Holland 1855), which was published in 1855. S. Holland 1855 was one of the first titles CD recorded for 1855 in his reading notebook (Correspondence vol. 4, Appendix IV, 128: 11).
Sarah Elizabeth Wedgwood (Elizabeth) was Emma Darwin’s sister. Sarah Elizabeth Wedgwood (Sarah), CD and Emma’s aunt, lived at Petleys in Down. Henry Holland was Saba Holland’s husband; the Hollands were distantly related to the Wedgwoods.


Thanks for Lady Holland’s kind present. Will only lend it to his sister-in-law and his aunt.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Saba Holland
Sent from
Source of text
John Wilson (dealer) (19 January 2011)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 1610F,” accessed on 28 September 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 24 (Supplement)