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Darwin Correspondence Project

From Susan Darwin   3–6 March 1833


March 3d. 1833.

Catherine who wrote last1 will have told you my very dear Charles how glad we were to have your last letter dated November, and now it is gone to Erasmus— We have also seen a letter Mr. Hughes wrote to the Haycocks & it was speaking so much about you & the great pleasure he had in seeing you, that it was almost as good as hearing from yourself— We shall all treasure this last letter from you, more than any others, as you say we must not expect to hear again for six or nine months, which appears an endless time looking forward.— I congratulate you on your luck in finding those curious remains of the Monster M— I think Geology far the most interesting subject one can imagine & now I have found a very easy way of learning a little smattering of it. The penny Magazines give a few pages (which the most foolish person can understand) in every Number on the subject.— I think this clever penny work has come out since you left England we all swear by it as it contains every kind of knowledge written so pleasantly with prints.

The race of Wedgwoods is fast encreasing & I must give you the Annual Register.—

Frank’s son & heir Master Godfrey was born on the 26th. of January, & the Hensleighs have got a little Daughter2 born the 6th. of Febry.— Uncle Jos has been attending Parliament now nearly a Month. We have not heard much about him except that he finds it fatiguing— His family go up to town after Easter when they will divide themselves between Charlotte & Hensleigh so will take no house in London.— The Radicals are getting so fierce & licentious in the Debates, that Papa gets more & more of a Tory every day.— This Government appears to be perfect for they let no abuses remain. Church Reform & Slavery will certainly be done this Session I shd. think.—3 In short by the time you come back from your surveying expedition so many changes will have taken place that I can’t imagine how you will ever learn them all for Newspapers 9 months old it wd. be impossible to read.—

I have been staying a great deal at Woodhouse lately to comfort poor Caroline who has no Sister now Emma being gone to stay with Sarah in London & Fanny & Mr Biddulph have taken a small nutshell for 5 months whilst Parliament sits.— Francis is still at home they want to get him into a foot Regiment but find great difficulty. he seems to go on very well with Mr Owen which is fortunate. Mr. Owen sometimes talks of packing him off to Canada but this is only a joke I suppose. They have heard fr. Arthur since he reached Madras. he wrote in great spirits & had gone through his first examination so well that they had augmented his salary.— They always talk and enquire much about you at Woodhouse & Mrs. Owen still keeps her opinion of Charles Darwin being the happiest person she knows.— Caroline Owen laughed much at recollecting your walks in the wood with Sarah: & a〈fter〉 abusing us all for being such a reserved family, sa〈id〉 at least “you were an exception for she believed there was no family secret you would not tell to Sarah in the wood”.— I am afraid this is all too true Master Charley.— I used to be surprised how you should like making such long visits at the Forest, but now I stay a fortnight at a time I find it much pleasanter, one becomes so completely one of the family.— It seems so odd to see them reduced to a party of four at Dinner. Sarah sent for yr direction the other day so I daresay you will find a letter on yr return.—

Charlotte Holland is married to Mr Isaac the 14th of this Month & Emma Wedgwood goes to the wedding.—

March 6th.

Captain Beaufort has very kindly written to tell us that if we send off this letter immediately to him it will catch the Buenos Ayres Mail & will most probably be the last news you will have for sometime I don’t quite understand how this can be—but as you will like to hear as lately as possible that we are all well I pack this off tho’ it is a mighty dull epistle

Dear old Charley I am afraid we shan’t see yr hand writing till September but at least we have the comfort of knowing that your long silence means no harm & is unavoidable.— Catherine & I are just come in from a long walk with the (future Mrs. Hope) alias Louisa Leighton4 they talk of going abroad after their marriage which will suit the Gentleman much better than the Lady I guess.—

Papa desires his most affectionate love to you    We all often talk about you & you are forgotten by nobody I assure you & I have nothing more to give but my best love & blessing | Dear old fellow yr affectionate Granny D.


Catherine’s letter of 8 February has not been found, though it was received by CD the following June (see letter to Catherine Darwin, 22 May – 14 July 1833).
Frances Julia Wedgwood.
Church reform, which was widely anticipated in 1832, was not instituted. Slavery had been abolished in England in 1772 and slave trade in the colonies in 1806. In August 1833 a law emancipating the slaves in the colonies was passed.
Louisa Leighton married Henry Hope, brother of Frederick William Hope.


Captain Beaufort has offered to get one more letter to CD before the long voyage around the Horn;

SD brings family news up to date.

Letter details

Letter no.
Susan Elizabeth Darwin
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 204: 99
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 200,” accessed on 23 September 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 1