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Darwin Correspondence Project

From Emma Wedgwood   [3 December 1838]



It is very well I am coming to look after you my poor old man for it is quite evident that you are on the verge of insanity & we should have had to advertize you “Lost in the vicinity of Bloomsbury a tall thin gentleman &c &c quite harmless whoever will bring him back shall be handsomely rewarded. I am going off to Shrewsbury with Susan for two days so I have no more time to spend in these frivolities. I want to see the Dr very much & Charlotte will be there too so I could not resist going. I shall come back on Wednesday & on Thursday we set off by the half past nine train. It was very nice of you writing again so soon. I have been also reflecting that we have settled quite right to be in London there are many advantages that I have thought of which I will tell you at my leisure. With respect to your other dilemma I think there is no help for it but taking a house that suits when we can catch it. Are not houses taken generally from Chritsmas. It would be too dangerous to wait for the chance of its not being taken. FitzRoy Square looks nice in the map but they say the neighbourhood is bad. Frank desired me to tell you that he has not much hopes of finding any thing for Cuvington but he will be sure to keep him in mind. Charlotte desires her best love to you & to thank you for your letter which she tells me was the nicest possible one but I don’t believe a word of it. It is very well to make interest with the person of most importance in the family & nothing can be more handsome than Mrs Jones’s conduct to me with respect to servant’s tablecloths towels & sheets &c She will take no denial so that Susan will be spared the trouble of buying those articles. You need not mind any more about not mentioning my coming for after all Georgina1 is the only person that signifies & I dare say Robert & Erasmus will not be seeing her these few days & perhaps they could actually manage not to say any thing about it if they did see her. I was very sorry to see the death of the little Holland baby. The Dr will feel it very much as he is very fond of his babies.

I shall enjoy this sight of dear Charlotte of all things. We shall be at Euston Sqr at a quarter to 7. If you have nothing else to do you might walk up there but it does not signify as Fanny & I shall come in a fly the next morning in good time & rout you out. We must arrange matters so as to make the most of our time as I shall not stay long & do as much business as we can & besure you come to Notting Hill as much as ever you can. I shall be so glad to see you dearest Charles & if you can spend Sunday at Notting hill we may manage to have a quiet walk that day as we can do no business.

On second thoughts you had better not come & meet us at the station, we might be delayed or it may be horrid weather & you really would be of no use & it would only be the pleasure of seeing your face that evening instead of the next morning. What do you think of coming to breakfast at Notting Hill on Friday & settling our plans for the day.

N.B. You need never stop writing for want of room for I like crossed letters very much. If Susan had not been wanted at home just now she would have come up with me which would have been very pleasant. I have had a most affectionate letter from At Jessie & Sismondi. Her chief anxiety is for fear I should not dress myself smart enough, so that when you reproach me with extravagance I shall have an answer quite ready that it entirely from a sense of duty. Susan & Jessie are very sorry that they will not be present to egg me on sufficiently in buying my things, but they think Fanny H. will do nearly as well if properly primed. I suppose I am reckoned very meanspirited in the family.

Goodbye till Friday my dear Charles your affectionate Grandmother | Emma W.

Susan says she wd come up with pleasure in Jan. if wanted but as she is coming in Feb. I am sure with a little good advice we might manage without her.


Georgina Alderson, Emma’s cousin.


She agrees that London is the place to settle. She is eager to see him and full of plans.

Letter details

Letter no.
Emma Wedgwood/Emma Darwin
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 204: 153
Physical description
4pp †

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 449,” accessed on 4 December 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 2