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Darwin Correspondence Project

From J. D. Hooker   24 May 1867


May 24/67

Dear Darwin

I do not go to Paris till next Saty or Sunday (tomorrow week)1   I am so glad that Barkly’s letter pleased you—2 I always feel a happier & a better man when I have added a mite to your knowledge.

I do not share your objection to continental extension because you must extend it to all Islands in every ocean— It was the old objection to Lyellism that it must be applied to the most horrid convulsions,— the highest Mountains & so forth. I forget how you account for the chalk in the middle of Great continents except by deep ocean there— & the Limestone fossils at 19000 ft in the Himalaya surely show a much greater continental change since the Silurian than you admit.3

Do not break your heart over your book whatever you do.4

My friend Hodgson, who has elected to live in a state of benighted ignorance saw somewhere a request of Agassiz for information on Domesticated animals, & asked me to give the accompanying (sent by post) to him in Paris!.— H. does not know that Agassiz is in America!—& I have told him that it is better in your hands.5

I shall not fail to come at Gooseberry season6

Ever Yr aff | J D Hooker


Hooker refers to 1 or 2 June 1867. He had told CD that he would be returning to Paris at the end of May (see letter from J. D. Hooker, 17 May 1867 and n. 2).
The reference is to Henry Barkly. See enclosure to letter from J. D. Hooker, 17 May 1867, and letter to J. D. Hooker, [21 May 1867].
Hooker refers to Variation. See letter to J. D. Hooker, [21 May 1867].
Hooker and Brian Houghton Hodgson had met in Darjeeling, India, in 1848 (R. Desmond 1999, pp. 107–8). The enclosure has not been identified, but see the letter to J. D. Hooker, 26 [May 1867] and n. 2. Louis Agassiz emigrated from Switzerland to the United States in 1846 (DAB). The request for information on domesticated animals has not been identified.
Hooker’s visit to Down during the gooseberry season was something of a tradition. See, for example, Correspondence vol. 13, letter from J. D. Hooker, [after 17 June 1865].


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

DAB: Dictionary of American biography. Under the auspices of the American Council of Learned Societies. 20 vols., index, and 10 supplements. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons; Simon & Schuster Macmillan. London: Oxford University Press; Humphrey Milford. 1928–95.

Desmond, Ray. 1999. Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker, traveller and plant collector. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Antique Collectors’ Club with the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.


Does not share CD’s objection to continental extension, i.e., that it must be extended to every island in every ocean.

Sends paper on domesticated animals by Brian Hodgson [J. Asiat. Soc. Bengal 16 (1847): 1003–26].

Letter details

Letter no.
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 102: 165–6
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 5548,” accessed on 21 October 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 15