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Darwin Correspondence Project

From Isabella Elinor Aylmer   18 November 1867

Havelock House | Shanklin | Isle of Wight

18 Nov. 1867—


As I am about to write for once a week a paper upon Chillingham and the “Wild Cattle”—for a picture of the latter, drawn by Mr. Bradley, I should feel very much obliged ⁠⟨⁠if⁠⟩⁠ you would have ⁠⟨⁠the⁠⟩⁠ great kindness to g⁠⟨⁠ive⁠⟩⁠ me the results ⁠⟨⁠of your⁠⟩⁠ examination into ⁠⟨⁠the⁠⟩⁠ character and original breed of these Cattle—1 Lord & Lady Tankerville2 mentioned you as an authority upon the subject and I should have written direct to her Ladyship, had I ⁠⟨⁠n⁠⟩⁠ot wished to ask your permission to ⁠⟨⁠in⁠⟩⁠sert your observations ⁠⟨⁠into⁠⟩⁠ my article—

Trusting you will kindly favour me with as early an answer as you can—I am Sir | yours faithfully | I. E. Aylmer


The article ‘The Chillingham Cattle’ appeared anonymously in Once a Week, 1 February 1868, pp. 98–101, with an illustration by Basil Bradley. The text included an extensive quotation of information provided by CD, which is very similar to the information on the Chillingham cattle in Variation 1: 81, 83–4, and 2: 119.
Charles Augustus Bennet, sixth earl of Tankerville, and Olivia Bennet.


Variation: The variation of animals and plants under domestication. By Charles Darwin. 2 vols. London: John Murray. 1868.


Writing article on Chillingham Park and its wild cattle; requests information on CD’s observations on their character and original breed. Was referred to CD by Lord and Lady Tankerville.

Letter details

Letter no.
Isabella Elinor Aylmer
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 159: 135
Physical description
3pp damaged

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 5681,” accessed on 16 October 2021,

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