skip to content

Darwin Correspondence Project

To Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg   20 April [1844]

Down near Bromley | Kent

April 20th.


I heard sometime since from Dr. Dieffenbach that you wished for any substances likely to contain infusoria from the Galapagos Islds & Tierra del Fuego.— I wrote to Dr. Dieffenbach for further particulars,1 but not having heard in reply, I will forward immediately a packet containing such substances.— It would give me lively pleasure if anything I could send, should be of the slightest service to you.— Every little packet is labelled outside; & as they need not be returned, if they are useless to you, they will cost you only the trouble of reading the labels.— Should you want any further information about any of the substances sent, I shall be most happy to supply all I can.—

Two of the bottles & the majority of the parcels are from Dr. Hooker naturalist in the Antarctic expedition (the son of Sir W. Hooker), whom I applied to for earth from the roots of my plants which he is describing,2 & besides such earth, he has sent earth, water & seaweeds from the Antarctic regions, in some of which when fresh, Infusoria were swarming— The seaweeds Dr. Hooker intends describing himself.—

I hope these Antarctic specimens will be useful to you.—

I can hardly venture to ask you to take the trouble, but shd any of these specimens prove of much interest, it would greatly gratify Dr. Hooker & myself to hear of their safe arrival to you.—

With the greatest respect | Sir | Your faithful & obliged servant | Charles Darwin

P.S. M. Baillière,3 the Bookseller, has undertaken to send the Parcel by Steam-boat, without charge to you, directed to the University, Berlin.


See letters to J. D. Hooker, [27 January 1844] and [3–17 February 1844].
Hippolyte Baillière, bookseller and publisher in London who specialised in French medical and scientific texts.


Sends samples likely to contain Infusoria and some that Hooker collected in Antarctic regions.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg
Sent from
Source of text
Museum für Naturkunde Berlin (MfN/HBSB, N005 NL Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg Nr. 43)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 747,” accessed on 16 October 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 3