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Darwin Correspondence Project

To John Murray   22 March [1871]1

Down. | Beckenham | Kent. S.E.

March 22d

My dear Mr Murray

Be so kind as to remember I must have one copy (pages cut) of the last 1000 to be printed on account of the few new corrections, sent off today.—2 The number will now be 5500— Would it be worth while as a puff & for my pride’s sake to put on title “sixth thousandth”.3 It is correct thus to speak of number?? But I beg you not to be guided by me in your decision: it may look too vain, or some other objection.—

yours very sincerely | C. Darwin

(I have thanked Messrs Clowes warmly)4

I see Reviews, not yet read, in Pall Mall & Observer.—5


The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter to John Murray, 21 March 1871.
See letter from John Murray, 20 March [1871]. The title page of the third printing has ‘seventh thousand’ (see Freeman 1977; see also letter from John Murray, 22 March 1871).
CD’s letter to the firm William Clowes & Sons has not been found.
CD refers to [Morley] 1871a and a review in the Observer, 19 March 1871, p. 3. For reviews of Descent, see Correspondence vol. 19, Appendix V.


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

Descent: The descent of man, and selection in relation to sex. By Charles Darwin. 2 vols. London: John Murray. 1871.

Freeman, Richard Broke. 1977. The works of Charles Darwin: an annotated bibliographical handlist. 2d edition. Folkestone, Kent: William Dawson & Sons. Hamden, Conn.: Archon Books, Shoe String Press.


Has this day sent off corrections for new issue [of Descent]. Asks whether title-page may read "Sixth Thousand".

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
John Murray
Sent from
Source of text
National Library of Scotland (John Murray Archive) (Ms. 42153 ff. 58–9)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 7610,” accessed on 21 September 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 19