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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Edward Bartlett   1 July [1871]1

Down, | Beckenham, Kent.

July 1st

Dear Sir

I am very much obliged for the Duck-skins & enclose P.O. for 10s.

Be so good as to acknowledge safe receipt.2

Dear Sir | Yours faithfully | Ch. Darwin


The year is established by the printed stationery, with the address on the right, which is a type that CD used between May 1871 and January 1872.
No reply from Bartlett has been found. It is not known why CD required the duck skins, but see also the letter to A. D. Bartlett, 15 September 1871, which suggests that CD was interested in the structure of the beak. CD may have been working on countering Mivart’s objections to the possibility of the evolutionary development of the baleen sieve in the mouth of the whale (see letter to Francis Darwin, [after 21 January 1871] and n. 5). Dabbling ducks such as mallards use lamellae (comb-like projections on the bill) to sieve food particles from pond water.


Thanks for ducks’ skins, for which he encloses postal order.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Edward Bartlett
Sent from
Source of text
Houghton Library, Harvard University (Autograph File, D)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 7843,” accessed on 21 September 2021,

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