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Darwin Correspondence Project

To W. W. Baxter?   17 January [1872–4]1

Down, | Beckenham, Kent.

Jan. 17th

Dear Sir

Will you send me thrice the quantity of physic herewith prescribed & kindly mark outside bottle in ounces & drams how much my dose is twice a day, as this is far more convenient than roughly graduated bottle.— Please be careful about the Nux vomica as I am rather afraid of this.2 If you think it a large dose for a man with a very poor constitution, will you be so kind as to inform me.—

Please also send 6 or 8 oz of Glycerine

Dear Sir | Yours faithfully | Ch. Darwin


The year range is established by the printed stationery, with the address in the centre; CD used this type of notepaper between January 1872 and November 1874. Baxter was CD’s usual chemist.
Nux vomica was used as a stimulant, but is poisonous; strychnine is extracted from it (Milne 1869, p. 136).


Milne, Alexander. 1869. Manual of materia medica and therapeutics, embracing all the medicines of the British pharmacopœia &c. &c. 2d edition. Edinburgh: E. & S. Livingstone.


Requests a prescribed physic [not specified].

Letter details

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

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 8165,” accessed on 22 September 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 20