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To Charles Lyell   [November–December 1842]


Believes "absurd letter" hastily read at last Geological Society Council meeting was from Charlesworth’s solicitor. Suggests that it may have been sent to entrap the Council and that it should be read over carefully.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Charles Lyell, 1st baronet
Date:  [Nov–Dec 1842]
Classmark:  The British Library (Surrogate RP 7381(i))
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-653

To W. D. Fox   [9 December 1842]


CD likes Down House, describes countryside.

Tells of Edward Charlesworth fracas at Geological Society.

Is at work on Volcanic islands.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  William Darwin Fox
Date:  [9 Dec 1842]
Classmark:  Christ’s College Library, Cambridge (MS 53 Fox 64)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-654

To Charles Maclaren   [15 November – December 1842]


Responds to CM’s review of Coral reefs [Edinburgh New Philos. J. 34 (1843): 33–47].

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Charles Maclaren
Date:  [15 Nov – Dec 1842]
Classmark:  Edinburgh New Philosophical Journal 34 1843: 47
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-662

To John Price    29 November [1842–55]


Not able to assist JP as he knows no schoolmaster in the area.

Cannot answer zoological question but thinks the two Serpulae are distinct.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Price
Date:  29 Nov [1842-55]
Classmark:  University of California, Berkeley, The Bancroft Library (BANC MSS 74/78 z)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1786

To Charles Lyell   [September–December 1842]


Discusses relationship of subsidence to the formation of coral reefs.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Charles Lyell, 1st baronet
Date:  [Sept–Dec 1842]
Classmark:  American Philosophical Society (Mss.B.D25.30)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-605

From Alexander Bridport Becher   1 September 1842


Francis Beaufort has instructed ABB to order three copies of Coral Reefs.

Author:  Alexander Bridport Becher
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  1 Sept 1842
Classmark:  United Kingdom Hydrographic Office Archive (Letter Book no .10 (1841–2), p. 510)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-605F

To William Yarrell   [5 or 12 September 1842]


CD is too dull and languid to see Mr Bicheno but will be glad to answer his questions if he writes.

Asks WY to ask J. Sebright "whether the cross with white bantam brought back any of the ""secondary male characters"" to the hen–cock breed".

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  William Yarrell
Date:  [5 or 12] Sept 1842
Classmark:  Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand (MS-Papers-1256-2)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-613

To Charles Stokes    [January–March 1842]



Returns snuff box.

Sends a microscope for repair.

Makes appointment to discuss some corals that he is sending.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Charles Stokes
Date:  [Jan–Mar 1842]
Classmark:  DAR 185: 91
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-613A

To J. S. Henslow   [26 January 1842]


CD relates that Robert Brown is anxious to have [C. M.] Leman[n] elected librarian of the Linnean Society and urges JSH to come to vote for him. CD joins in the request.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Stevens Henslow
Date:  [26 Jan 1842]
Classmark:  Archives of the New York Botanical Garden (Charles Finney Cox Collection)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-615

To the Geological Society of London   31 January [1842]


Hopes to meet with museum committee after 11 o’clock next day.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Geological Society of London
Date:  31 Jan [1842]
Classmark:  Geological Society of London (GSL/L/R/7/25)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-616

To J. F. Royle   [2 February 1842]


Asks JFR to support E. A. Darwin’s election to the Athenaeum.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Forbes Royle
Date:  [2 Feb 1842]
Classmark:  University of Rochester Library, Department of Rare Books and Special Collections
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-617

To Francis Boott   [3 February 1842]


"My Dear Sir, I have called on you, to solicit your vote & interest at the Athenaeum Club […] in favour of my brother, Erasmus Darwin".

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Francis Boott
Date:  [3 Feb 1842]
Classmark:  Christie’s (dealers) (13 December 2006, lot 34)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-617F

To Richard Owen   [4 February 1842]


Informs Owen of the fossil finds of F. J. Muñiz in south America.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Richard Owen
Date:  [4 Feb 1842]
Classmark:  Enns Entomology Museum, University of Missouri
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-617G

To Henry Thomas De la Beche   7 February 1842


Asks De la Beche about variation among domesticated animals in Jamaica.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Henry Thomas De la Beche
Date:  7 Feb 1842
Classmark:  National Museum of Wales, Department of Natural Sciences (De la Beche)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-618

To Hugh Edwin Strickland   17 February [1842]


CD approves of HES’s "laws" [of nomenclature]. Regrets that [J. E.?] Gray does not approve of the scheme. CD has sent the paper to William Ogilby and suggests that HES send it to G. R. Waterhouse, of whom he has a high opinion.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Hugh Edwin Strickland
Date:  17 Feb [1842]
Classmark:  Museum of Zoology Archives, University of Cambridge (Strickland Papers)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-619

To H. E. Strickland   [19 February 1842]


CD saw Andrew Smith, who is interested in the subject [of zoological nomenclature], but CD thinks he differs from HES on some points. Sends Smith’s address.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Hugh Edwin Strickland
Date:  [19 Feb 1842]
Classmark:  Museum of Zoology Archives, University of Cambridge (Strickland Papers)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-620

To Susan Darwin   [22 February 1842]



Comments on birth [of Catherine Elizabeth Sophia Wedgwood].

Plans to visit Shrewsbury.

Describes behaviour of William Darwin.

Discusses speculation losses of acquaintances, including T. Carlyle’s. Mentions his own loss on Journal of researches.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Susan Elizabeth Darwin
Date:  [22 Feb 1842]
Classmark:  DAR 185: 10
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-621

To W. D. Fox   23 March [1842]


Letter of condolence on the death of WDF’s wife [Harriet Fletcher Fox].

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  William Darwin Fox
Date:  23 Mar [1842]
Classmark:  Christ’s College Library, Cambridge (MS 53 Fox 57)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-624

To W. D. Fox   [31 March 1842]


Second letter of condolence, following burial of Mrs Fox.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  William Darwin Fox
Date:  [31 Mar 1842]
Classmark:  Christ’s College Library, Cambridge (MS 53 Fox 56)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-625

To A. Y. Spearman   29 April 1842


The fourth number of part four is now published; the Smith, Elder & Co. account is presented.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Alexander Young Spearman
Date:  29 Apr 1842
Classmark:  The National Archives (TNA) (T1/4723 paper 15949)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-625A
Document type
letter (57)
01 (8)
02 (7)
03 (4)
04 (1)
05 (6)
06 (1)
07 (4)
08 (4)
09 (8)
10 (8)
11 (3)
12 (3)
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