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To Reviewer   [February–April 1868?]


Suggests, if further notice is to be taken of Variation, that the reviewer grapple with the subject of Pangenesis. Thanks him for his fair and friendly spirit.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Reviewer
Date:  [Feb–Apr 1868?]
Classmark:  DAR 96: 38
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5829

To J. J. Weir   29 February [1868]


JJW’s note on birds was one of the most interesting CD has ever received. Asks several questions. CD is puzzled by cases of magpies whose mates were killed but who always immediately found others.

Alexander Wallace denies any effect of colour in sexual selection among Lepidoptera.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Jenner Weir
Date:  29 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5958

From William Sedgwick   29 February 1868


Sends extracts giving details of the case of age-limited, hereditary blindness [see Variation 2: 78].

Recounts some cases of reversion that he has encountered.

Author:  Sedgwick, William
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  29 Feb 1868
Classmark:  DAR 177: 127
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5959

From H. T. Stainton   29 February 1868


Replies to CD on proportion of sexes in butterflies, coloration of moths, and courtship. Encloses copies of letters on these subjects between HTS, Henry Doubleday, and John Hellins.

Author:  Henry Tibbats Stainton
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  29 Feb 1868
Classmark:  DAR 85: B52-3; DAR 86: A16;
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5960

To John Bush   29 February [1868]


Writes at Frank Buckland’s suggestion. Can JB provide any information on the proportion of sexes in rats?

Do male rats fight for the possession of the female? Are they polygamous?

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Bush
Date:  29 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  Private collection
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5961

From Robert Russell   27 February 1868


A reply to CD’s inquiry in Gardeners’ Chronicle [Collected papers 2: 135]. The proportion of females to males in lambs of highland black-faced sheep.

Sends paper on conditions that favour predominance of plants.

Author:  Robert Russell
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  27 Feb 1868
Classmark:  DAR 85: B21; DAR 86: C16
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5945

From F. T. Buckland   27 February 1868



On the proportion of sexes in salmon, trout, and rats. [see Descent 1: 305, 308.]

Author:  Francis Trevelyan (Frank) Buckland
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  27 Feb 1868
Classmark:  DAR 86: A46–8b
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5946

From William Farr   27 February 1868


Encloses table showing proportion of sexes in Rutland.

Author:  William Farr
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  27 Feb 1868
Classmark:  DAR 164: 30, DAR 85: B116
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5947

To Philip Lutley Sclater   28 February [1868]


Bird specimens collected by Capt. P. P. King eventually went to British Museum, but many specimens were incorrectly marked.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Philip Lutley Sclater
Date:  28 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  American Philosophical Society (Mss.B.D25.345)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5948

To H. T. Stainton   28 February [1868]


Asks whether the colouring of particular butterflies has any protective function, to ascertain whether the function is other than sexual.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Henry Tibbats Stainton
Date:  28 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  E.W. Classey Ltd (dealers) (1974)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5949

To G. G. Stokes   28 February [1868]


Thanks GGS for information on the peacock’s feathers. Asks whether the colour zones around the "eye" could result from varying the thickness of the film of colouring matter or whether it would require different kinds of colouring matter.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  George Gabriel Stokes, 1st baronet
Date:  28 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  CUL (Add MS 7656: D74)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5950

To J. D. Hooker   28 February [1868]


Does not understand JDH on Pangenesis: on last page he appears to admit all that he regards as mere words on previous pages.

Wallace admires chapter on Pangenesis.

Pangenesis is a comfort. CD gains no idea from words like "potentiality" or "diffusing an influence"; atoms and cells give a distinct idea.

A. Newton told George that Berthold Seemann wrote the Athenæum review

and that Lewis [Lewes] did not write the Pall Mall Gazette review [see 5874].

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Joseph Dalton Hooker
Date:  28 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  DAR 94: 55–7c
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5951

From Alexander Wallace   28 February 1868



Proportion of sexes in insects, captured and bred. [see Descent 1: 313.]

Author:  Alexander Wallace
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  28 Feb 1868
Classmark:  DAR 85: B41–5
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5953

From W. S. Dallas   28 February 1868


Thanks CD for second issue of Variation.

Is glad CD is satisfied with his translation of Piderit.

Will not start on Müller [Für Darwin] until CD has communicated with the author.

Author:  William Sweetland Dallas
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  28 Feb 1868
Classmark:  DAR 162: 17
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5955

To F. T. Buckland   29 February [1868]


CD sends thanks for information; he will write to Mr Bush.

In relation to the fecundation of ova CD adds that he has compared the use of very little pollen against an immense supply; found no difference in number or weight of seeds or in their germination.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Francis Trevelyan (Frank) Buckland
Date:  29 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  American Philosophical Society (Mss.B.D25.)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5956

From Asa Gray   [25 February 1868 or later]


Discusses arrangements for American edition of Variation.

Observations on apparently inherited instinct in a dog.

Author:  Asa Gray
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  [25 Feb 1868 or later]
Classmark:  DAR 165: 102
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-2563

To J. B. Baillière et ses fils   29 February [1868]


Sends stamps to the value of 1s. 1d. and asks for parcel to be sent to 6 Queen Anne Street, Cavendish Square, London.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  J. B. Baillière et ses fils
Date:  29 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  J. A. Stargardt (dealer) catalogue 698 (2012)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-4415F

From William Blenkiron Jr   [c. February 1868?]



Answers for father, who is ill, on difference between manes of stallions and mares.

Author:  William Blenkiron, Jr
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  [c. Feb 1868?]
Classmark:  DAR 83: 184
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5340

To A. D. Bartlett   16 February [1868]


Asks ADB to perform experiment on colour perception in bower-bird.

Asks for rabbit specimens.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Abraham Dee Bartlett
Date:  16 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  Wellcome Collection (MS.7781/1–32 item 7)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5401

To T. H. Huxley   21 February [1868]


THH’s offer to read proof of essay on man encourages CD to write with satisfaction instead of a vague dread.

Begs Mrs Huxley not to forget corrugator supercilii in a crying child.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Thomas Henry Huxley
Date:  21 Feb [1868]
Classmark:  Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine Archives (Dawson 108)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-5408
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