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of the liberated “spits.” This process, carried on for years, destroyed nearly all letters received before 1862. After that date he was persuaded to keep the more interesting letters, and these are preserved in an accessible form.

I have attempted to give, in Chapter III., some account of his manner of working. During the last eight years of his life I acted as his assistant, and thus had an opportunity of knowing something of his habits and methods.

I have received much help from my friends in the course of

my

work. To some I am indebted for reminiscences of my father, to others for information, criticisms, and advice. To all these kind coadjutors I gladly acknowledge my indebtedness. The names of some occur in connection with their contributions, but I do not name those to whom I am indebted for criticisms or corrections, because I should wish to bear alone the load of my short-comings, rather than to let any of it fall on those who have done their best to lighten it.

It will be seen how largely I am indebted to Sir Joseph Hooker for the means of illustrating my father's life. The readers of these pages will, I think, be grateful to Sir Joseph for the care with which he has preserved his valuable collection of letters, and I should wish to add my acknowledgment of the generosity with which he has placed it at my disposal, and for the kindly encouragement given throughout

my work.

To Mr. Huxley I owe a debt of thanks, not only for much kind help, but for his willing compliance with my request that he should contribute a chapter on the reception of the · Origin of Species.'

Finally, it is a pleasure to acknowledge the courtesy of the publishers of the Century Magazine' who have freely given me the use of their illustrations. To Messrs. Maull and Fox and Messrs. Elliott and Fry I am also indebted for their kindness in allowing me the · use of reproductions of their photographs.

FRANCIS DARWIN. CAMBRIDGE,

October, 1887

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viii

CONTENTS.

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.

CHARLES DARWIN IN 1874 (?). FROM THE ‘CENTURY MAGAZINE.'

THE PHOTOGRAPH BY CAPTAIN L. DARWIN, R. E. . rontispiece.

THE HOUSE AT Down. FROM THE ‘CENTURY MAGAZINE' Face p. 87

THE STUDY AT Down. FROM THE CENTURY MAGAZINE'

THE BEAGLE LAID ASHORE

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LIFE AND LETTERS

OF

CHARLES DARWIN.

CHAPTER I.

THE DARWIN FAMILY.

THE earliest records of the family show the Darwins to have been substantial yeomen residing on the northern borders of Lincolnshire, close to Yorkshire. The name is now very unusual in England, but I believe that it is not unknown in the neighbourhood of Sheffield and in Lancashire. Down to the year 1600 we find the name spelt in a variety of ways -Derwent, Darwen, Darwynne, &c. It is possible, therefore, that the family migrated at some unknown date from Yorkshire, Cumberland, or Derbyshire, where Derwent occurs as the name of a river.

The first ancestor of whom we know was one William Darwin, who lived, about the year 1500, at Marton, near Gainsborough. His great grandson, Richard Darwyn, inherited land at Marton and elsewhere, and in his will, dated 1584, “ bequeathed the sum of 35. 4d. towards the settynge up of the Queene's Majestie's armes over the quearie (choir) doore in the parishe churche of Marton."*

The son of this Richard, named William Darwin, and

* We owe a knowledge of these earlier members of the family to researches amongst the wills at Lincoln, made by the well-known genealogist, Colonel Chester,

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