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Record number: WCP4875

Sent by:
Alfred Russel Wallace
Sent to:
Charles Lyell
20 February 1868

Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, Hurstpierpoint, Sussex to Charles Lyell [none given] on 20 February 1868.

Record created:
16 November 2012 by Catchpole, Caroline


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Record contains:

  • letter (1)
  • publication (1)

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LETTER (WCP4875.5276)

A typical letter handwritten by author in English and signed by author.

Held by:
American Philosophical Society
Finding number:
The Darwin-Lyell Collection
Copyright owner:
ŠA. R. Wallace Literary Estate

Physical description

Transcription information





20th. Feb[ruary]. 1868

Dear Sir Charles

I think all has been managed so far very well, and I suppose we may understand that the Duke of Marlborough has yet made no promise to any other party. I can hardly think Mr. Coles’ influence so great as to override everybody elses’ Does it not seem however as if there would be some difficulty in Parliament, about getting an annual grant for an establishment.

[[2]] No one seems to reply to the absurd remarks, about Bethnal Green having a museum, & Islington or Lambeth claiming one next, -- with the obvious explanation that it is an "East London" not a "Bethnal Green" Museum, and that now all the Museums & exhibitions are in the West of London, the India House Museum having been removed at a Comparatively recent date.

[[3]] I am sending Darwins[sic] book, and have read the "Pangenesis" chapter first, for I could not wait. The hypothesis is sublime in its simplicity, and the wonderful manner in which it explains the most mysterious of the phenomena of life. To me it is satisfying in the extreme. I feel I can never give it up, unless it be positively disproved, which is impossible, or replaced by one which better explains the facts, -- which is highly improbably. Darwin has here decidedly gone [[4]] ahead of Spencer in generalization. I consider it the most wonderful thing he has given us, but it will not be generally appreciated.

Do you know who wrote that mean, ignorant, & impudent article in the Athenaeum?

I am glad to hear your 2nd vol[ume]. is to be out so soon. I shall look for it anxiously to see how far you support Darwin, as well as for the other most interesting matter it will contain.

Thanking you for your kind interest with the Duke of Marlborough

Believe me | Yours very faithfully | Alfred R Wallace [signature]

Sir Charles Lyell.1


1. ‘Sir Charles Lyell’ is written at the bottom of the first page under a drawn line.

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