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Record number: WCP4880

Sent by:
Alfred Russel Wallace
Sent to:
Charles Lyell
22 March 1869

Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, 9 St Mark's Crescent, Regent's Park, London, N.W. to Charles Lyell [none given] on 22 March 1869.

Record created:
16 November 2012 by Catchpole, Caroline


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LETTER (WCP4880.5281)

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




9 St. Mark’s Crescent N.W.

March 22nd 1869

Dear Sir Charles,

I return your Darwins’ letter with thanks. I have read Tyndale’s books on glaciers very carefully, & believe myself’s theory to be quite inconsistent with his & Fabe’s facts. The whole cause and mode of the motion of glaciers seems to be still a mystery, but I do not see that myself’s argument in any way proves it can not be due to gravitation, because his experiment [[2]] on which his theory calculation is entirely founded, is one which seems to have been made under conditions such as never occur in a glacier.

Dr [Hull] has returned the proof, but I am sorry to say has insisted on cutting out the last par. & quotation, on the grounds that it interferes with the effect of the concluding theory. I have taken out altogether the passage about the erect trees of supposed post glacial age, as there seems so much doubt about the [[3]] facts.

On the question of glaciers, -- Tyndale puts among his ascertained facts a conclusion, that a mass of ice, even on a level, will be spread out over the surface by [supericumbent?] pressure, and of course must spread on the side of greatest slope of the ground. This will of course apply to the case of a glacier at or near a watershed supposing its thickness was great at that elevations.

Wishing you a pleasant Easter tour.

Believe me| Yours very truly | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]

Sir C. Lyell Bart.

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