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Record number: WCP5218

Sent by:
Alfred Russel Wallace
Sent to:
Henry Havelock Ellis
18 October 1900

Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, Corfe View, Parkstone, Dorset to Henry Havelock Ellis [none given] on 18 October 1900.

Record created:
28 March 2013 by Catchpole, Caroline


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Record contains:

  • letter (1)

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LETTER (WCP5218.5744)

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

Held by:
Manuscript and Archives, Yale University Library
Finding number:
Havelock Ellis Papers, Manuscripts and Archives, Yale University Library. MS. 195, Box 1.
Copyright owner:
ŠA. R. Wallace Literary Estate

Physical description

Transcription information




Parkstone, Dorset.

Oct[obe]r. 18th. 1900

Havelock Ellis Esq.1

Dear Sir

Thanks for sending me your little book -- The Nineteenth Century.2 I have read it through with much pleasure, and I agree with almost all of it.

It is a terrific condemnation of our false civilisation, and I am glad to find that you think so nearly as I do. There are many things in it however which are exaggerated & unfair -- as when to talk of our "love of dirt," -- ref "revelling in filth" -- [[2]] & things of that sort, -- but I suppose you would say that these were the natural errors of a student in a distant age.

I think the book would have been more attractive if you had broken it up into chapters or dialogues, & introduced a third speaker occasionally, in the manner of Sir Arthur Helps'3 admirable Friends in Council.4 Even so small a book with no break whatever from the first page [[3]] to the last is apt to be a little wearisome & confusing.

I should much like the book to leave a large sale & help to open people's eyes a little to our numerous imperfections.

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


1. Henry Havelock Ellis (1859-1939), English physician, writer, and social reformer.

2. HH Ellis, 1900, The Nineteenth Century.

3. Sir Arthur Helps (1813-1875), English writer.

4. A Helps, Friends in Council (First Series published in 1847).

Please note that work on this transcript is not yet complete. Users are advised to study electronic image(s) of this document, if available.