DARWIN (CHARLES) Autograph letter signed ("C.D."), to his son George ("My dear G."), commenting on an essay by their kinsman Clarke Hawkshaw on "The Persistence of forms of life in the Depths of the Sea" and the "bearing of those researches on the origin of species", [Down], 30 January [1871]; with Hawkshaw's autograph draft of his essay
Lot 208
DARWIN (CHARLES)
Autograph letter signed ("C.D."), to his son George ("My dear G."), commenting on an essay by their kinsman Clarke Hawkshaw on "The Persistence of forms of life in the Depths of the Sea" and the "bearing of those researches on the origin of species", [Down], 30 January [1871]; with Hawkshaw's autograph draft of his essay
£ 30,000 - 40,000
US$ 40,000 - 53,000

Lot Details
DARWIN (CHARLES) Autograph letter signed ("C.D."), to his son George ("My dear G."), commenting on an essay by their kinsman Clarke Hawkshaw on "The Persistence of forms of life in the Depths of the Sea" and the "bearing of those researches on the origin of species", [Down], 30 January [1871]; with Hawkshaw's autograph draft of his essay
DARWIN (CHARLES)
Autograph letter signed ("C.D."), to his son George ("My dear G."), commenting on an essay by their kinsman Clarke Hawkshaw on "The Persistence of forms of life in the Depths of the Sea" and the "bearing of those researches on the origin of species", giving his opinion that Hawkshaw's work "appears to me a quite original essay. – At least the ideas had never occurred to me; nor had I met with them"; although he feels that greater stress might have been laid on the paucity, especially in shallow seas, of life in the depths of the ocean; and suggesting that Hawkshaw submit it for publication by Nature, adding however the rider that "I know not; it wd depend, I suppose, whether enough & more than enough may not have been of late written on nat. selection"; nevertheless assuring George that in his opinion "Hawkshaw could pass an examination on the 'Origin', he seems so well up in it"; with Hawkshaw's autograph draft of his essay, Darwin's letter, 2 pages (on a leaf torn from a serrated notepad), the essay written on one side only of 12 leaves, top page dust-stained, the letter with very light dust-staining where folded but nevertheless in fine and fresh condition, the essay folio, the letter 8vo, [Down], 30 January [1871]

Footnotes

  • 'ENOUGH & MORE THAN ENOUGH MAY NOT HAVE BEEN OF LATE WRITTEN ON NATURAL SELECTION' – Darwin considers the bearing that a study of deep-sea life might have on our understanding of the origin of species, praising the author of the essay for being able to "pass an examination on the 'Origin', he seems so well up in it". The author of the essay (John) Clarke Hawkshaw was a member of the distinguished engineering family and had been a contemporary of George Darwin's at Trinity College, Cambridge. In 1865 he married Cicely Wedgwood, Darwin's first cousin at one remove and niece of his wife Emma; the present owner being their descendant.

    Hawkshaw's essay, as submitted to Darwin, appears never to have been published. Darwin's letter, likewise, appears to have remained unpublished and is not recorded by the Cambridge University Darwin Correspondence Project. At the same time as he was reading and pondering Hawkshaw's essay, Darwin was busy correcting proofs of the Descent of Man.
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