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211   Charles Darwin  $1000 $1000 $1100 1 You must login to place a bid.
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#211 - Charles Darwin Estimate: $8,000+

Darwin mourns following his greatest personal loss

ALS signed “C. R. Darwin,” both sides of a black-bordered 4.25 x 7 page, December 24, 1851. Written from his home in Down Farnborough, Kent, Darwin writes to his lawyer and financial advisor, Thomas Salt, in full: "Will you be so good, as to give notice to the Executor of the late Capt'n. Muckleston, that I wish to receive the £1000 lent to him on mortgage, to be paid after the proper interval has expired, or sooner should it happen to be convenient to the Executor. The £1000 was lent under the names of my Trustees Mr. J. Wedgwood & my Brother. Mr. Wedgwood will append his signature to this note to show his concurrence in my request." Josiah Wedgewood, Darwin's grandfather, had added his signature below. In fine condition, with intersecting folds.

At the time of this letter, Darwin and his wife Emma were still in mourning following the tragic death of their second child and eldest daughter, Annie. When their daughter contracted scarlet fever in 1849, Darwin brought Annie to the Worcestershire spa town of Great Malvern to undergo hydrotherapy performed by James Manby Gully. Her illness only worsened, however, and on April 23, 1851, Annie passed away at the age of 10. A week after her death, Darwin penned a tender memoir of his late daughter, which closed: ‘We have lost the joy of the Household, and the solace of our old age:—she must have known how we loved her; oh that she could now know how deeply, how tenderly we do still and shall ever love her dear joyous face. Blessings on her.’ Many align the loss of his daughter with Darwin’s abandonment of his Christian faith; he opted for walks while his family attended church, dismissed the notion of salvation or an afterlife, and although reticent of his own religious views, classified himself as more of an agnostic than atheist.

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