RECORD: Pym, H. N. ed. 1882. [Recollection of FitzRoy on Darwin.] Memories of old friends being extracts from the journals and letters of Caroline Fox of Penjerrick, Cornwall From 1835 to 1871. Smith, Elder. London, pp. 13-14.

REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed by John van Wyhe 5.2020. RN1

NOTE: Caroline Fox (1819-1871), was the daughter of Robert Were Fox, scientist and inventor with connections to travellers and explorers

[page] 13

October 3 [1836].— Captain Fitz-Roy came to tea. He returned yesterday from a five years' voyage, in

[page] 14

H.M.S. Beagle, of scientific research round the world, and is going to write a book. He came to see Papa's dipping needle deflector, with which he was highly delighted. He has one of Gamby's on board, but this beats it in accuracy. He stayed until after eleven, and is a most agreeable, gentlemanlike young man. He has had a most delightful voyage, and made many discoveries, as there were several scientific men on board.

Darwin, the 'fly-catcher' and 'stone-pounder', has decided that the coral insects do not work up from the bottom of the sea against wind and tide, but that the reef is first thrown up by a volcano, and they then surmount it, after which it gradually sinks. This is proved by their never finding coral insects alive beyond the depth of ten feet. He is astonished at the wonderful strides everything has made during the five years afore-passed.

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Citation: John van Wyhe, editor. 2002-. The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online. (

File last updated 21 May, 2020