RECORD: Stokes John Lort. 1882. [Letter of reminiscence of Darwin]. The Times (27 April): 5.

REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed by John van Wyhe 4.2007. RN1

[page] 5


Sir,—May I beg a corner for my feeble testimony to the marvellous persevering endurance in the cause of science of that great naturalist, my old and lost friend, Mr. Charles Darwin, whose remains are so very justly to be honoured with a resting-place in Westminster Abbey?

Perhaps no one can better testify to his early and most trying labours than myself. We worked together for several years at the same table in the poop cabin of the Beagle during her celebrated voyage, he with his microscope and myself at the charts. It was often a very lively end of the little craft, and distressingly so to my old friend, who suffered greatly from sea-sickness. After, perhaps, an hour's work he would say to me, "Old fellow, I must take the horizontal for it," that being the best relief position from ship motion; a stretch out on one side of the table for some time would enable him to resume his labours for awhile, when he had again to lie down.

It was distressing to witness this early sacrifice of Mr. Darwin's health, who ever afterwards seriously felt the ill-effects of the Beagle's voyage.

I am, Sir, yours truly,

J. LORT STOKES, Admiral.

Scotchwell, Pembrokeshire, April 25.

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

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