RECORD: Darwin, C. R. Geological diary: Baldivia. (2.1835) CUL-DAR35.347 Transcribed by Kees Rookmaaker, edited by John van Wyhe (Darwin Online,

REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed by Kees Rookmaaker, corrections and editing by John van Wyhe 5.2011. RN1

NOTE: This document, part of the largest scientific document composed by Darwin during the voyage of the Beagle, is written mostly in ink. Marginal notes are here integrated into the text. Darwin was in Valdivia 9-21 February 1835, see the Beagle diary, pp. 525-536. Darwin sometimes spelled Valdivia as Baldivia, his phonetic spelling of Spanish pronunciation. See the illustrations of Valdivia drawn by FitzRoy and P. G. King in Narrative 1.

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Reproduced with the permission of the Syndics of Cambridge University Library and William Huxley Darwin.

See the introduction to the Geological Diary by Gordon Chancellor.


Feb. 10th. [1835] Baldivia (1

"Corral Castle". The formation is schist varying much in its mineralogical nature: the most abundant is a slaty gneiss, where the pale feldspar occurs in distinct nodules or crystals in the layers of micaceous substance (2553). — it closely resembles the rock (a) of similar structure mentioned at Lowes Harbor. — By insensible passages, we have much black mica slate (2552), passing into a ampelite, as in to the Chonos Slate & some chloritic; both similar to what we have saw to the South. — The number of quartz veins is not here nearly so great in the latter district. —

The cleavage is well developed, but its direction not very constant ∴ near outer parts of harbor I recognized a westerly dip. — but near; but when near the castle the more usual one is about SW by S: (yes) there was some with directly opposite dip: — Indeed all the slate seems here to form parts of large curves, hence the irregularity. — In going to the Plaza I noticed a flat topped arch, for a considerable on each side of this, the laminae have a corresponding directly opposite dip. —

The angle is not large, generally about 15°, not Some higer & one place even 50° or 60°. —

These slate are capped. (as at P. Hechucucuy) by thick bed of a hardish conglomerate, formed of partly

347 verso

(a) This perhaps is the connecting link of between the mica slate of Chonos & Chiloe & the gneiss of Chili. —

The volcano of Villarica has its side inclined with the lower about 26°? — appear almost constantly in activity.

The whole coast between Chiloe & Baldivia appears to be of slates. with occasional coverings of tertiary strata: Inland the form equally points out the existence of both formations. — The height & general feature exactly resemble the inland parts of Chiloe. —

(Surly manner of the people)

Valdivia gneiss — auriferous

Few Less earthquakes. — Cudico Padre.1

at least 8. volcanoes. —

(3. Principal one. Antuco, Villaried & Osorno —)

Variation 18° —

1 Darwin wrote in the Beagle diary for 12 February 1835: "On account of the tired horse I determined to stop close by at the Mission of Cudico; to the Friar of which I had a letter of introduction. — Cudico is an intermediate district between the forest & the Llanos".

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

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