RECORD: Darwin, C. R. St Helena model. (9.1838) CUL-DAR44.30[.1] Transcribed by John van Wyhe (Darwin Online,

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

NOTE: Chancellor 1990 noted: "The next datable manuscript dealing with the geology of St Helena is a single sheet of Eyehorn 1837-watermarked paper, bound near the back of DAR 44. The recto of this document is dated 15 September 1838, and headed 'St Helena Model'; it is written in pencil with a few ink annotations and concerns the topography of the north-west and north-east coasts of St Helena. It is written in a similar style to, and clearly overlaps in subject matter with the first fifteen pages of the St Helena Model notebook. Both documents seem to have been written during or immediately after examination of the 'gigantic model' of St Helena, which we know Darwin saw at the East India Company's Military College at Addiscombe, which is now part of Croydon in Surrey (see Darwin 1844, hereinafter referred to as VI: 75 footnote; 1846, hereinafter referred to as GSA: 25)."

See also the introduction to the Despoblado notebook.

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


September 15. 1838. St Helena model

High Hill rises above general range. — at the distance of one mile (a few yards more) from beach it may be safely called only 1600 ft: ladder hill being considered as 600 (ie 1000 ft alone ladder Hill). —

The cliff of Sugar loaf ladder Hill almost perpendicular; & coast is of about same height, from West side of Bark Battery by James Tower to 3/4 miles West of Long Ledge, & the upward slate about same. But near Long Ledge itself, coast rather lower. —

The slope as drawn is really too steep because the upper part is always more inclined if this kind. [sketch]

The line of cliff between Prosperous Hill & Bam is about 1300, & likewise for a space, before coming to stony dip of same altitude.

Longwood is 1762 ft & a very gradual slope from [Hold fest], (which perhaps have been slightly elevated) — about 20 two miles inland distant. —

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

File last updated 2 July, 2012