RECORD: Gordon Chancellor and John van Wyhe eds. Galapagos notebook. English Heritage 88202337. Edited by John van Wyhe (Darwin Online,

REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed from microfilm by Gordon Chancellor; transcription typed and checked against microfilm by Kees Rookmaaker 2.2006; transcription corrected by Chancellor 3.2006. The Galapagos pages (pp. 18b-51b) were compared by Randal Keynes with the microfilm, suggestions incorporated in the electronic text by Rookmaaker 6.2006. Edited and corrected against the microfilm by John van Wyhe 8.2007. Transcription revised and annotated 8-12.2008. RN26

The Beagle field notebooks are also published in:

Gordon Chancellor and John van Wyhe eds. with the assistance of Kees Rookmaaker. 2009. Charles Darwin's notebooks from the voyage of the Beagle. [Foreword by Richard Darwin Keynes]. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

NOTE: This notebook is bound in red leather with the border blind embossed: the brass clasp is intact. The front of the notebook has a paper label with 'Galapagos. Otaheite Lima' written in ink. The notebook was written primarily between August and November 1835. It has a total of 100 pages within the covers, 34 pages written from the front cover inwards (pp. 1a-34a), and 66 pages written from the back cover inwards (pp. 1b-66b).

Current whereabouts unknown. The notebook was part of the Darwin Collection at Down House. It was microfilmed by Cambridge University Library (and sold by Micromethods) in 1969. The notebook has been missing, presumably stolen, since around 1983 or shortly before, and is registered as stolen property.

Reproduced with the permission of English Heritage (Darwin Collection at Down House) and William Huxley Darwin.

Photograph of the cover reproduced by permission of the President and Council of the Royal College of Surgeons of England.

General introduction to the Beagle Field Notebooks.

Chronological register to the notebooks

Introduction to the notes on the Galapagos.

Introduction to the Galapagos notebook.

[front cover]


[inside front cover]



Limestone & Salt all parts of Island


Covington [7 R]

Lima August 4th 1835

1 The Galapagos marine iguana. Specimen 1305 in Zoology notes, pp. 293-4; listed as Amblyrynchus cristatus in Reptiles, p. 23. Darwin found the name in Byron 1826.

[page 1a excised]

[page 2a excised]

[page 3a]

Bones of Megatherium at Mendoza. —

R. San Francisco—


Aconcagua active. When? Before Birkbeck ??

19th of January [1835]

Mr Cood1 Mapa Fisico & Politico Alto & Bajo — Peru 18262

1 Henry Cood, an English merchant residing in Valparaiso.

2 Hacq 1826. See online here.

[page 4a]

14th [March 1835] Started for St Jago1 — in a Birloche or gig:

Hills all soft & worn into that sort of bifurcating ridges which is peculiar to degradation of soft matter; in all the ranges which I saw were composed of very soft gneiss or protogene, which is interlaced by veins of same figure as

1 St Jago, the capital of Chile, now called Santiago.

[page 5a]

quartz of a siliceo-Feldspath nature or Trapoidal or semiporphyritic, intersect each other, thin out downwards; & pass in places into surrounding rock yet some localities have air of true dykes: Having passed Prado true Porphyry

[page 6a]

The plain of St Jago it is only on the upper parts or border of basin where the sand or red clay & Tosca & Volcanic ashes are found, the lower part either excavated by rivers or retreat of ocean presents the true & pure

[page 7a]

gravel. —

Slept at the foot of the Prado & reached St Jago by 9 oclock on Sunday morning (15th): [March 1835]

Two roads to Guancavelica one by the coast, turning off a little above Caneta another passing by Guarochin

[page 8a]

Viviparous Lizard near Leposoma of Spix1 — Frog with pointed nose. Rhinella of Fitzhinger2

Wednesday [22 July 1835]

Level of Sea 29.952

Shells 29.877

Thermometer 72˚

Comminuted & large shells a considerable patch

1 Spix 1824. Leposoma is a genus of lizard.

2 Fitzinger 1826. Rhinella is a genus of toad.

[page 9a]

Thursday [23 July 1835]

Higher level 29.941

Thermometer Lower level 30.175

+ 5 ft. Thermometer - 67

29.580 Ther 62+

[page 10a]

Great blocks of Granite other side of Ancud Bay Chiloe, like the Geneva block1

Salt mine near mouth of R Guyaquil

Roe — stone of Copiapò

1 The erratic block known as Pierre de Gouté. See Playfair 1802 1: 387: "One of the largest blocks of granite that we know of, is on the east side of the lake of Geneva, called Pierre de Gouté, about ten feet in height, with a horizontal section of fifteen by twenty." Darwin referred to this erratic in CUL-DAR35.151-152 and CUL-DAR35.288-303.

[page 11a]

Letter paper

Volcanoes — Sea waves retire — St Jago or Valparaiso most affected

Direction of cracks

Earthquake — Coquimbo Copiapò

[page 12a]

The Beagle called in on the 23rd of April. — Valparaiso

Lima = Isd of Fronton & Lorenzo said to be united?

Foxes & Mice & Rats.—

passage said to be much smaller —

V Freziers1 Chart

1 Amédée-François Frézier (1682-1773), French engineer and explorer. Frézier 1717.

[page 13a]

Casma, Huaraz

But river course which formerly irrigated a tract, covered with Indian ruins = river course 50 yards wide & about 8 ft deep in solid rock — sand & shingle, after ascending some distance suddenly descended —

[page 14a]

As the Sandstone in Island contains Salt: some veins nearly 2 inches thick —

Lignite. black [glossy] coal —

parts vegetable structure. —

Difficulty of understanding Salt deposit in such open districts —

[page 15a]

Was Bellavista destroyed in 1846

Cliffs of Banos del Pujio about 200 ft above sea — 200 above Riman

Amancares 200 ft above sea 2 rivers unite Islands

Cannot understand, A. Cruikshank1 some pebble at about that elevation on some of the hills

1 'Mr. A. Cruckshanks' reported by Lyell 1830-3 3: 130 to have found sea pebbles 200m above sea level at Callao. Darwin referred to Cruckshanks in South America (p. 51) as providing yet more excellent evidence of dramatic elevation, some of it in historical times (see introduction to the Copiapo Notebook)

[page 16a]

High white powder

30.230 — T 68 | 70 AT—

30.350 — T 68 | 80

30.436      do   do

Smelling properties discussed of Carrion Hawk Crows Hawks No 32 Magazine of Natural History.—1

1 Carrion crows = Waterton 1833. A letter by P. Hunter in the same volume disputed that vultures found their food by scent: 'The means by which the vulture (Vultur Aura L.) traces its food', pp. 83-84 and extracts, pp. 84-88, of an article by John James Audubon from Jameson's Edinburgh New Philosophical Journal, which claimed that the Turkey Buzzard did not find its food by scent. Waterton replied, pp. 162-171, refuting Audobon's claims. See Journal of researches, 2d ed., p. 184.

[page 17a]

Reached Lima. Wednesday morning by coach — road, uninteresting. not like Tropical country — many ruined houses, owing to long state of anarchy:

Lima, passed gate; wretched filthy, tropical smell, ill paved — splendid looking town, from number of churches painted, like stone, cane as are upper stories.

[page 18a]

But every thing exceeded by ladies, like mermaids, could not keep eyes away from them: — remarkably mongrel population. =

Rode to Merchants home to sleep; nice garden & large house only 20 £ per annum!! — not fashionable — Before breakfast rode to neighbouring hills — I dare say view would be

[page 19a]

very pretty, but ceaseless mist & gloom: Have no idea of merits of view; excepting from day, from S Lorenzo — Clouds clearing away leaving strata, always give a majestic air to landscape. But even that day air not clear — Indians very different from Puelche: — Dined with Consul General1

1 Belford Hinton Wilson (1804-58), British Consul in Lima, 1832-7; Chargé d'Affaires, 1837-41; Consul General in Venezuela, 1842-52.

[page 20a]

very interesting evening. Bolivar's1 aid du camp: Peruvian geologist walk to Alameda=

Plain of Lima great extensive shingle, Islands on a large scale — They do not think but am not sure about bits of brick being peruvian: I examined hills near

1 Simon Bolivar (1783-1830), general and patriot leader who was instrumental in independence movements in Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. B. H. Wilson was Bolivar's aid de camp.

[page 21a]

Limekilns — Main rocks are calcareous & shaly, some tolerably pure black Limestone with thinner strata, intervening as to the South, others rather siliceous & grey coloured; — general dip, Easterly — injected & fronted by hills of green feldspathic rock passing into a greenstone There is much of the

[page 22a]

black impurer Limestone, as to the South. —

M. Riveiro, considers that there lie in Porphyry sometimes conglomerate structure, beneath which are Syenites & Granites, above the Limestone there comes Sandstone as of Lorenzo, with coal of Pasco: &

[page 23a]

probably Gypsum of other side of Cordilleras — Sandstone often capped by conglomerates —

The Salt & Coal belong to one formation —

mines in sandstone? Salt there? Shells from there & from coast

[page 24a]

Piura, shelly, Tosca — Payta — many [appear] // above 14 leagues Inland

Chira — Amatape

Dr Lynen Berlin1

Shells 1000 ft above sea, several 15-24 leagues from Payta

1 Not identified. This may be a phonetic spelling for Leinen.

[page 25a]

July 29th [1835] Went up to Lima — August 3d returned

Condors flight, close wing — remarkable motion of head & body — Lima numerous churches seemed to be upwards of 80. — large houses

plain [green] structure with Islands — Anarchical state

[page 26a]

black flag — Robbers Vive la patria off with your Jacket. — Few carriages or Carts, mules & water, donkeys;

Zapata, dust shot

Limestone of Mr Gay1 distinct to mine

1 Claude Gay (1800-73), French naturalist and traveller. Professor of physics and chemistry in Santiago, 1828-42.

[page 27a]

Channels back of Chilie penetrate to East of highest peaks — V valley of Cordilleras of Chili =

Mountain plants —

Sea side do —

The commonest leafless

[page 28a]

[coton] tree. Big tree —

Misseltoe1 tree on various other kinds —

¾ plants in flower

Duck2 male

Bitterns3 2 Female

1 Possibly specimen 3244 (Phoradendron henslovii) in Beagle plants, p. 182.

2 Specimen not in spirits 3299 in Zoology notes, p. 413; listed as Pæcilonitta bahamensis in Birds, p. 135.

3 Specimen not in spirits 3300 in Zoology notes, p. 413; listed as Nycticorax violaceus in Birds, p. 128.

[page 29a]

[This page was written on the Galapagos.]

Heron1 female

Craterized Point — Perfect cones — subsequent to streams. Desolate Narborough very beach — Crater: Albermale continent built of big old Volcanos

30th [September 1835] Reached Blonde Cove

1 Specimen not in spirits 3296 in Zoology notes, pp. 300, 413; listed as Ardea herodias in Birds, p. 128.

[page 30a]

Soap — Shoes

Does Ellis1 states that the Austral Isds have only lately been inhabited

are they low Isds?

Corall rapidly growing in the low Isds ?

M. Gay Limestone different from mine at Porpico

1 William Ellis (1794-1872), missionary in the South Seas. Ellis 1829.

[page 31a]

Murray grammar1

The argument of alternate bands of boulders — prevents ideas of boulder being carried on plains of Patagonia by any violent motion excepting by one beneath the sea —

Does Miers2 talk of loose blocks near S. Luis —

Mem: Galapagos. Is not Olivine present? in one of the Trachytes P 93. Daubeny.3 never

1 Murray 1824.

2 Meirs 1826.

3 ‘olivine rarely, if ever, occurs [in Trachyte], and therefore appears to be the only mineral which has any claim to be considered as peculiar to basalt', Daubeny 1826, p. 93.

[page 32a]

Ellis1 great [grey] fissure in Hawaii

Strong Earth quake useful to Geologist, can believe an amount of violence has taken place on earth's surface & crust

In Chiloe I notice accumulation of Rocks at foot of escarpments

1 Ellis 1829.

[page 33a]

Mad dogs. Copiapò

S. Cruz — Glaciers

On the Atlantic side my proof of recent side rise become more abundant at the very point where on the other side they fail —

[page 34a]

Collect all the data concerning recent rise of Continent

[Tia auru Piho]

[From here the notebook is written from the inside back cover. For readability the transcription and images are arranged from this point from the back cover inwards.]

[back cover, not microfilmed]

[inside back cover]

[Printed label:]



So prepared as effectually to secure the writing from erasure; — with a METALLIC PENCIL, the point of which is not liable to break.

The point of the pencil should be kept smoothly scraped flat & in writing it should be held in the manner of a common Pen.

Anchored 30th [September 1835] at Blonde Cove

Soap [Drying]

Letter Paper


Keg of Spirits


[page 1b]


Pichidongue in two places


Maytencillo (round Basin) to the South North of Amalanas & South Talinay—

& the Tonguy & Tonguy cilla: to the North

[page 2b]

P de la Vaca —

Mauli —




[page 3b]

Chiffles Tin Mattee: Bom

Saddle for mule



Silla fitted for Pistol &c

Turin a dulce

Made in Concepcion

2 dollars worth

[page 4b]

Mr Green1 — localities of Shells —

Letters home = Henslow = Eyton2

Women — Journal — Mr Lumb3 — Fox4

Arrange Specimens — Insects

Microscope = Caldcleugh — Letter for Iquique — Coquimbo

Books — Budge Money for Coquimbo

Alison5 — age of St. Domingo —

Fort which came in view —

Mr Croft back bone of Cetacea

Compass for Padre Pistols Quick silver mine Waddington

1 Mr Green, a ship owner in Valparaiso. See Narrative 2: 559.

2 Thomas Campbell Eyton (1809-1880), Shropshire naturalist and contemporary of Darwin's at Cambridge.

3 Edward Lumb (d. 1872), British merchant in Buenos Aires.

4 William Darwin Fox (1805-1880), clergyman, Darwin's second cousin and contemporary at Cambridge.

5 Alexander Caldcleugh (d. 1858), Scottish businessman, plant collector and author living in St. Jago.

6 Robert Edward Alison, English author who wrote on South American affairs and resident of Valparaiso and later managing director of a Chilean mining company.

[page 5b]

Boots & Shirts Jacket

Corfield1 — letters to home

Books — Therm — Candles Bread Meat Chocolate = Tea =

Cigars Passport

Agree with Mariano2

Caldcleughs message

Miers — Mr White3 — (Haines)

Capt Fitzroy —

Shoal of Ulloa (Mr [illeg] charts) (Arica soundings


161 HD St Augustin, [illeg] from of:

1 Richard Henry Corfield (1804-97), English merchant living in Valparaiso and Shrewsbury schoolfellow of Darwin's. Darwin stayed several times at his house in the Almendral, including his illness in September and October 1834.

2 Mariano Gonzales, Darwin's hired guide in Chile.

3 Possibly Nicholas White (b. 1806), Second ‘Master' on the Beagle.

[page 6b]

Covington Instructions —

Write Bill


[illeg] = Mr Croft time of clock stopping =

12-370 ft elevation of Guancavelica

letter from Duncan for Corfield

Chissel Snuff

Hat clean

Date of old Sea Wall

Mr Cood letter to Iquique

[page 7b]

Eck1 do

Miers2 map & Passport

Bracers Tooth Brush

Stirrups Letter paper

Mr Millers. Tea

[Sharp] Pencil

Gillman to Arica


Letter to Henslow.

Mr Jewel. —

1 Frederick Andrew Eck (1806 or 1807-1884), Swiss-born banker and collector of mineral specimens in South America, 1825-1852. See Correspondence vol. 1, p. 407.

2 Meirs 1826.

[page 8b]

Alison Barometer correct: & Bivalves — Flustra.


Mr Crofts clock stopped 17o — 15o to 12o oclock mean time: St Jago nearly at same time 10 minutes to — corresponding

[page 9b]


Money — small gold

Ship 100 miles of Bubbles of Air

Mr White

Aqua - diente.

Don Pedro Abadia

Fossil shells—

[page 10b]

Shells on surface on other parts or Islands

Best river course Limestone

Rocks of Lima, same as Isld.

Petrified wood, Gypsum & Salt:

Shell-fish Dredgers

Blue Beads &c &c for Indians. —

[page 11b]

Glass — Saucer — Books —

Mr Thomas = Fossil shells —

M. Barometer

Stags — Horns — Museum

Razors — Medicin

Sweet smelling oil. —

Night caps — Stockings

Black Ribbon

[page 12b]

Was Bellavista destroyed in Earthquake 46 —

No — [Mr Maclean]

Pill Boxes

Callejon la Maravilla

Mr Cunningham, thinks Carb of Lime as in Mortar is produced, is turned into Nitrate & this

[page 13b]

decomposes the Murate of Soda ???

For fourty leagues, salt-petre worked, plain 14 leagues wide, — 420 miles long. — Extend just within margin of plain.

[page 14b]


Dessalines D'Orbigny excellent memoir1

[Cobija] elevated — 300 ft. —

NB. The Syenite & purple Sandstone &

1 Blainville 1834.

[page 15b]

purple Porphyrie — all appear sparingly found here.

Great eruption at New Orleans on the 7th? of February

Rialeja. —

Osorro —

Aconcagua 19th of January

[page 16b]

Volcan Cerro

Cosiguina1 at 6 & ½ in morning of 20˚ of Enero: lasted 20˚ to 23 — most [violence] 4 first days

Ria Leje latitude Cholutega & Nacaome & Viejo

1 Coseguina in Nicaragua erupted on 22 January 1835 for four days.

[page 17b]

Costa de Leon

Letter Paper to pay to Chaffers1

Falkland fossils Tropical?


1 Edward Main Chaffers, Purser of the Beagle.

[page 18b] [Galapagos notes begin on this page.]

Eel dark reddish purplish brown with pale or whitish brown spots. Eyes Bluish1

Saturday [19 September 1835]: left our anchorage & stood out to outside of Island, did not anchor (Sunday.) [20 September 1835] Continued to beat to windward high

1 Specimen in spirits 1286 in Zoology notes, p. 360, collected in September 1835 on Chatham Island, Galapagos; listed as Muræna lentiginosa in Fish, pp. 143-4.

[page 19b]

side of island rather greener waterfalls of Water! — Came to an anchor in harbour where whaler was. — —

Monday [21 September 1835] A boat being sent to some distance, landed me & servant, 6 miles from the ship. Where we slept — I immediately started

[page 20b]

to examine a Black — Volcanic district deserving name of Craterized —

Met a 2 immense Turpin:1 [hiss], took little notice of me. — They well match the rugged Lava. —

Eating a Prickly Pear — which is well known to

1 Galapagos tortoise. Darwin recorded in the Beagle diary entry for 21 September 1835: 'In my walk I met two very large Tortoises (circumference of shell about 7 ft). One was eating a Cactus & then quietly walked away. — The other gave a deep & loud hiss & then drew back his head.' p. 354.

[page 21b]

contain much liquid —

Craterized district

Lavas, of two ages, one rugged little cemented bits — has been well compared to most boisterous frozen ocean; but with wide cracks — other apparently has had the outer crust weathered

[page 22b]

away a more solid rock now remains [crystals] prismatic, very uneven; but cracks filled up: & covered with low trees — These characters, define the very line of junction otherwise not distinguishable — the old cone

[page 23b]

(from the Sandstone crater?)

& newer kind proceeded from same district of covered with Craters. — in space of few miles little less than 100 — Examined several both old & new — All very small 5075 30-15. yards in diameter

[page 24b]

50-80 ft above a tolerably even district sloping a little from each of these points — Crater nearly as deep as the plain —

Average Average distance of Crater from Crater, ⅓ of mile — some more distant, 2 quite distinct very small ones

[page 25b]

30 yards from rim to rim — not possible to distinguish Stream from [crater] this form consisting of fi of circular rim of cemented fragments —

[page 26b]


where whole surrounded by very porous laminated clinkstone as if in flat surface one st[r]eam had [b] been poured out on all sides —

Other irregular piles, Crater more or less distinct of black & glossy. [stalach].

[page 27b]

from slaggy lava, from the base of which the Lava appear to have flowed or rather the [pile] formed directly subsequently to Stream: In the streams near all, Craters, covered gutters tolerably smooth side. 2.4

[page 28b]

ft deep. — well arched — At base of very many crater large Circular masses have subsided evidently from crust of [caverns] being lowered. These vary from 30 to 60 ft

[page 29b]

deep — 3 of these surround the Crater in one spot. —

Also parts of the Stream appear upheaved in arch — or down by escape of gas & have large irregular holes

[page 30b]

in consequence. —

These circular depression [pits] at first look like Craters. —

|| The Thenca1 very tame & curious in these Islds. I certainly recognise S. America in ornithology, would a botanist? — ||

1 Spanish name for mockingbirds.

[page 31b]

¾ of Plants in flower — age of freshest Lava not great

Pumice grey on beach

Near edge of Lava generally [bound] by crack parallel to the border —

I now understand St Jago Lava —

50 years in the sea —

[page 32b]

would remove the Crater & upper surface of Lava. Who could tell points of upheaval — no direction of points — ("King Landscape)

These are Phlegrean fields to [Etna] — Finger Point — & Vesuvius Crater Hill =

[page 33b]

These other such district on opposite side of Hill —

So does Hoods Isd appear to be Clinking plates of "iron Lava

[page 34b]

Dry sand — Lizards —

Black Mud & parasites —

Brazil without big trees.

Feast. Robinson Crusoe —


Great tendency to nodular or Concretionary structure in all Volcanic Sandstones

1 Galapagos finches, commonly known as 'Darwin's finches'. This is the first known explicit recording by Darwin of the Galapagos finches and here presumably referring to the thick-billed large ground finch listed as Geospiza magnirostris, Birds, p. 100, plate 36; see specimen 3331 in Zoology notes, p. 297.

[page 35b]

Galapagos Lava generally ∠r cellular: therefore little fluid — agrees with little Volcanic Ashes [&c] — But columnar, built up or concretionary —

Covers about 160 nautical miles square: in space = to Sicily & Lipari Isds

View of Craters like in Scrope;1 & Lyell [3]

1 Scrope 1825.

[page 36b]

12th — Monday [October 1835]

Walked up to the Houses — Slept there Eating Tortoise meat
By the way delicious in Soup. —

Followed down the ravine with water — soon drys: very green & pleasant

[page 37b]

Extraordinary numbers of Turpin —

When drinking bury head above eyes —

Will drink when a person is within 2 yards of them about 10 gulps in minute.

noise during cohabitation

[page 38b]

& length of time certain — Eggs covered by sand soil from 4 to 5 in number — require a long time before they are hatched. —

Quickness of travelling certain — now said come every

[page 39b]

three days for Water — Eat Cacti in the dry Islands

Yellow Iguana1 intestine full of Guyavitas & some large leaves

eggs in a hole — Caracara2 habits

1 Specimen 1315 in Zoology notes, p. 294; listed as Amblyrhynchus demarlii in Reptiles, p. 22, plate 12, current name Conolophus subcristatus. Today sadly extinct on James Island.

2 The Galapagos hawk, specimens 3297-3298 in Zoology notes, p. 299; listed as Craxirex galapagoensis in Birds, p. 22, plate 2, current name Buteo galapagoensis.

[page 40b]

like Carrancha
sound Slaughter house kill chickens — run like a cock

Thenca eat bits of meat

13th Tuesday [October 1835] Returned — Cloud

[page 41b]

all morning descended highest Crater — Glassy Feldspar — red glossy scoriæ:

Whaler gave us Water — extraordinary kindness of Yankeys

[page 42b]

14th [October 1835] Wandered about Bird collecting —

Iguana1 — shakes head vertically; sea — one no = dozes, hind legs stretched out walks very slowly — sleeps — closes eyes — Eats much Cactus:

Mr Bynoe2 saw one

1 Galapagos land iguana, listed as Amblyrhynchus cristatus in Reptiles, p. 23; see Zoology notes, pp. 295-7.

2 Benjamin Bynoe (1803-1865), assistant Surgeon on the Beagle.

[page 43b]

run walking from two other carrying it in mouth — Eats very deliberately, without chewing — Small Finc[h] picking from same piece after alights on back —

[page 44b]

generally in the Tent generally 85-80˚ —

Trade wind & sun 77˚ or 78 —

On Rock out of wind 108˚ — —

[page 45b]

Friday. [16 October 1835] No wind 12 oclock

in Tent. 93˚

on sand above 137˚

In little wind & sun } 85˚

[page 46b]

at highest central Crater; marks where streams have flowed —

Crater perfect one side lower — red glossy scoriæ — ¼ ⅓ of mile diameter. —

Near Bivouac on Coast to Eastward —

[page 47b]

many thin streams of Trachyte all with much glassy Feldspar. Some very old Craters The covering of Volcanic Sandstone on the hill which has been particularly described is marked in [channel]

[page 48b]

or arches — hence not dust — since land assumed present height or there would have been a cliff —

Iguana digs tail motion slow — appear =

[page 49b]

same stupid from low facial ∠ = Very fond of Cactus run away like dogs from one another with pieces — Excavate Burrow shallow — first on one side & then on other — two or three time

[page 50b]

throw dirt with one arm & kick it out with well adapted hind leg

then other side


Saturday 18 17th [October 1835]

Ship came —

Sunday 19 18th [October 1835] Ran

1 Halley's Comet.

[page 51b] [Continuous Galapagos notes end with this page]

along Albermarle Isd

One of the mounds in Albermarle most covered with bare Lava —

Mounds 4000 ft high

30 yard in 5 minutes1

30 yard in 5 minutes 360 — in 1 hour    24 1440 7200 8640 4. 1/3

640 200

32 100

16 50

1 Calculations on the speed of tortoises.

[page 52b]

Fresh water Fish

Bynoe direction of Slate in Obstruction Sound

Bynoe says they were quite angular the fragment[s] of Granite on Icebergs —

18th Wednesday: [November 1835] travelled up valley — at first beautiful view over cocoa nut

[page 53b]

trees — 2 fine men, take no cloths or food — Higher up valley very profound — most dangerous pass — ropes — Kotzebue1 — Then one with pole, ropes, dogs & luggage. — Wonderful view — Cordilleras nothing at all like it. Ascended a lava slope

1 Otto von Kotzebue (1787-1846), Russian explorer and navigator. Kotzebue 1821.

[page 54b]

excessively steep — middle of day vertical sun.

steaming hot — cascades in all parts, enormous precipices — columnar — covered with Lilies — Bananas & trees — after ascending fern hill threw myself in shade of thick trees surrounded

[page 55b]

by Sugar — Bananas — — Food so abundant — Yams, Taro — Sweet root like Sugar, size of [log] & forest of shady Bananas.

different taste

Rivers fish & Prawn —

catch them diving gracefully amphibious. Ellis horse story1

1 Ellis 1829 recounted how a horse being landed at Tahiti in 1817 fell overboard and the natives on the ship 'plunged into the water, and followed [the horse] like a shoal of sharks or porpoises'. Darwin cited this in Journal of researches, p. 486, with the observation 'The Tahitians have the dexterity of amphibious animals in the water.'

[page 56b]

this track so wonderful only famine & murders [ever] could have induced people to have discovered them — Men speak a little English — breakfast — make fire rubbing. — Gauchos like Carpenters tool — really most fearful road 7000 ft

[page 57b]

mountain split by mere crevices to the very base valley three sources, we took South one —

Geology — rocks chiefly grey base, with nests of olivine vesicular in bands, some hard conglomerates — fragments of Trachyte & [do] large Crysts of glassy Feldspar & Hornblende

[page 58b]

volcanic clay & Sandstones.

Great pile of Lavas eat through by rivers. —

Ava not drink — Spirits. Men tell me not to tell Missionary. —

Bivouac —

cool stream where we bathed buried in peaks — house of Banana profusion of fruit — green leaves, thatch, dry

[page 59b]

bed. 20-25 ft high shade as dark as noon —

After supper baked in stones fine vegetables. walked up to a little way in Banana grove by Valley. heard another cataract of 200 ft — Peaks in front ∠ 45˚ —

Evening sublime —

[page 60b]

Ava, brook shaded by knotted, deadly ava — acrid, poisonous stimulative taster — eat small bit, fear missionary. Say prayers & grace no compulsion

Valley without breath of wind, unbroken Banana leaf — much rain

[page 61b]

during night [pretty] dry

19th [November 1835] — returned by other road — Bananas, avoiding cascades sweeping round hill side, entered valley high lower down — only one place where rope was required — knifes edge, enormous precipices on each hand. — Men very

[page 62b]

strong Tatooed, recall picture of S American forest — flowers round head, in the gloom of Bananas — caught some fine Eel. — Banana 3-4 ft circumference. Evidence how man can live by hand.

Geology conglomerates certainly marine. —

Specimens will show the

[page 63b]

kinds — Valley crevice very little wider at base & some way up than twice bed of torrent —

Knife edges, about same angle as a ladder — vegetation clings on a ∠ surface of decomposing rock — up to the highest peak — enormous appetite at breakfast

[page 64b]

mass of Banana!! — fatiguing travelling so far poising each step with greatest care. —

20th [November 1835] — Slept under ledge of rock, very dark valley, starlight.— returned, met party of noble athletic figures travelling for Tayo. —

Found ship moved Papawa, walked round — Friday

[page 65b]

21st [November 1835] Ship returned Point Venus.

22d [November 1835] Sunday went down to Papiete in boat —

Tahitian service — not much attention, appearance respectable, good singing. — not Euphonious sound —

good missionaries
walked back in rain

Never can believe what is heard. —

[page 66b]

24 23d [November 1835] reef —

25th [November 1835] Breakfast Mr Wilson1 — Papiete — Queen party

26th [November 1835] great Parliament. —

1 Charles Wilson (1770-1857), missionary at Matavai in Tahiti since 1797. See FitzRoy and Darwin 1836; Shorter publications, pp. 5-31.


Textual notes to the Galapagos notebook

[IFC] 1.17] Down House number, not transcribed.

Lima August 4th 1835] written perpendicular to the spine.

13] added by Nora Barlow, pencil, not transcribed.

[10a] Lower level+ 5 ft.] ink.

+ 5 ft.] ink.

[IBC] Anchored…Cove] written perpendicular to the spine.

[1b] in two places] ink. numerous ink marks appear to be nib tests.

[12b] Callejon la Maravilla] not in Darwin's handwriting?

[13b-14b] lower third of leaf excised.

[31b] age...great] added ink.

[51b] 30...50] ink.

[52b] small ink marks appear to be nib tests.

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

File last updated 30 April, 2022