RECORD: Darwin, C. R. 1882. [Letter to N. A. von Mengden 'Science has nothing to do with Christ']. In Haeckel, Ernst. Die Naturanschauung von Darwin, Goethe und Lamarck. Vortrag in der ersten öffentlichen Sitzung der fünfundfünfzigsten Versammlung deutscher Naturforscher und Aerzte zu Eisenach am 18. September 1882. Jena: G. Fischer, p. 60.

REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed and edited by John van Wyhe 3.2008. A few typographical errors in the original have been silently corrected. RN1

[page] 60

June 5. 1879.

Down, Beckenham, Kent

Dear Sir! I am much engaged, an old man and out of health, and I cannot spare time to answer your question fully—provided it can be answered. Science has nothing to do with Christ; except in so far as the habit of scientific research makes a man cautious in admitting evidence. For myself I do not believe that there ever has been any Revelation. As for a future life, every man must judge for himself between conflicting vague probabilities.

Wishing you happiness

I remain, dear Sir,

Yours faithfully

Charles Darwin.1

1 This letter was addressed to Nicolai Alexandrovitch von Mengden (b. 1862), student at Dorpat, Russian diplomat. See Calendar 11971, 11981, 12079, 12088.

This document has been accessed 4042 times

Return to homepage

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

File last updated 2 July, 2012