Manual of Scientific Enquiry

An introduction by R. B. Freeman

This useful book, edited by Sir John Herschel, went through six editions, remaining in print until 1906. Professor James Geikie's high opinion of Darwin's article on geology is given in Life and letters, Vol. 1, pp. 328-29. The first edition is found in three forms. In some copies there is a serious transposition of about two pages in the text of Darwin's article, although no matter is missing. This starts on page 178 at lines 2-4 which read 'Most bold coasts/are fronted by sharp promontories and even isolated/found by removing earth and birds' dung'. The transposition ends on page 180 where lines 2-3 read 'the now deeply submerged portions of the cliff have been/pinnacles:'. This transposition, of course, causes a third disjointed sentence at the point where the correct text begins again, on page 190 where lines 4-5 read 'these may be sometimes/simply worn away by the currents'. It would look as if the compositor had one sheet of the manuscript out of order. Some copies occur in this form with no cancel, although I have not seen one in publisher's cloth; some, including Darwin's own at Cambridge, have a cancel for his whole article in a pocket in the back board. The most frequent form, in my experience, has the cancel inserted in its correct place and no pocket. The correct text reads 'Most bold coasts/are fronted by sharp promontories and even isolated/pinnacles'; 'the now deeply submerged portions of the cliff have been/simply worn away by the currents' and 'these may be sometimes/found by removing earth and birds' dung'. In the good text the lines differ from those of the bad because the whole has been reset.

This edition was issued in blue cloth with foul-anchors on both boards; in some copies, but not all, the anchor on the top board is gilt.

Darwin's articles from the first, third and fourth editions also occur as separate offprints; those from the others may exist but I have not seen them. A facsimile of the second edition appeared in 1974.

Darwin, C. R. 1849. On the Use of the Microscope on Board Ship. In Richard Owen. Zoology. in John F.W. Herschel ed., A Manual of scientific enquiry; prepared for the use of Her Majesty's Navy: and adapted for travellers in general. London: pp. 389-395. Text Image Text & image F1822

Darwin, C. R. 1849. Geology. In Herschel ed., A manual of scientific enquiry. Text Image PDF F325

Darwin, C. R. 1851. Section VI: Geology. In Herschel ed., A manual of scientific enquiry. London: Murray, pp. 166-204. Text Image Text & image PDF F328

Darwin, C. R. 1857. Geologia. In Manual de investigaciones científicas; dispuesto para el uso de los oficiales de la armada y viajeros en general. Redactado por Sir F. W. John Herschel, Baronet. Segunda edicion. Traducido del inglés por Juan N. de Vizcarrondo. Cádiz : Imprenta y Librería de la Revista Médica, pp. 169-209. Image F2073


From: Freeman, R. B. 1977. The works of Charles Darwin: an annotated bibliographical handlist. 2d ed. Dawson: Folkstone.

NOTE: With thanks to The Charles Darwin Trust and Dr Mary Whitear for use of the Bibliographical Handlist. Copyright. All rights reserved. For private academic use only. Not for republication or reproduction in whole or in part without the prior written consent of The Charles Darwin Trust, 31 Baalbec Road, London N5 1QN.

Corrections and additions copyright John van Wyhe, The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online - National University of Singapore.


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