Publications communicated by Darwin

An introduction by John van Wyhe

In addition to Darwin's own publications, he also directly facilitated many publications by others. Such publications were often "communicated by" a member, as a fellow of a learned society, when they submitted it in their own name. For example, A. R. Wallace sent a paper in mid-1859 on the zoological geography of the Malay Archipelago and asked Darwin to forward it to the Linnean Society. (Wallace was not then a Fellow.) Darwin thought the paper "admirable" and communicated it to the Linnean Society where it was read at a meeting in November and published the following year. (A269)

Naturalists also forwarded, on their own initiative, letters written to them which might be of general interest to journals or magazines. For example, Darwin forwarded several letters from his correspondent Fritz Müller, sometimes with prefatory remarks or just sent the letter to a journal. Such letters would then be introduced by the editor with a note such as this one in Nature: "Mr. Charles Darwin has kindly sent us for publication the following letter, addressed to him by Herr Fritz Müller, the well-known naturalist". (F1811)

Some of those whose work Darwin got published:
Ferdinand Julius Cohn, Mary Elizabeth Barber, Richard Spruce, Alfred Russel Wallace, Hubert Airy
Fritz Müller, Edward Blyth, Asa Gray, Lawson Tait, John Lubbock

On other occasions, a letter was printed without any indication that Darwin had been involved, as when Ernst Krause's letter to Kosmos regarding the attacks by Samuel Butler was translated into English and published in Nature in 1881. (A629) Darwin forwarded letters from many others. However, just because something was sent by Darwin was no guarantee of publication which was a decision in the hands of editors or society secretaries. For example, in 1875 Darwin sent a paper by Lawson Tait on the tropical pitcher-plant Nepenthes to the secretaries of the Royal Society of London but it was rejected for reading before the society. (See Correspondence vol. 24, p. 38.)

Darwin could, of course, have things published on his own. In 1861 he and Asa Gray shared the costs of reprinting some of Gray's American articles about Origin of species as a pamphlet (A567) and in 1869 Darwin sponsored the translation and publication of Fritz Müller's 1864 pamphlet Für Darwin (A890) as Facts and Arguments for Darwin. (A263) In 1879 he had Ernst Krause's biographical essay on his grandfather Erasmus Darwin translated and added a 'Preliminary notice' which was longer than Krause's essay. (F1319)

And, finally, there was the monumental Index Kewensis, an attempt to list the names of all genera and species of plants which Darwin urged and funded with £250 in January 1882 and left instructions that his family should continue to support the project for four or five years after his death.

In all, Darwin facilitated at least sixty-eight publications by others between 1838 and 1882. This list of publications is the result of many years of research though no doubt more remain to be identified. These constitute an often overlooked or invisible part of Darwin's scientific output.

We would be grateful to be informed of any further items communicated by Darwin.

Bollaert, [William]. 1838. Description of the insulated masses of silver found in the mines of Netanyahu, in the province of Tarapaca, Peru. Communicated by Mr. Darwin. London and Edinburgh Philosophical Magazine and Journal of Science 12: 578-9. Text PDF A2615

Bain, A. G. 1839. An extract from a letter addressed to Dr. Andrew Smith by A. G. Bain, Esq., dated Graham Town, Cape of Good Hope, February 21st, 1839, and communicated by Charles Darwin, Esq. Proceedings of the Geological Society of London 3: 152. Text A2616

[Lindley, John]. 1847. [Review of South America]. Gardeners' Chronicle (30 Jan.): 71. Text PDF A2114

[Lindley, John]. 1856. Cross breeding. Gardeners' Chronicle (6 Dec.): 808. Text PDF F3456

[Buckman, James] J. B. 1858. Foreign and native weeds. (Forwarded by Darwin) Gardeners' Chronicle no. 1, (2 January): 11. Text PDF A2885

Swale, William. 1858. Hive-Bees in New Zealand (Extract of a letter to Mr. Darwin). Gardeners' Chronicle (13 Nov.): 829. Text Image A84

Lubbock, John. 1858. An account of the two methods of reproduction in Daphnia, and of the structure of the Ephippium. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 29 Jan. 1857) Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London 147: 79-100. Text Image A243

[Blyth, Edward]. 1859. Notice of the various species of bovine animals. By the Editor of the 'Indian Field.' Communicated by Charles Darwin. The Zoologist 17: 6360-67; 6414-29; 6475-85; 6506-21; 6547-60; 6700-6701; 6777. PDF A2617

Gray, Asa. 1860. Darwin on the Origin of species. (Forwarded by Darwin) Annals and Magazine of Natural History 3d ser. 6: 373-86. Text PDF A2908

[Gray, Asa.] 1860. The origin of species. (Forwarded by Darwin) Athenaeum, no. 1710(4 Aug.): 161. Text PDF A2909

Wallace, A. R. 1860. On the zoological geography of the Malay Archipelago. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 3 Nov. 1859) Journal of the Proceedings of the Linnean Society: Zoology 4: 172-84. Text A269 

Gray, Asa. 1861. Natural Selection not inconsistent with Natural Theology. A free examination of Darwin's treatise on the Origin of Species, and of its American reviewers. Reprinted from the Atlantic monthly for July, August, and October, 1860. London: Trübner & Co., Boston: Ticknor and Fields. Text image A567

Dzierzon, Jan. 1862. Do bees vary?─Dzierzon's opinion on the point. Journal of Horticulture and Cottage Gardener, n.s. 3 (9 Sept.; 11 Nov.): 463-4; 642-3. PDF A2910

Lincecum, Gideon. 1862. Notice on the habits of the "Agricultural Ant" of Texas ["Stinging Ant" or "Mound-making Ant," Myrmica (Atta) malefaciens, Buckley]. Communicated by Charles Darwin, Esq., F.R.S., F.L.S. (Read 18 Apr. 1861) Journal of the Proceedings of the Linnean Society of London, Zoology 6: 29-31. Text PDF F1938

Trimen, Roland. 1863. On the fertilisation of Disa grandiflora, Linn. By Roland Trimen, Esq., of the Colonial Office, Cape Town drawn up from notes and drawings sent to C. Darwin, Esq., F.L.S. &c. Journal and Proceedings of the Linnean Society, Botany 7: 144-7. Text Image A212

Scott, John. 1864. Notes on the sterility and hybridization of certain species of Passiflora, Disemma, and Tacsonia. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 16 Jun.) Journal of the proceedings of the Linnean Society 8: 197-206. PDF A2101

Scott, John. 1865. Observations on the functions and structure of the reproductive organs in the Primulaceæ. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 4 Feb. 1864) Journal of the Linnean Society, Botany 8: 78-126. PDF A1057

Scott, John. 1865. On the individual sterility and cross impregnation of certain species of Oncidium. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 2 Jun. 1864) Journal of the Linnean Society, Botany 8: 162-7. PDF A2618

Fonblanque, Albany. 1865. Notice of a mule breeding. (Communicated by Darwin) Natural History Review n.s. 5: 147-8. Text A2892

Crüger, H. 1865. A few notes on the fecundation of orchids and their morphology. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 3 Mar. 1864) Journal of the Linnean Society, Botany 8: 127-35. [CUL-DAR70.14] PDF A2619

Trimen, Roland. 1865. On the structure of Bonatea seciosa, L., with reference to fertilization. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 1 Dec. 1864) Journal of the Linnean Society, Botany 9 (Oct.): 156-60. PDF A2103

Hildebrand, Friedrich H. G. 1866. On the necessity for insect agency in the fertilisation of Corydalis cava. Communicated by Charles Darwin, V.P. International Horticultural Exhibition (22-31 May): 157-8. PDF A2620

Müller, Fritz. 1866. Notes on some of the climbing-plants near Desterro, in South Brazil; in a letter to C. Darwin, Esq., F.R.S., F.L.S., &c. (Read 7 Dec. 1865) Journal of the Linnean Society (Botany) 9: 344-9, plate IX. Text Image PDF A928

Farrer, Thomas Henry. 1868. On the manner of fertilization of the scarlet runner and blue lobelia. (Publication suggested by Darwin) Annals and Magazine of Natural History 4th ser. 2: 255-63. Text PDF A2911

Tegetmeier, W. B. 1868. Proportion of the sexes in horses and other domesticated animals. (By request of Darwin) The Field (22 February): 7. Text Image A2888

[Wedgwood, Lucy Caroline]. 1868. Worms. (Submitted by Darwin) Gardeners' Chronicle (28 March): 324. Text Image A598

Bonavia, E. 1868. Peloric form of Clitoria ternatea. (Forwarded by Darwin) Gardeners' Chronicle and Agricultural Gazette (26 September): 1013. Text PDF A2887

Weale, J. P. Mansel. 1869. Notes on the structure and fertilization of the genus Bonatea, etc. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 16 Apr. 1868) Journal of the Linnean Society, Botany 10: 470-6. PDF A2621

Anon. 1869. [Influence of the stock on the scion]. (Forwarded by Darwin) Gardeners' Chronicle (26 June): 686. Text A614

Müller, Fritz. 1869. Facts and arguments for Darwin. Trans. by W. S. Dallas. London: John Murray. Text Image PDF A263

Spruce, Richard. [1871]. Ant-agency in plant-structure, or the modifications in the structure of plants which have been caused by ants, by whose long-continued agency they have become hereditary, etc. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 15 Apr. 1869) Journal of the Linnean Society, Zoology 11: xliv. A2102 [Not published]

Airy, Hubert. 1873. On leaf-arrangement. By Hubert Airy, M.A., M.D. Communicated by Charles Darwin, F.R.S. Received January 21, 1873. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London 21: 176-9. Text Image A248

[Gray, Asa. Forwarded by Darwin.] 1873. Survival of the fittest. Nature (27 Mar.): 404. Text Image PDF A1028

Huggins, William & Darwin. 1873. Inherited instinct. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 7 (13 Feb.): 281. Text Image PDF F1757

Hague, James Duncan & Darwin. 1873. Instinct: Perception in ants. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 7 (10 Apr.): 443-4. Text Image PDF F1810

Hague, James Duncan & Darwin. 1873. Habits of ants. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 8 (24 Jul.): 244. Text Image PDF F1761

Weale, J. P. Mansel. 1873. Notes on a solitary bee allied to the genus Anthidium, Latr. Communicated by Charles Darwin. Journal of the Linnean Society, Zoology 11: xxvii. [Not published] A2104

Weale, J. P. Mansel. 1873. Notes on a species of Disperis found in the Hagaberg, South Africa. Communicated by Charles Darwin. Journal of the Linnean Society, Botany 13 (Aug.): 42-5. PDF A2105

Weale, J. P. Mansel. 1873. Some observations on the fertilization of Disa macrantha. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 23 Nov. 1870) Journal of the Linnean Society, Botany 13 (Aug.): 45-7. PDF A2106

Weale, J. P. Mansel. 1873. Notes on some species of Habernaria found in South Africa. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 3 Nov. 1870) Journal of the Linnean Society, Botany 13 (Aug.): 47-8. PDF A2107

Weale, J. P. Mansel. 1873. Observations on the mode in which certain species of Asclepiadeae are fertilized. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Read 3 Nov. 1870) Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 13: 65 (Aug.): 48-58. PDF A2108

Müller, Fritz & Darwin. 1874. Recent researches on termites and honey-bees. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 9 (19 Feb.): 308-9. Text Image PDF F1768

Müller, Fritz. 1874. The habits of various insects. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 10 (11 June): 102-3. Text Image PDF A80

Lewis, Leyson. 1874. Specimen of the male Hop with apparently female flowers. (Forwarded by Darwin) Gardeners' Chronicle (8 August): 174, fig. 37. Text PDF A2889

Barber, Mary Elizabeth (Mrs). 1874. Notes on the peculiar habits and changes which take place in the larva and pupa of Papilio Nireus. Communicated by Charles Darwin. Transactions of the Entomological Society of London (Part IV, Dec.): 519-21. Text PDF A2100

Airy, Hubert. 1874. On the leaf-arrangement. Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Received 23 Mar.) Proceedings of the Royal Society of London 25 (30 Apr.): 298-307. PDF A2622

Gray, Asa. 1874. Robert Brown and Sprengel. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature (2 Jul.): 161. Text PDF A2913

A Lady. 1875. Extinction of the Macartney Rose. (Forwarded by Darwin) Gardeners' Chronicle (17 Jul.): 78. Text Image A2914

Tait, Lawson. 1875. Insectivorous plants. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature (29 Jul.): 251-2. Text A1053

Müller, Fritz. 1876. Fritz Müller on Brazil kitchen middens, habits of ants, etc. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 13 (17 Feb.): 304-5. Text Image PDF F1811

Airy, Hubert. 1876. On the leaf-arrangement of the Crowberry (Empetrum nigrum). Communicated by Charles Darwin. (Received 8 May 1876) Proceedings of the Royal Society of London 25 (15 Jun.): 158-60. PDF A2623

Cohn, Ferdinand Julius & Darwin. 1877. The contractile filaments of the teasel. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 16 (23 Aug.): 339. Text Image PDF F1778

Müller, Fritz & Darwin. 1877. Fritz Müller on flowers and insects. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 17 (29 Nov.): 78-9. Text Image PDF F1781

Cheeseman, T. F. 1877. Fertilisation of Glossostigma. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 17 (27 Dec.): 163-4. Text Image PDF F1812

Darwin, Francis. 1878. On the protrusion of protoplasmic filaments from the glandular hairs of the common teasel (Dipsacus sylvestris). Communicated by Charles Darwin. [Abstract] Proceedings of the Royal Society of London 26: 4-8. Text Image A242

Gray, Arthur H. & Darwin. 1878. Transplantation of shells. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 18 (30 May): 120-1. Text Image PDF F1783

Müller, Fritz. 1878. [Letter to Darwin, 27 Nov. 1877]. (Read 6 Feb.) Proceedings of the Entomological Society of London, pp. ii-iii. Text PDF A2006

Müller, Fritz & Darwin. 1879. Fritz Müller on a frog having eggs on its backon the abortion of the hairs on the legs of certain caddis-flies, &c. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 19 (20 Mar.): 462-3. Text Image PDF F1784

Krause, Ernst. 1879. Erasmus Darwin. With a preliminary notice by Charles Darwin. Trans. by W. S. Dallas. Text Image PDF F1319. Darwin's annotated copy: Image PDF

Morse, Edward Sylvester & Darwin. 1880. The Omori shell mounds. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 21 (15 Apr.): 561. Text Image F1788

Wilder, Burt Green. 1880. The two kinds of vivisection—sentisection and callisection. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 23 (30 Sept.): 517-18. Text Image A290

Sanderson, John Sr., & Darwin. 1880. Black sheep. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 23 (30 Dec.): 193. Text Image PDF F1790

Müller, Fritz & Darwin. 1881. Movements of plants. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 23 (3 March): 409. Text Image PDF F1791

Müller, Fritz & Darwin. 1881. The movements of leaves. Nature (Forwarded by Darwin) 23 (28 April): 603-4. Text Image PDF F1794

Krause, Ernst. 1881. Unconscious Memory—Mr. Samuel Butler. (Translated at the behest of Darwin) Nature 23 (27 Jan.): 288. Text A629

Müller, Fritz & Darwin. 1881. Leaves injured at night by free radiation. (Forwarded by Darwin) Nature 24 (15 Sept.): 459. Text Image PDF F1796

Van Dyck. 1882. On the modification of a race of Syrian street-dogs by means of sexual selection. With a preliminary notice by Charles Darwin. (Read 18 Apr.) Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London no. 25: 367-9. Text Image PDF F1803

Villa Franca, Baron de & Dr Glass [Glaziou]. 1882. On new varieties of the sugar-cane produced by planting in apposition. By the Baron de Villa Franca, and Dr. Glass, Superintendent of the Botanic Garden, Rio de Janeiro. Communicated by the late Charles Darwin. Journal of Botany 20: 192. Text Image F2168


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