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canoe loaded with presents, and very happy.
The most curious thing is, that Jemmy, instead of recovering his own language, has taught all his friends a little English. "J. Button's canoe ” and “Jemmy's wife come,” “Give me knife," &c., was said by several of them.
We then bore away for this island-this little miserable seat of discord. We found that the Gauchos, under pretence of a revolution, had murdered and plundered all the Englishmen whom they could catch, and some of their own countryman. All the economy at home makes the foreign movements of England most contemptible. How different from old Spain. Here we, dog-in-the-manger fashion, seize an island, and leave to protect it a Union Jack; the possessor has, of course, been murdered; we now send a lieutenant with four sailors, without authority or instructions. A man-of-war, however, ventured to leave a party of marines, and by their assistance, and the treachery of some of the party, the murderers have all been taken, there being now as many prisoners as inhabitants. This island must some day become a very important haltingplace in the most turbulent sea in the world. It is mid-way between Australia and the South Sea to England; between Chili, Peru, &c., and the Rio Plata and the Rio de Janeiro. There are fine harbours, plenty of fresh water, and good beef. It would doubtless produce the coarser vegetables. In other respects it is a wretched place. A little time since, I rode across the island, and returned in four days. My excursion would have been longer, but during the whole time it blew a gale of wind, with hail and snow. There is no firewood bigger than heath, and the whole country is, more or less, an elastic peat-bog. Sleeping out at night was too miserable work to endure it for all the rocks in South America,
We shall leave this scene of iniquity in two or three days, and go to the Rio de la Sta. Cruz. One of the objects is to look at the ship's bottom. We struck rather heavily on an unknown rock off Port Desire, and some of her copper is torn off. After this is repaired the Captain has a glorious scheme;
it is to go to the very head of this river, that is probably to the Andes. It is quite unknown; the Indians tell us it is two or three hundred yards broad, and horses can nowhere ford it. I cannot imagine anything more interesting. Our plans then are to go to Fort Famine, and there we meet the Adventure, who is employed in making the Chart of the Falklands. This will be in the middle of winter, so I shall see Tierra del Fuego in her white drapery. We leave the straits to enter the Pacific by the Barbara Channel, one very little known, and which passes close to the foot of Mount Sarmiento (the highest mountain in the south, excepting Mt. !! Darwin!!). We then shall scud away for Concepcion in Chili. I believe the ship must once again steer southward, but if any one catches me there again, I will give him leave to hang me up as a scarecrow for all future naturalists, I long to be at work in the Cordilleras, the geology of this side, which I understand pretty well is so intimately connected with periods of violence in that great chain of mountains. The future is, indeed, to me a brilliant prospect. You say its very brilliancy frightens you; but really I am very careful; I may mention as a proof, in all my rambles I have never had any one accident or scrape. . . . Continue in your good custom of writing plenty of gossip; I much like hearing all about all things. Remember me most kindly to Uncle Jos, and to all the Wedgwoods. Tell Charlotte (their married names sound downright unnatural) I should like to have written to her, to have told her how well everything is going on; but it would only have been a transcript of this letter, and I have a host of animals at this minute surrounding me which all require embalming and numbering. I have not forgotten the comfort I received that day at Maer, when my mind was like a swinging pendulum. Give my best love to my father, I hope he will forgive all my extravagance, but not as a Christian, for then I suppose he would send me no more money. Good-bye, dear, to you, and all your goodly sisterhood.
Your affectionate brother,
My love to Nancy; * tell her, if she was now to see me with my great beard, she would think I was some worthy Solomon, come to sell the trinkets.
C. Darwin to C. Whitley.
Valparaiso, July 23, 1834. MY DEAR WHITLEY,
I have long intended writing, just to put you in mind that there is a certain hunter of beetles, and pounder of rocks, still in existence. Why I have not done so before I know not, but it will serve me right if you have quite forgotten me. It is a very long time since I have heard any Cambridge news; I neither know where you are living or what you are doing. I saw your name down as one of the indefatigable guardians of the eighteen hundred philosophers. I was delighted to see this, for when we last left Cambridge you were at sad variance with poor science; you seemed to think her a public prostitute working for popularity. If your opinions are the same as formerly, you would agree most admirably with Captain Fitz-Roy,—the object of his most devout abhorrence is one of the d-d scientific Whigs. As captains of men-ofwar are the greatest men going, far greater than kings or schoolmasters, I am obliged to tell him everything in my own favour. I have often said I once had a very good friend, an out-and-out Tory, and we managed to get on very well together. But he is very much inclined to doubt if ever I really was so much honoured; at present we hear scarcely anything about politics; this saves a great deal of trouble, for we all stick to our former opinions rather more obstinately than before, and can give rather fewer reasons for doing so.
I do hope you will write to me : (*H. M. S. Beagle, S. American Station 'will find me). I should much like to hear in what state you are both in body and mind. i Quién Sabe ? as the people say here (and God knows they well may, for
* His old nurse.
A NAKED FUEGIAN.
they do know little enough), if you are not a married man, and may be nursing, as Miss Austen says, little olive branches, little pledges of mutual affection. Eheu! Eheu! this puts me in mind of former visions of glimpses into futurity, where I fancied I saw retirement, green cottages, and white petticoats. What will become of me hereafter I know not; I feel like
who does not see or care how to extricate himself. That this voyage must come to a conclusion my reason tells me, but otherwise I see no end to it. It is impossible not bitterly to regret the friends and other sources of pleasure one leaves behind in England; in place of it there is much solid enjoyment, some present, but more in anticipation, when the ideas gained during the voyage can be compared to fresh ones. I find in Geology a never-failing interest, as it has been remarked, it creates the same grand ideas respecting this world which Astronomy does for the universe. We have seen much fine scenery ; that of the Tropics in its glory and luxuriance exceeds even the language of Humboldt to describe. A Persian writer could alone do justice to it, and if he succeeded he would in England be called the 'Grandfather of all liars."
But I have seen nothing which more completely astonished me than the first sight of a savage. It was a naked Fuegian, his long hair blowing about, his face besmeared
There is in their countenances an expression which I believe, to those who have not seen it, must be inconceivably wild. Standing on a rock he uttered tones and made gesticulations, than which the cries of domestic animals are far more intelligible.
When I return to England, you must take me in hand with respect to the fine arts. I yet recollect there was a man called Raffaelle Sanctus. How delightful it will be once again to see, in the Fitzwilliam, Titian's Venus. How much more than delightful to go to some good concert or fine opera. These recollections will not do. I shall not be able to-morrow to pick out the entrails of some small animal with half my usual gusto. Pray tell me some news about
Cameron, Watkins, Marinden, the two Thompsons of Trinity, Lowe, Heaviside, Matthew. Herbert I have heard from. How is Henslow getting on ? and all other good friends of dear Cambridge? Often and often do I think over those past hours, so many of which have been passed in your company. Such can never return, but their recollection can never die away. God bless you, my dear Whitley, Believe me, your most sincere friend,
C. Darwin to Miss C. Darwin.
Valparaiso, November 8, 1834. MY DEAR CATHERINE,
My last letter was rather a gloomy one, for I was not very well when I wrote it. Now everything is as bright as sunshine. I am quite well again after being a second time in bed for a fortnight. Captain Fitz-Roy very generously has delayed the ship ten days on my account, and without at the time telling me for what reason.
We have had some strange proceedings on board the Beagle, but which have ended most capitally for all hands. Captain Fitz-Roy has for the last two months been working extremely hard, and at the same time constantly annoyed by interruptions from officers of other ships; the selling the schooner and its consequences were very vexatious; the cold manner the Admiralty (solely I believe because he is a Tory) have treated him, and a thousand other, &c. &c.'s, has made him very thin and unwell. This was accompanied by a morbid depression of spirits, and a loss of all decision and resolution. . . . All that Bynoe [the Surgeon) could say, that it was merely the effect of bodily health and exhaustion after such application, would not do; he invalided, and Wickham was appointed to the command. By the instructions Wickham could only finish the survey of the southern part, and would then have been obliged to return direct to England. The