POWELL, Baden. 12768

£275

Description

Autograph Letter Signed, to Professor Phillips at York, about various additions to be made in Powell’s forthcoming book, inserting Phillips’ “valuable contribution” in an appendix to Powell’s work, insisting on publishing it despite pressure from the printers to agree to proofs. 3 pp. 9 x 7 inches, torn at seal opening, minor clean tears, in generally good clean condition. Oxford, 3 December 1837. “I really think such a communication should not be suppressed.” Baden Powell (1796-1860), mathematician, father of Robert Baden-Powell. Baden Powell was sympathetic to evolutionary theory before Charles Darwin had revealed his ideas. Powell defended Charles Lyell, the geologist, and defended also the evolutionary ideas in Robert Chambers’ book Vestiges of Creation (1844). Powell mentions Lyell in this letter: “I found the printers more expeditious than I had calculated & therefore was obliged to send the sheet to press before I recd. your letter – trusting to my not having very widely misunderstood what I had already collected from reading your work & those of Lyell & others.” Powell published two books at this time: History of natural philosophy from the earliest periods to the present time (1837), and The connection of natural and divine truth: or, The study of the inductive philosophy, considered as subservient to theology (1838). Professor John Phillips (1800-1874), geologist, Professor of Geology at Oxford, contributed papers on many other subjects to scientific literature, including astronomy, particularly on sunspots and the planet Mars.