From Emma Darwin to W. E. Darwin [15 July? 1852]



My dear Willy

I have left you a long time without a letter. Etty George & Edmund have been very happy. They rode the pony & donkey one day. I have ridden the donkey twice & she goes very well in the road. we leave the foal at home

Papa is in hopes that Mr Ainslie will be punished for working his horses with sore places on their necks. An officer of the Society for preventing cruelty to animals was sent for by your father to see what state his horses were in & he is going to have him up before a magistrate & his ploughman also, but he is afraid that only the man may be punished & not the master.

Mr Appleton sent a box of Maple Sugar from America for all of you children. It looks exactly like pieces of Brown sweet soap. It is sugar made of the juice of the Maple tree from America. We gave George a piece of it on his birthday calling it Brown soap & it puzzled him very much. I gave him a kite & Etty gave him sixpence. It made me very melancholy to think of our dear Annie's last birthday & putting her book by her plate at breakfast. Georgy's kite flew so high in the air that it required Parslow & James to pull it as hard as they could to get it down. It is torn now & I am going to mend it. Yesterday evening we saw a balloon a good way off. Most of us went to the top of the house & saw it come down near High Elms. Your father looked through his telescope & saw "Erin go Bragh" written on the silk. White minor can tell you what that means.

Goodbye my dear old fellow. The holidays will soon be here.

your affectionate mother | E. D.

Please cite as “FL-0375,” in Ɛpsilon: The Darwin Family Letters Collection accessed on 1 December 2023,