The Quarterly Review, Vol. 166

The Quarterly Review, Vol. 166

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Excerpt from The Quarterly Review, Vol. 166: January April, 1888

Whether we deem the expectation of which we have just spoken, to be justified or disappointed by the work whose title stands at the head of this article, is a matter of which we shall leave our readers to judge b the tone of our remarks as we proceed. There is no won er indeed that the expectation should have been high, when the circumstance is taken into consideration, that Mr. Darwin's biographer was announced to be that one of his accomplished sons who, from his natural tastes and education, had been most associated with his father's labours, and whose name had publicly appeared as that of his father's assistant on the title-page of one of his father's works. Mr. Francis Darwin has already for some years been recognized as an able expositor of the new school of botanical science, and the merit of his original investigations had obtained for him, in the year of his father's death, admission into the Royal Society. In his attempt to fulfil the pious task he had undertaken, he has had the great advantage of an autobiographical sketch by the subject of his memoir, which forms the second chapter of the first volume. To this we shall presently return, since the personal recollections of almost any man, written by himself, possess an interest far greater than that with which the pen of the most expert biographer can invest the life of another.

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