George Darwin: Diary of a journey to South Africa

Scope and Content

A typescript diary of a Darwin's visit to South Africa with the British Association, 62 pages, with inserted items, including newscuttings, letters, menus, programmes and photographs. At the front of the volume is a photograph of the party, including Darwin and his wife, leaving Southampton on the Saxon. At the back of the volume is a certificate of the honorary degree of Doctor of Science presented to Darwin by the University of the Cape of Good Hope.

Administrative / Biographical History

Sir George Howard Darwin (1845-1912), mathematician and astronomer, was born at Down House, Downe, Kent, on 9 July 1845, the son of the naturalist Charles Darwin. He was educated at Clapham Grammar School, then Trinity College, Cambridge (B.A., 1868), where he was a Fellow, 1868-1878. He was Plumian Professor of Astronomy and Experimental Philosophy at Cambridge, 1883-1912. Darwin studied the earth in his early work before examining the earth-moon system and the influence of the tides. He became a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1879, and his collected works were published in 1907-1911. He died at Newnham Grange, Cambridge, on 7 December 1912.

Access Information

Open for consultation by holders of a Reader's Ticket valid for the Manuscripts Reading Room.

Acquisition Information

Presented by Sir Geoffrey Keynes, 1977.


Description compiled by Robert Steiner, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives. The biographical history was compiled with reference to the entry on George Darwin in H.W.C. Davis and J.R.H. Weaver, eds, Dictionary of national biography, 1912-1921 (Oxford University, 1927), pp. 144-147.

Other Finding Aids


Related Material

Cambridge University Library holds others papers relating to George Darwin, MSS.Add.5749, 5750, 7045, 7046 and 7909.

Corporate Names

Geographical Names