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Grant Allen to W.T. Stead

(October 6, 18??)

2 Priory Gardens, Bedford Park, Chiswick S.W. Oct. 6 [18??]

Dear Sir,

Many thanks for your note. I will read and review Darwin’s new book at the earliest possible moment—as soon as I receive it. I have been a little slow lately owing to ill health, but on Monday I settle down at Hastings for the winter, and hope to be more regular in future.

Colonists are the thinnest-skinned people on earth. I have lived more than half my life in two colonies—Canada and Jamaica—and only a quarter of it in England: yet I never wrote anything about either colony in print without hurting some tender susceptibilities, whereas I never have had anybody... [illegible] ...with what I had to say about England, though I suppose, like other people, I must often make mistakes. In this particular case, however, I think I right and my critic wrong. It is all a relative question as to what you consider civilised and what you consider wild; and writing for a mainly English audience I spoke from an English standpoint. But perhaps it would be best to suppress my two tentative political articles, which only express the views I have derived from my own friends and correspondents—landowners in Canadian country towns.

I should be very glad if you could kindly spare me five minutes for a short talk on Saturday or Monday. I am now in town for two or three days, and not likely to be so again till Spring, and there are one or two questions I should like to ask as to possible future work.

Yours very faithfully,

Grant Allen.

Webmaster's note... My thanks to Peter Morton (PhD) for this contribution. For more on Grant Allen, visit Peter's website here