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Darwin's doubts

'Your mind and time are full of the most interesting subjects,' says Emma Darwin in a letter to her husband Charles. But, she asks, do they stop him considering religious questions fairly?

The affectionate letter, written in 1839 to voice Emma's response to Charles's religious doubts, is part of a new online archive of the complete works of Charles Darwin, launched by Cambridge University ( It gives a rare glimpse of Darwin's religious views as he formulated his theory of evolution.

'May not the habit in scientific pursuits of believing nothing till it is proved, influence your mind too much in other things which cannot be proved in the same way[?]' she asks.

At the end, another hand has added, 'When I am dead, know that many times, I have kissed and cryed over this. C. D.'