Henrietta Litchfield

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Henrietta Litchfield with her brother William Erasmus Darwin

Henrietta Emma Litchfield (née Darwin; 25 September 1843[1] - 17 December 1927[2]) was a daughter of Charles Darwin and his wife Emma Wedgwood.

Henrietta was born at Down House, Downe, Kent, in 1843. She was Darwin's third daughter and the eldest daughter to reach adulthood after the eldest, Annie, died aged 10, and a second daughter, Mary, died before she was a month old.[3] She and her brother Frank helped their father with his work, and Henrietta helped edit The Descent of Man.[4]

On 31 August 1871, she married Richard Buckley Litchfield,[5] who was born in Yarpole, near Leominster, in 1832;[6] the couple had no children. She was widowed on 11 January 1903, when Richard died in Cannes, France; [7] he was buried in the English Cemetery, Cannes.

Henrietta edited Charles Darwin's biography of his grandfather Erasmus Darwin, The Life of Erasmus Darwin, and The Autobiography of Charles Darwin, removing several contentious passages. She also edited her mother's private papers (Emma Darwin: A Century of Family Letters) (1904). She responded to the Lady Hope Story that her father had undergone a deathbed conversion by writing an article in The Christian in 1922 saying it "[had] no foundation whatever". She died in Burrows Hill, Gomshall, Surrey, aged 84. An obituary was in The Times[8]

She is buried in St Mary the Virgin Churchyard, Downe, Kent. Nearby is Down House, the home of the Darwin family. Members of the Darwin family who are also buried in St Mary the Virgin Churchyard, Downe, Kent are: Bernard Darwin and his wife Elinor Monsell; Charles Waring Darwin; Elizabeth Darwin; Emma Darwin, Charles Darwin's wife; Erasmus Alvey Darwin; Mary Eleanor Darwin; Charles Darwin himself is buried in Westminster Abbey.

VIAF[edit]

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External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Freeman, R.B. (1978). Charles Darwin, a companion. Folkestone, Eng.: W. Dawson. ISBN 0208017399. 
  2. ^ Burke's landed gentry. London: Burke's Peerage. 1952. 
  3. ^ Freeman, R.B. (1978). Charles Darwin, a companion. Folkestone, Eng.: W. Dawson. ISBN 0208017399. 
  4. ^ "Online Calendar". Darwin Correspondence Project. Retrieved 8 March 2013. 
  5. ^ Freeman, R.B. (1978). Charles Darwin, a companion. Folkestone, Eng.: W. Dawson. ISBN 0208017399. 
  6. ^ "Alumni Cantabrigienses". A Cambridge alumni database. 
  7. ^ "Alumni Cantabrigienses". A Cambridge alumni database. 
  8. ^ The Times, Saturday, Dec 24, 1927; pg. 10; Issue 44773; col B Mrs. Litchfield. Darwin's Daughter And Helper. A correspondent. Category: Obituaries