Down house (1842-1882)
Aware that his theory might rock the world, Darwin spent many years before and after the publication of On the Origin of Species at Down House – his countryside home in the outskirts of London – testing and strengthening his theory.
While living there, Darwin carried out a thorough investigation addressing numerous subjects, such as the behavior of his own children, his dogs, his vines, his carnivorous plants, his orchids and his worms.
“Erasmus. Darwin: born. Dec. 27th. 1839. — During first week yawned, stretched himself just like old person — chiefly upper extremities; hiccupped, sneezes, sucked. Surface of warm hand placed to face seemed immediately to give wish of sucking […]. Cried and squalled, but no tears. Touching sole of foot with spill of paper (when exactly one week old), it jerked it away very suddenly and curled its toes, like person tickled, evidently subject to tickling.”
— Charles Darwin
Notebook of Observations on the Darwin Children, 1839-1856