Publisher Information: Edinburgh: 1851.
Miller, Hugh (1802-56). Autograph letter signed to Edward Charlesworth (1803-93). 1 page plus integral blank. Edinburgh, 21 February 1851. 201 x 126 mm. Small tears along fold not affecting text, traces of former mounting, light soiling along folds but very good. Docketed by recipient.
From Scottish paleontologist and geologist Hugh Miller, author of works of popular science including The Old Red Sandstone (1841), Footprints of the Creator (1850) and The Testimony of the Rocks (1856), to fellow paleontologist Edward Charlesworth, editor of the Magazine of Natural History.
"I am glad to see you have added a […] shell column to your columns of British Fossils. Please set me down as a subscriber for a £2 .. .. set; as also for a £2 .. .. set of the fossils of the Mountain Limestone . . . I am at present engaged with printers and woodengravers in getting up a fourth edition of my little work the “Footprints” which will contain prints of a few curious unique organisms picked up since I had the pleasure of seeing you in Autumn last . . ."
Although he had little formal scientific training, Miller made important contributions to paleontology including the discovery of several previously unknown species of fossil fish. A deeply religious man, Miller believed that “the fossil record confirmed, in broad outline, the cosmic drama depicted symbolically in the Bible” (Dictionary of Scientific Biography). His geological studies had convinced him of the Earth’s great age, but he held that the fossil record represented separate creations rather than the transmutation of species over time. His Footprints of the Creator was intended as a rebuttal of the evolutionary theory put forth in Robert Chambers’s Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation (1844). The fourth edition of Footprints, mentioned in Miller’s letter, came out in 1853. Miller’s letter is on the letterhead of The Witness, a Scottish evangelical newspaper of which he was the editor.Book Id: 43015