| Manchester 10 June 1869.

My dear child,

 Marx hielt sich vom 25. Mai bis 14. Juni 1869 mit seiner Tochter Eleanor bei Engels in Manchester auf. Eleanor blieb vermutlich bis Anfang Oktober in Manchester.
I was firmly resolved to leave Manchester yesterday
. But, on the pretext, that, during the first week of my stay, I had been an invalid, Engels insisted so much upon my remaining here till Monday next, that I had to give way. He is really too kind towards me to seriously oppose such a whim on his part.

On our three day’s trip to the Devonshire Arms, near the Bolton abbey, I made the acquaintance of a most strange fellow, Mr. Dakyns, a geologist, who lives transitorily in that part of Yorkshire in order to make of it a geological survey. En passent, you ought to know that a geological map is taken up of all England, under the orders of government, and under the leadership of Professor Ramsay, of Jermyn street. Moore is himself a geologist. By him Engels and Schorlemmer became acquainted with Dakyns who lives in a farmer house, inmidst of a Yorkshire wilderness. That farmer’s house was also an old abbey, and the lower part of it still serves as a chapel. It was to see Dakyns that we set out for that part of the world. D. looks much like a German peasant, of stunted side size , with a face always grinning a broad smile, something monkeyish in the formation of his head, nothing British about him save the protruding upper set of teeth which reminded me of the late Mrs. Seiler. His dress is about that of a slovenly and “underdressed” farm servant, of utmost negligence. Cravatte and such paraphernalia of civilisation | he is a stranger too. The first impression he produces makes upon you is that of a boorish clown whose good heart leaps through his eyes and grins on his lips, but you would give him no credit for intellect. Still, this is a highly scientific man, even an enthusiast for his science, and whose name begins already to pierce through a big valley of rivals. He is naive like a child, without the least pretention, always ready to communicate his scientific discoveries to the first comer wanting to pump him out. There is in fact always a couple of other geological surveyors swarming to and from him for the express purpose to beat money out of him, or fame, by appropriating his researches. In fact, we found him in the company of two such fellows, one of whom, named Ward, was a timid youth, and the other, named Green, a bold, pushing man. We had a dinner on his farm—on Sunday last— under in the room directly lying over the chapel. The room had been(?) evidently formerly served as an assembly-room of the monks, big walled (ich meine, mit dicken Mauern umgeben), with a look out to magnificent trees, and to an amphitheatrical group of mountains, the one overtopping the other, and wrapt in that blue veil  Pseudonym von Charlotte Brontë.
Currer Bell
is so delighted with. During the very marvellous(?) merry, and in spite of his its rusticity comfortable dinner, the sing-song of the youth in the chapel, coming from the depth, intercepted by the big walls, and sounding as from a far away place, reminded me somewhat of the  Bezug zu Goethes Faust oder Charles Gounods Faust-Oper „Margarethe“.
Christian song in Faust

Well, our friend Dakyns is a sort of  Figur aus dem Roman "Felix Holt, the Radical" (1866) von George Eliot.
Felix Holt
, less the affectation of that man, and plus the knowledge. (By the by, the Tories here say “Felix Holt, the rascal”, instead of “the radical”.) He invites once a week the factory lads, | treats them to beer and tobacco, and chats with them on social questions. He is a “naturwüchsiger” communist. I could of course not forbear making a little fun of him and warning him to fight shy of any meeting with  Mary Ann Evans (Pseudonym: George Eliot).
Mrs. Elliot
who would at once lay hold if him, and make literary property out of him. He had already written to Moore that the wanted to enter the “International”. So I brought him a card and he made a donation, as his entrance fee, of 10 sh., the which is a sum for him. These men get only 150 £ of a year, and have very hard work, mentally and bodily. The Government could not afford to get these men at th such a price, if it was a mere matter of competition, but most of them are full of “geological” zeal and improve this opportunity afforded them of making researches. They are provided with cards which bind every landowner, farmer, and so forth, to allow them to walk over their estates and farms, and look into the formation of the soil. Dakyns, who has a good deal of farcical humour about himself, often enters into a farm, takes out his instruments, and sets at working, when the farmer comes up, growls at the impudent intruder, and bids him to pack himself off, lest he want to become acquainted with the teeth of his dog or the momentum of his flail. Dakyns affects not to mind him, proceeds in his business, and provokes the boor by some bad jokes. When the comedy has been approaching to a certain climax, he pulls out his card, and the cerberus is softened. During our stay he gave me to read in the nick of time the last number of the Fortnightly review T. H. Huxley: The Scientific Aspects on Positivism. In: The Fortnightly Review. Bd. 5. Nr. 30, 1. Juni 1869. Siehe MECW 43 (1988), S. 293 Anm. a.
an article of Huxley
where he merrily thrashes old Congreve. Dakyns is also a declared | enemy of the Comtistes or Positivistes. He is of my opinion that there is nothing positive about them except their arrogance. As to my friend Beesly, he mentioned him amongst the “doctrinaires” who mistake their fanciful crotchets for science.— J. S. Mill: Thornton on Labour and its Claims. In: The Fortnightly Review. Bd. 5. Nr. 30, 1. Juni 1869. Siehe MECW 43 (1988), S. 293 Anm. b.
In the same number of the Fortnightly is the second article of Mill on Thornton’s Capital and Labor
. I saw from the criticism that both are equally small fry.—Dakyns is a neighbour of ours. That is to say, he lives at Kilburn, (when in London), with his father, a lawyer.

Yesterday evening I had the inavoidable tea at  Louisa und Eduard Gumpert.
. Mrs. Gumpert has been much affected by the teeth of time. I have never before witnessed a more rapid change. The hypocrisy of a Greek nose has given way to the true Jewish type, everything about her looks rather shrivelled and dried up, and the voice has that guttural sound which the selected people is to some degree cursed with. Speaking of the disagreeableness to be in a xx(?) omnibus, or at public firework, or xx(?) in the theatre even near to the pit—all this because of the bad smells of the vile multitude, she said: “I like the clean million, but not the dirty million”. I affected to have understood, “clear million”, and said that it was a very common predilection with mankind to prefer a clear million of pounds sterling to any million of men, whether washed or unwashed.

And now my dear child adio. Give my best wishes to all. On Monday I shall positively leave. As to Tussy, she looks quite blooming, and a little longer stay at Manchester will do her good.

Old Nick.


Karl Marx an Jenny Marx (Tochter) in London. Manchester, Donnerstag, 10. Juni 1869. In: Marx-Engels-Gesamtausgabe digital. Hg. von der Internationalen Marx-Engels-Stiftung. Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Berlin. URL: http://megadigital.bbaw.de/briefe/detail.xql?id=M0001057. Abgerufen am 08.02.2023.