A tale (which also involves Darwin) about a pair of leather boots, dated back to the beginning of 1800

Leather boots, which belonged to Adam Sedgwick, are back home. He was a scientist and he was considered one of the forerunners of Geology, and mentor of Charles Darwin as well, with whom he had a controversy when they published his famous essay, On the origin of Species. This is a funny tale, which dates to 1827 at least, about a pair of leather boots. At that time, Reverend Adam Sedgwick, 42 years old, a well-known Professor of Geology at the University of Cambridge, organized a geological tour around Scotland. At the end of his journey, as the story goes, he stopped over at Kinnordy, at one of his friends’, Charles Lyell. When he left, he forgot his shoes over there. His leather boots were kept, till a short while ago, in the Kinnordy library. Now the Gifford family, descendant of the Lyell one, who still reside in the same house based in Kinnordy, has decided to donate the boots to the University of Cambridge Geology Museum: this year, in fact, they will be celebrating the 200th anniversary of Sedgwick’s appointment as Woodwardian Professor. Sedgwick’s leather boots had been made by his shoemaker, and their sole was reinforced through some nails. Professor Sedgwick must have worn them quite a lot, for many years, considering how worn out soles are. Their conditions are still pretty good. They are now on display at the University of Cambridge Sedgwick museum.


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