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Letter 3341

Darwin, C. R. to Hooker, J. D.

[9 Dec 1861?]

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    Summary Add

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    Henri Lecoq's miserable book on plant geography [Étude sur la géographie botanique de l'Europe (1854–8)].

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    H. W. Bates's pleasure at meeting JDH.



My dear Hooker

Lecoq is a miserable book—, dreadfully spun out, with maudlin speculations & a great dearth of precise facts: I do not believe it would be worth your having, & as here & there, miles apart, I find a reference or fact worth keeping, I will keep the monstrous work.—

Bates writes he spent with you 3 or 4 of the most agreeable hours he ever spent in his life.—

C. Darwin

You were, of course, quite right. Bonatea does not at all favour the splitting & subsequent fusion of sepals & petals— The vessels run in Bonatea as in Habenearia.

I cannot get out of my head that these cases throw great doubt on value of vessels in regard to homologies.

[Enclosure: 1]

Upper petal Upper Sepal Lower Sepal Labellum ovarium

This seems structure of Bonatea speciosa & you will see what a little change in adhesion would almost convert it into Habenaria.—

    Footnotes Add

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    f1 3341.f1
    CD refers to Lecoq 1854--8, which he had recently purchased. See letters to J. D. Hooker, 25 November [1861] and 1 December [1861].
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    f2 3341.f2
    Bates apparently told CD about his visit with Hooker in the part of his letter of [1 December] 1861 that is now missing (see letter to H. W. Bates, 3 December [1861]).
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    f3 3341.f3
    See letters to J. D. Hooker, 10 November [1861] and 14 November [1861].
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    f4 3341.f4
    The diagram has been reproduced at 60% of its original size.
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