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Letter 3512

Darwin, C. R. to Oliver, Daniel

20 [Apr 1862]

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    Requests Oxalis acetosella, which he suspects is dimorphic.




Dear Oliver

Hooker says you pass daily some Oxalis acetosella. Will you oblige me by gathering a dozen or score of flowers from different plants, & if possible plants growing a little apart.— I find some evidence of dimorphism in the plants here, as in Primula, & much want to see plants from some other station. The plant does not grow here within my walking distance.— Would you send me the flowers by Post in a little tin box, with a bit of damp blotting paper.—

Yours very sincerely | C. Darwin

    Footnotes Add

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    f1 3512.f1
    The date is established by the relationship to the letter from Daniel Oliver, 23 April 1862.
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    f2 3512.f2
    Emma Darwin's diary (DAR 242) records that Joseph Dalton Hooker spent the Easter weekend, 17 to 21 April 1862, at Down House. In his review of CD's paper, `Dimorphic condition in Primula', Oliver cited Louis Eugène Michalet's observation that flowers of Oxalis acetosella produced early in the season differed from those produced in the summer ([Oliver] 1862c, p. 239). Oliver had sent CD the manuscript of his review (see letter from Daniel Oliver, 14 April 1862).
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    f3 3512.f3
    There are notes on Oxalis acetosella, dated 17--27 April 1862, in DAR 109 (ser. 2): 4--5. See also Forms of flowers, pp. 181--3.
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