Marvels that seeds from the lump of clay on the partridge's foot have germinated. At Zoological Society [J. E.?] Gray ridiculed him. Now Frank Buckland would like to see the specimen.
Magdalene College, | Cambridge.
My dear Sir,
Pray accept my best thanks for your obliging letter of the 29
I am very glad to find you agree in thinking that the clay accumulated by degrees—
When I exhibited the specimen at the Zoological Society's meeting, Dr. Gray
was very much inclined to ridicule the whole matter—and to believe that both M
Some time ago M
I was extremely sorry last autumn to hear of your serious illness—and regret now to find that you are still suffering— Allow me to hope that you will speedily be restored to perfect health, and enabled to prosecute your researches—
Believe me, my dear Sir, | Yours very truly and obliged | Alfred Newton
Charles Darwin, Esq. F.R.S.
I have lately been much engaged in compiling an account of the wonderful visitation of Syrrhaptes paradoxus last year— I find but one way of accounting for that extraordinary phenomenon which is on the principles you have been the first to discover—
- f1 4446.f1Letter to Alfred Newton, 29 March .
- f2 4446.f2See letter to Alfred Newton, 29 March  and nn. 2--4.
- f3 4446.f3In his letter of 31 October 1863 (Correspondence vol. 11), Newton mentioned that when he exhibited the partridge foot at the Zoological Society meeting on 21 April 1863, John Edward Gray, insisted that the earth around the foot had not been gradually aggregated (see also Newton 1863, and letter to Alfred Newton, 29 March ).
- f4 4446.f4Henry Stevenson, secretary of the Norfolk and Norwich Museum, had obtained the specimen from a taxidermist in Norwich in 1860 (see Newton 1863).
- f5 4446.f5In his letter of 31 October 1863 (Correspondence vol. 11), Newton mentioned Francis Trevelyan Buckland's remarks on the partridge leg in the Field, 16 October 1863, p. 368.
- f6 4446.f6Newton refers to the sudden migration in 1863 of large numbers of Pallas's sand-grouse to western Europe, 4000 miles from the western limits of their ordinary range. In his account, published in Ibis, Newton suggested that the migration was the result of a population increase in the species in its native territory; he referred to natural selection, arguing that the species was `probably the conquering hero of a long ``struggle for existence'' ' (Newton 1864, pp. 219--20).