Discusses rudimentary sixth toe of frogs.
Down. | Bromley. | Kent. S.E.
My dear Sir
I am truly obliged for all the trouble which you have taken for me & for your
very interesting note.— I had only vaguely heard it
said that Frogs had a rudiment of a sixth toe; had I known that such great men had
looked to the point, I should not have dreamed of looking myself. The rudiment sent to you was from a full-grown frog; so that if these bones are
the two Cuneiforms they must, I sh
With very sincere thanks | believe me | My dear Sir | Yours very faithfully | Ch. Darwin
- f1 4559.f1The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter to T. H. Huxley, 3 July .
- f2 4559.f2The letter from Flower has not been found, but see n. 3, below.
- f3 4559.f3Having learned that Peter Mark Roget had stated that frogs have the rudiment of a sixth toe (Roget 1834, 1: 544), and having heard other such reports, CD had dissected a specimen, asking Thomas Henry Huxley to give his opinion of the dissection (see letters to T. H. Huxley, 16 February  and 27 June ). Huxley declined, but offered to ask Flower to answer CD's questions (see letter from T. H. Huxley, 2 July 1863, and letter to T. H. Huxley, 3 July ). The `great men' referred to in Flower's letter have not been identified; however, see Variation 2: 12--17.
- f4 4559.f4Henry Lettington.
- f5 4559.f5CD referred briefly to the possible occurrence in frogs of a rudimentary sixth toe, in his extensive discussion of polydactylism and inheritance in Variation 2: 12--17 (on p. 14).