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Letter 4561

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

12 July [1864]
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    Summary Add

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    Ernst Haeckel writes that young German scientists are enthusiastic for natural selection.

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    Did JDH write the article in Natural History Review on trees not producing flowers ["Botanical lesson books", (1864): 355–69]?

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    Encourages Harvey to publish on his "disagreeable" monster plants.

Transcription

Down. | Bromley. | Kent. S.E.

July 12th

My dear old friend—

I write merely to thank you for your note & to say that I have not heard from the Neilgherry planter; so on your return, if I do not hear first, will you direct your agent to look out for a ship for J. Scott.—

Good Lord what a day's work you had on that on which you wrote to me.— I do truly hope that the mountain air (in which there certainly is a strange charm) may do you a deal of good & Mrs. Hooker.— It is great news that you have given up the Examinership: I am very curious to hear whether you wrote the pleasant article in N. H. R. on Beech & Oak trees never producing flowers.—

Remember me very kindly to Harvey & stir him up to publish his disagreeable monstrous plants.

How glad I shall be to see you here, when you can come with some ease.—

Farewell   I have no news of any kind,— I do an hour or two's work daily at my climbers & hope in a month to finish—

By the way I had a grand letter this morning from a very good German Zoologist E. Haëcke, who maintains that all the best of the younger men are enthusiasts for natural selection, & that Germany will soon beat England in this respect. Hurrah & Farewell | Ever yours | affectionately | C. Darwin

    Footnotes Add

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    f1 4561.f1
    The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from J. D. Hooker, 5 July 1864.
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    f2 4561.f2
    Letter from J. D. Hooker, 5 July 1864.
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    f3 4561.f3
    See letter from J. D. Hooker, 5 July 1864 and n. 4. CD refers to John Scott. Hooker's shipping agent was Henry Taylor (see letter from J. D. Hooker, [29 July 1864] and n. 2).
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    f4 4561.f4
    The Hookers were in County Wicklow, Ireland (see letter from J. D. Hooker, 5 July 1864 and n. 3).
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    f5 4561.f5
    See letter from J. D. Hooker, 5 July 1864 and n. 7.
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    f6 4561.f6
    CD refers to [J. D. Hooker?] 1864c, a review of Daniel Oliver's Lessons in elementary botany (Oliver 1864b). In a footnote, the author wrote (p. 363 n.), `One examiner informs us that he has been not unfrequently told by medical students under examination, that such trees as Oaks, Beeches, &c. have never any flowers.' Hooker was examiner in botany for the medical service of the Indian army (L. Huxley ed. 1918, 1: 387).
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    f7 4561.f7
    See letter from W. H. Harvey, 19 May 1864 and n. 4. The Hookers were visiting William Henry Harvey and his wife in Ireland (see letter from J. D. Hooker, 5 July 1864 and n. 3).
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    f8 4561.f8
    Hooker visited CD at Down on Sunday 24 July 1864 (letter from J. D. Hooker to Asa Gray, 29 July 1864, Gray Herbarium of Harvard University).
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    f9 4561.f9
    The manuscript of `Climbing plants' was largely finished by 13 September, although CD was still making changes during the last months of the year (see, for example, letter to Asa Gray, 29 October [1864], and letter to J. D. Hooker, 4 December [1864]; see also `Journal' (Correspondence vol. 12, Appendix II)). The paper was sent to the Linnean Society on 18 January 1865, and was read on 2 February 1865 (see Correspondence vol. 13, letter to J. D. Hooker, 19 January [1865]).
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    f10 4561.f10
    See letter from Ernst Haeckel, 9 [July 1864].
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