Glad BDW has proved his case on dimorphism of Cynips.
Interested in galls
and BDW's Cicada articles [Proc. Entomol. Soc. Philadelphia (1864)].
Down. | Beckenham | Kent. S.E.
My dear Sir
I have received your kind letter of March 12
I am very glad that you have proved your case about the dimorphism of the Cynips.— I will send by this Post the specimens to Fred. Smith of Brit. Museum, either for his private or the public collection as he may think best.—
What an admirable Journal your new one is: I have read two numbers, but not as yet that on Wasps, but I shall begin it this evening.— Nothing in my opinion can be better than the two articles on Galls & the Cicadas. That is a most perplexing case about the 2 forms of the Cicadas.— The galls interest me much, not so much as galls, but as a proof what organic changes extraneous matter can cause.— There are numbers of curious facts, for example the sterility of the Hateful Grasshopper.—
I will not so much trespass on your kindness as to accept the
rare back numbers; but if you publish anything which you think
would interest me (& you can judge almost as well as I can
myself) I sh
My dear Sir | Yours sincerely | Ch. Darwin
P.S. I have just finished your Wasp paper— it is capital very interesting & very amusing.—
- f1 5482.f1The year is established by the publication date of the American Entomologist articles sent by Walsh (see n. 2, below).
- f2 5482.f2Walsh's letter has not been found. CD refers to issues 4, 6, and 7 of the first volume of the American Entomologist, dated December 1868, February 1869, and March 1869 respectively. The issues are in the Darwin Pamphlet Collection--CUL; four articles by Walsh and Charles Valentine Riley (B. D. Walsh and Riley 1868a--b and 1869a--b) are annotated (see nn.3, 5, 6, and 8, below).
- f3 5482.f3Experimental proof that the gall wasp Cynips quercus aciculata, hitherto regarded as a distinct species, was one of the two female forms of C. q. spongifica was presented in B. D. Walsh and Riley 1869a, p. 103; Walsh had explained the experiment in his letter to CD of 12 November 1865 (Correspondence vol. 13). For Walsh's initial speculation on the subject, see B. D. Walsh 1864, pp. 447--8, and Correspondence vol. 12.
- f4 5482.f4Frederick Smith was an entomologist in the British Museum.
- f5 5482.f5Walsh and Riley started the American Entomologist in 1868 (see Correspondence vol. 16, letter from B. D. Walsh, 29 August 1868). The article on wasps is B. D. Walsh and Riley 1869b.
- f6 5482.f6In `The periodical cicada' (B. D. Walsh and Riley 1868a), the authors described Cicada septemdecim (now Magicicada septendecim), which emerged every seventeen years, and a cognate species, which emerged every thirteen years; see also Correspondence vol. 16, letter from B. D. Walsh, 29 August 1868 and n. 17, and letter to B. D. Walsh, 31 October 1868.
- f7 5482.f7CD had cited Walsh's earlier paper on galls (B. D. Walsh 1866) in Variation 2: 282--5.
- f8 5482.f8In `The hateful or Colorado grasshopper', Walsh and Riley discussed the sterility of the grasshoppers born on the plains; the fertile grasshoppers migrating from mountain canyons were destructive but their young ate little and did not breed ([B. D. Walsh and Riley] 1868b). The species, Melanopus spretus, also known as the Rocky Mountain locust, is now extinct (Lockwood 2004).
- f9 5482.f9Though no further correspondence with Walsh has been found, issues of the American Entomologist for April, September, and October 1869 are in the Darwin Archive--CUL.
- f10 5482.f10See n. 5, above.