Sends Dallas' specimen of indexing [for Variation].
Asks CD's opinion of likelihood of a hybrid of ass and bull, reported in a MS of a journey to Asia Minor he is reading.
50, Albemarle S
My Dear Sir
Our thoughts about the Index jumped together, as they say, as you will perceive by the
enclosed from M
Here is a matter wch may interest you—not a ``Cock & a Bull'' but an Ass & a Bull— I have a MS journey in Asia Minor—the writer of wch a respectable American Missionary—met with the offspring of these two animals & has made a drawing of the specimen & states that it is of common occurrence in that country.
I must confess—I do not believe it & if you do not—I shall advise the author to suppress the phenomenon
I am | My Dear Sir | Yours very faithfully | John Murray
Chas Darwin Esq
- f1 5661.f1The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from W. S. Dallas, 4 November 1867.
- f2 5661.f2The enclosure has not been found. Murray had engaged William Sweetland Dallas to prepare the index for Variation (see letter from John Murray, 23 September , and letter to John Murray, 19 October ).
- f3 5661.f3In his letter of 19 September , Murray had told CD that he would ask for a sample of the index for CD's approval. The specimen CD received was returned to Dallas and has not been found (see letter to John Murray, 2 November ).
- f4 5661.f4Murray refers to a manuscript later published by him as Travels in little-known parts of Asia Minor: with illustrations of biblical literature and researches in archaeology by Henry John Van Lennep (Van Lennep 1870). The published version did not contain the `ass and bull' story.