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Letter 795

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

29 Nov 1844

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    Would like to visit on the weekend of 7–8 December.

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    Differences in floras of St Helena and Ascension.


West Park Kew

Novr 29. 1844.

My dear Darwin

I am ashamed of not having written before, but have not been able to tell when I should be able to get down to Bromley, on account of Mr Bentham's coming here next week & Profr. Henslow the following. I find however that I have Saturday & Sunday 7th & 8th to spare: if perfectly convenient to Mrs Darwin & yourself I should much enjoy a run down & look at your habitat. Do you want any observations made in New Zeald: I have a friend now there, a fair naturalist & acute careful observer, who is going to the Middle & Southern Islds he is a Surgeon R.N. now acting Colonial Secretary to Gr Fitzroy.— We had a long letter from Capt Sulivan the other day from the Plate—

Brown (in Congo) says that the level of the sea in Tropics is not so rich in species as the temperate zone (or words to that effect), I never remarked that any one had said so before.

I find, even down to the lower orders, the plants of Ascension are totally different from those of St Helena. this is most remarkable as regards the Ferns.—of which there are 9 Ascension sp. only 2 (I think) of which are St Helena's.. Even the Jungermanniæ are different!— I expect no parallel to this is on record.

Ever your's most truly | Jos D Hooker

    Footnotes Add

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    f1 795.f1
    Andrew Sinclair, who was colonial secretary in New Zealand, 1844–56. Robert FitzRoy was governor, 1843–5 (Mellersh 1968, pp. 207–35).
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    f2 795.f2
    Bartholomew James Sulivan, previously a lieutenant in the Beagle, had been appointed captain of the surveying vessel Philomel on active duty in the Falklands and on the coast of South America from 1842 to 1846.
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    f3 795.f3
    Brown 1818, p. 422.
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