Asks for Gabriel Bibron's address. He has two questions about snakes in S. America for which he wants answers, as he is preparing a new edition of his Journal of researches.
My dear Bell
Would you kindly take the trouble to send me a line (to 7. Park St. Grosvenor Square)
to tell me Bibron's address, without indeed, which
I am right, in thinking that you sent all my snakes to Bibron?
My reason for wanting to know is that I am preparing a second Edit. of my Journal for Murray's Colonial Library.
I hope you are well; does not this rain gladden your heart, when you think of the meadows of Selbourne?
Pray give my kind compliments to M
- f1 848.f1The date range is that of the composition of Journal of researches 2d ed. (‘Journal’; Correspondence vol. 3, Appendix II).
- f2 848.f2Gabriel Bibron. Bell had sent CD's Beagle collection of snakes to him (see Reptiles, p. vi) for use in Duméril and Bibron 1834–54, vols. 6 and 7: in vol. 6, p. xii, the authors acknowledge having received specimens from Bell.
- f3 848.f3Trigonocephalus was the then accepted term for a genus which included pit vipers. The snake in question interested CD because, though it lacks a rattle, it displays the rattlesnake's habit of rapidly vibrating the end of its tail when irritated or surprised: ‘showing how every character, even though it may be in some degree independent of structure, has a tendency to vary by slow degrees’ (Journal of researches 2d ed., p. 96). In a note at the end of the volume (p. 506) CD reports that Bibron thought it to be a new species, which he proposed to call T. crepitans.
- f4 848.f4‘There is one snake which is numerous; it is identical, as I am informed by M. Bibron, with the Psammophis Temminckii from Chile’ (Journal of researches 2d ed., p. 381).
- f5 848.f5Bell, a great admirer of Gilbert White, had purchased White's house, ‘The Wakes’, in Selborne, Hampshire.