CD is deeply pleased by AG's article on him in Nature [10 (1874): 79–81].
Is preparing book on "Drosera and Co." for the printers. Reports observations on digestion in Drosera and Pinguicula.
Down, | Beckenham, Kent.
My dear Gray
I was rejoiced to see your hand-writing again in your note of the 4
I have never been so honoured before, & I hope it will do me good & make me try to be as careful as possible; & good Heavens how difficult accuracy is. I feel a very proud man, but I hope this won't last.—
I received & read your articles in the Nation & G. Chronicle, & very interesting they were to me; but I could not conceive, (as I read them first in the G. Ch.) who could have written them. What you tell me about the trail of sweet exudation in Sarracenia beats even Orchids!
I am now hard at work getting my book on Drosera &c. ready for Printers, but it will take some time for I am always finding out new points to observe. I think you will be interested by my observations on the digestive process in Drosera; the secretion contains an acid of the acetic series & some ferment closely analogous to, but not identical with pepsin; for I have been making a long series of comparative trials. No human being will believe what I shall publish about the smallness of the doses of phosphate of ammonia which act.— Day before Yesterday I found out that Pinguicula digests & then absorbs animal matter; I know that this holds good for albumen, gelatin & insects, but I am now in the midst of my observations.—
I began reading the Madagascan squib quite gravely, & when I found it stated that Felis & Bos inhabited Madagascar, I thought it was a false story, & did not perceive it was a hoax till I came to the woman.— I had heard before of the wolf story, & know not what to think of these reiterated statements.
When you have any communication with D
Give our kindest remembrances to M
My dear Gray | Yours gratefully & proudly | Ch. Darwin