Thinks JDH's explanation of polymorphism on volcanic islands is probably correct.
Proposes experimental test to see whether alpine form of a plant is inherited like a true variety.
Down Bromley Kent.
My dear Hooker
I ought to have written sooner to say that I am very willing to subscribe £1s1 to the African man (though it be murder on a small scale) & will send you a Post-office-order payable to Kew, if you will be so good as to take charge of it.
Thanks for your information about the Antarctic Zoolog. I got my numbers when in town on Thursday: wd it be asking your publisher to take too much trouble to send your Botany to the Athenæum Club: he might send two or three numbers together: I am really ashamed to think of your having given me such a valuable work; all I can say is that I appreciate your present in two ways, as your gift & for its great use to my species-work.— I am very glad to hear that you mean to attack this subject some day: I wonder whether we shall ever be public combatants: anyhow, I congratulate myself in a most unfair advantage of you, viz in having extracted more facts & views from you than from any one other person.
I daresay your explanation of polymorphism on volcanic
I cannot answer your question about the Purpura or about the currents: western currents flow strongly across the southern half of the group: I have not heard of the observations on the temperature of the sea in the different channels; but I know it varies wonderfully.—
I don't believe a Cactus ever was seen at the Galapagos 40 ft. high.— 20 or wd be nearer the mark.—
I have been interested by your remarks on Senecio & Gnaphalium: would it not be
worth while (I shd
Don't forget me, if you ever stumble on cases of the same species being more or less variable in different countries.—
With respect to the word “sterile” as used for male or polleniferous flowers, it has always offended my ears dreadfully, on the same principle that it would to hear a potent stallion ram or Bull called sterile, because they did not bear, as well as beget, young.
With respect to your geological-map suggestion, I wish with all my heart I cd follow it, but just reflect on the number of measurements requisite; why at present it could not be done even in England, even with the assumption of the land having simply risen any exact number of feet..— But subsidence in most cases has hopelessly complexed the problem: see what Jordan-hill-Smith says of the dance up & down, many times, which Gibraltar has had all within the recent period. Such maps as Lyell has published of sea & land at the beginning of the Tertiary periods must be excessively inaccurate: it assumes that every part on which Tertiary beds have not been deposited, must have then been dry land;—a most doubtful assumption.—
I have been amused by Chambers V. Hooker on the K. Cabbage: I see in the Explanations (the spirit of which, though not the facts, ought to shame Sedgwick) that Vestiges considers all land animals & plants to have passed from marine forms; so Chambers is quite in accordance. Did you hear Forbes when here, giving the rather curious evidence (from a similarity in error) that Chambers must be the author of the Vestiges: your case strikes me as some confirmation.—
I have written an unreasonably long & dull letter, so farewell. C. Darwin
Did you extract anything about J. Fernandez from Gay?
Do you take in the Hort. Journal; I want much to see first Number.—
- f1 951.f1Dated on the basis of n. 2, below.
- f2 951.f2See letter from J. D. Hooker, 1 February 1846, n. 9. In CD's Account Book (Down House MS) there is an entry dated 12 February: ‘Subscription for Duncan of Africa per Hooker’.
- f3 951.f3James Smith of Jordanhill. See J. Smith 1846.
- f4 951.f4‘Map shewing the extent of surface in Europe which has been covered by water since the deposition of the older Tertiary strata’, C. Lyell 1830–3, vol. 2, facing p. 304.
- f5 951.f5See letter from J. D. Hooker, 1 February 1846, n. 8.
- f6 951.f6[Chambers] 1845. CD recorded that he had read this on 6 February 1846 (DAR 119; Vorzimmer 1977, p. 134).
- f7 951.f7Adam Sedgwick published a scathing attack (Sedgwick 1845) on Vestiges of the natural history of creation ([Chambers] 1844), to which [Chambers] 1845 was a partial answer.
- f8 951.f8Edward Forbes had joined Hooker, Hugh Falconer, and George Robert Waterhouse at Down House on 6 December 1845, see letters to J. D. Hooker, [25 November 1845] and [10 December 1845].
- f9 951.f9The identity of the author of Vestiges of the natural history of creation was not officially revealed as Robert Chambers until 1885, although unofficially known from 1854 (A. Desmond 1982, p. 210).
- f10 951.f10Journal of the Horticultural Society of London.