From J. B. Innes 19 February 1
Milton Brodie | Forres. | NB
You must not suppose we only think of you and yours when some fact of natural history turns up, for indeed we often think and speak of our kind friends in the South, and some times Stephens gives us a bulletin2 We were sorry the last reported some of your party indisposed3 I hope you have forgotten all about this long ago.
My gardener has got a bird the offspring of a male mule between a canary and green finch, and a hen canary. He says he is quite sure that papa was a mule, though he is not quite sure whether it was half greenfinch or chaffinch. It was reared by a labourer who was then in this garden, and he persisted in putting it with the canary in spite of all assurances that they would not breed, and this bird is the result. Probably you know plenty such cases, but it is new to me— If you want any thing looked after up here in Earth air or water tell me and we will do our little utmost.
We have had very mild weather no frost to Johnny’s sorrow as he wants to skate and has only had them on once for a short morning when rain came—4 today it has been quite warm.
We saw the announcement of Mrs Langton’s death.5 I know you were prepared for and expecting it and believe she had been in much suffering. We have been all as well as usual. Johnny has not tired of his home pursuits yet, and looks forward to some swimming in the sea when hot weather comes He likes his tutor and works pretty willingly. Eliza is much as usual and has been once out to dinner, a mighty feat for her, but I fear she will not repeat it very often.6
You will be all gay with the Exhibition. We hear so much of it, that I suppose some of us at least must struggle up to see it before it closes.7
With all our best regards to your circle | Believe me Dear Darwin | Yours faithfully | J. B. Innes
Reports on a bird, offspring of a male mule between a canary and greenfinch, and a hen canary.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 3454,” accessed on 25 February 2017, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-3454