From J. D. Hooker 9 June 1862
Royal Gardens Kew | Kew
My dear Darwin
Oliver has written what appears to me to be an able review of “Dimorphism” apropos of your Primula paper for the forthcoming No. of the N.H Review.1 Your account of Viola impregnating direct from the anther is to me novel & most interesting it is half-way to the structure of Asclepias &c.2 I have finished the Cameroons Mt plants, are you ready for the gross results? as to the proportions &c of temperate forms.3
I am daily at Exhibition Jury work except Monday— it is just as well to be slaving there as at Kew, & as amusing.4
We are still in domestic perplexity— My wife5 is very thin & watery, lacks energy, blood & muscle. & though she does her best honestly & heartily with the children, she lacks energy & method & does not get on.— We have agreed to a plan of housekeeping which will I hope answer better—to get a middle aged cook who will be sort of housekeeper in as far as keeping an absolute control over who comes in & out of the kitchen—6 Mrs Darwin is not likely to know of such a person, but perhaps you will kindly mention it to her—quite a plain cook is all we want, who can roast, boil & bake, but she must be beyond the age of flirtation— I can promise her a quiet place, a most indulgent mistress & good wages.— Then we shall return to the Nursery Governess plan—but endeavour to get an older & more practised one than we had before—
I am getting over my dispiriting feelings of annoyance & anxiety. I wish I could add that my wife was better— she complains of palpitation of heart & shortness of breath & she has hardly a perceptible pulse—that she looks very ill every one says. I want above all to take her away, but neither of us can leave home till our household is arranged.
Ever yrs affec | J D Hooker
Oliver has written able paper on dimorphism for Natural History Review [n.s. 2 (1862): 235–43].
CD’s account of Viola is novel and interesting.
Has finished Cameroon mountain plants.
Jury work at exhibition.
Domestic problems – wife is ill, no cook, etc.
- geographical distribution
- information, data, scientific description
- positive attitude/assessment
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 3593,” accessed on 25 October 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-3593