From W. B. Tegetmeier [c. 26 September 1863]1
Excuse this hurried note but I thought you would like to see the Enclosed from last weeks Field Newspaper.
Yours most truly | W B Tegetmeier
Do not trouble to acknowledge receipt.
A fact for Mr Darwin—zebra-striped ass.—2 There is a grey coloured female jackass, about 15 years old, in the possession of a fruiterer in this neighbourhood, which has the four legs striped like a zebra up to the knees and hocks respectively. The stripes grow fainter behind; on the forelegs anteriorly, though not complete as in the zebra, they are very distinct and symmetrical. The muzzle and jaw, half way up to the eye, are black, and there is a broad black band at the base of each ear. All the history I could obtain about the animal was that “it came out of Suffolk,” and that it was “a rare good ’un”—this last exclamation being produced by an offer on my part to buy the skin of the animal, should it ever die, a fact which is, I suppose, somewhat problematical, as one never sees a dead ass. I opine, from the above exclamation and other “hints,” that its owner would rather I did not wait for its decease, but is quite ready to part with it now for “a consideration.”—C. R. Bree, M.D. (Colchester)3
Encloses a cutting from the Field: C. R. Bree on zebra-striped asses.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4314,” accessed on 4 December 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-4314