From J. S. Henslow 21 November 1840
Hitcham Bildeston | Suffolk
21 Nov 1840
My dear Darwin,
I have examined the flowers of your Thyme— The Anthers are abortive—which is not uncommon in more than one species of the Genus— In nearly the whole Order,1 one stamen out of 5 is constantly suppressed, either entirely, or there remains merely a rudiment of a filament— The suppression of the 5 Anthers shews a tendency in the present species towards becoming diœcious, but I don’t known whether the pistil is ever suppressed whilst the Anthers remain perfect—2
I expect to be in town on Decr. 7, when I take my Eldest Dr. 3 to St Albans, & bring back Leonard—4 I shall probably have to give a lecture to the Agriculturists on the 10th—as some of them seem to wish to hear something about Diseases in Corn, & a few drawings explanatory of my forthcoming report5 may serve to assist their conceptions— I am glad to find that you are at length back, & will certainly call—but I will not think of accepting any hospitality—for I feel that it would be wrong to risk a chance of bringing on a relapse—6
With Kindest remembrances to Mrs D. | Ever yours sincerely | J. S. Henslow
Reports on abortive anthers in flowers of thyme sent by CD.