From John Price 5 March 1868
38 Watergate St Chester
Mar 5 1868
My dear “Charlie”
I have been at Delamere,1 enjoying your new book hugely, & have a specimen to send you which I think you will enjoy, in a measure. As the plant is a double variety it will be interesting to watch, “if we be spared” whether the plants thus issuing from the folicles 2 will retain this peculiarity. Should these fail (not likely, in your hands, I forget all such cares) Fox3 has lots more, in his garden. I have watched this habit in Card. pratensis for many years, & published repeated “articles”;4 but I am very inept at getting my facts & notions before the right people, & so they “fall as the leaves do”.
I never was so mad on any subject (nor were you, even at the Orms Heads! “New plant”!!)5 as on the striped horses, of wh. I have seen splendid specimens, & have often thought of sending you a skin; but the beasts wd. not die and “I never cd. abide to give ’em pizen”. (O. P’s Remains)6 My experience of them wd make a story, in 3 stories; lower occupied by asses; middle by mules; upper by horses!
I saw a very fine animal yesterday, of wh. I enclose a very rough acct., to be returned some day.7 I mean to go again.
If I understand your Pangenesis, every part contributes its contingent atom, or atoms, towards the future organism.8 And what wd. constitute a part? Would the skin & mucous linings be a single part, or two? Wd. all the glands be taken as a unit? or as several, according to their functions?
Should the secretions be considered merely as products of the organs? or must there be a bile gemmule as well as a gall gemmule?9 & so on.
You do me good by setting me a thinking, anyhow. Last year, I overworked myself, gave way to despondency, & for months lost my interest in every thing. After trying most things, including Hydropathy, I set myself, one night, to reflect upon God’s *mercies, seriatim, from infancy; which broke the spell, helped me to lay hold again of that blessed hope, Christ, (“He is our hope”)10 & I have been cheerful & active ever since thank God.
I am not sure I understand your 2 last pages where you confess you are out of your latitude.11 I once wrote Savans, savans, pour quoi vanter? Savez-vous vous orienter? this was to Bob Whiston lost in the wood.—12
I expect to understand “free will & predestn.” (both equally revealed truths) hereafter, with the origin of evil, & other mysterious subjects.13 As for “species”, I believe God created a very large no., (of which about 8 pluralities seem so clearly stated in Genesis i); & I know that the question between some of them & the “varieties” arisen out of them is often a difficult one, worth fighting pro, or con.—
Best wishes to your circle | Dear Darwin | yours very truly | J. Price
If I did not congrate. you on your son’s success, I meant to do.14 What of the girls?15 See the report of Commission in Pall Mall They must prick up their ears & start, like Jerboas.16
*You remember one of these, about 1828, at Bodnant.17
Visiting W. D. Fox.
Sends specimen of Cardamine pratensis,
and an account of a striped horse.
Has returned to religion and has been reflecting on God’s mercies, one of which CD should remember from about 1828 at Bodnant.
- information, data, scientific description
- physical ‘external’ characters
- specimens / samples
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 5982,” accessed on 24 July 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-5982