To A. R. Wallace 9 April 1
Down. | Bromley. | Kent. S.E.
My dear Wallace
You allude in yr note to several points which I shd much enjoy discussing with you did time & strength permit. I know Dr Seeman is a good botanist, but I most strongly advise you to shew the list to Hooker before you make use of the materials in print.2 Hooker seems much over worked & is now gone a tour, but I suppose you will be in town before very long, & cd see him.3
The list is quite unintelligible to me; it is not pretended that the same species exist in the Sandwich I’s4 & Arctic Regions; & as far as the genera are concerned, I know that in almost every one of them species inhabit such countries as Florida, N. Africa, New Holland5 &c. Therefore these genera seem to me almost mundane, & their presence in the Sandwich I.s will not, as I suspect in my ignorance, shew any relation to the Arctic regions. The Sandwich I.s, tho’ I have never considered them much, have long been a sore perplexity to me; they are eminently oceanic in position & productions; they have long been separated from each other; & there are only slight signs of subsidence in the islets to the westward.6
I remember however speculating that there must have been some immigration during the glacial period from N. America or Japan; but I cannot remember what my grounds were. Some of the plants, I think, shew an affinity with Australia.
I am very glad that you like Lyell’s chapter on oceanic islands, for I thought it one of the best in the part which I have read.7 If you do not receive the big photo. of me in due time, let me hear.8
yours very sincerely | Ch. Darwin
Warns ARW of dubious character of list of European alpine genera and species in volcanoes of Hawaii. Problems of geographical distribution in oceanic islands.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 6109,” accessed on 24 October 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-6109