To J. D. Hooker 8 March 1
I think that part of the enclosed letter is well worth your reading, viz about the grass of which the awns like a tendril catch its own rachis. The first part about Escholtzia, which is self-sterile in a much greater degree in S. Brazil than here, is not worth your reading. At the end of the note however there is a good & precise case of the transmission of character from the individual flowers on the same spike.2
Please return the letter.
I am rather glad to have the excuse of sending it, as I want to hear a little news of you. About myself I have no news, as I am going on in my old routine. The subject of sexual selection grows bigger & bigger as I progress but I suppose I shall some day end it.3 We are a very small party here at present for Lizzy is gone to Germany & Henrietta is in a very poor state & has been confined to her bed room for the last fortnight.4
As you always puff me up so I must tell you that I have just been applied to to permit a French trans. of my Orchis book. It bothers me a good deal to know how much to add, for I have an immense amount of new matter; want of time however will compel me I think to make but few additions.5
yours affectionately | Ch Darwin
Though I am so despised by the great guns of the Institute, I presume I am rising in estimation amongst the mob, for another man has applied to translate my Journal of Travels.—6 Here is a boasting note.
Transmits letter [from Fritz Müller].
Has been asked to permit a French translation of Orchids and Journal of researches.
At work on sexual selection.