From T. H. Farrer 17 October 1872
Abinger Hall, | Reigate. (Post Town) | Gomshall (Station) S.E.R.
17 Oct /72
My dear Mr Darwin
Many thanks for your very kind note.1 It would need very little to set me again on flowers— But I am afraid of it; it is so fascinating.— What with Railway Reports: Shipping Laws; housebuilding; guests; & perhaps above all—children who now depend wholly on me, I have a thoroughly occupied life, and can scarcely find time or brains for what would be a very great pleasure.2
Still I should like to see if one might not do something with Pisum & Lathyrus in the way of experiments— I must come to you for some hints before next spring. Might not a comparison of Lathyrus Odoratus, with L. sylvestris, (of which in its natural state I have some seeds) be interesting. The latter must have survived here in a natural way. How strange if after all the generations of L. odor. & of Pisum this now useless apparatus should survive in its original elaborate form—3
Before I had your note I had read the two articles you speak of twice over, with great interest.4 That doctrine of inherited qualities—mental & corporeal—is surely one of the most fertile, both in the region of physiology & in that of mental & moral philosophy—5 It brings together so many different & primâfacie opposite truths
Sincerely Yours | T H Farrer
Suggests possible experiments with Pisum and Lathyrus.
Has read the article CD spoke of; the doctrine of inherited mental and corporeal qualities is most fertile.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 8563,” accessed on 26 March 2017, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-8563