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Darwin Correspondence Project

From J. D. Hooker   [18 April 1876]1

Royal Gardens Kew


Dear Darwin

Enclosed are some Teazle seeds.2 I have not yet been at the R.S. to see about Forsters verdict on L. Tait’s paper.3

It was a real pleasure to see you & George both looking so well & to find your domestic hearth so well furnished.4

I have just heard from A. Gray. pointing out some improvements for the next Edn of Primer & adding I like it very much; it “is clear, concise, to the point”— I am so glad— I feared it was a little abortion.5

Ever aff yr | Jos D Hooker

No answer: I shall see you in Q. A. Street.6


The date is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter to J. D. Hooker, 19 April [1876].
The seeds of teasel (Dipsacus) were probably sent for Francis Darwin, who was working on it by late May 1876 (see letter from Francis Darwin, [31 May 1876].
CD had submitted Lawson Tait’s paper on the tropical pitcher-plant, Nepenthes, to the Royal Society of London, and had suggested that a ‘vegetable histologist’ review the paper (see Correspondence vol. 23, letter to J. D. Hooker, 1 December [1875]). There were two reviewers, morphological and physiological (see letter to Lawson Tait, 24 April 1876). Evidently Michael Foster was the physiological one. For Hooker’s low opinion of Tait’s paper, see the letter from J. D. Hooker, 28 January 1876.
George Howard Darwin arrived back from a trip to Malta on 28 March 1876; Hooker visited Down on 15 April (Emma Darwin’s diary (DAR 242)).
Hooker’s Botany (Hooker 1876a), in the ‘Science primers’ series of Macmillan and Co., had been published in March 1876 (Publishers’ Circular, 16 March 1876, p. 218); two further editions appeared in 1876, after which it was reprinted several times. Asa Gray’s letter has not been found.
CD stayed at the home of his brother, Erasmus Alvey Darwin, in Queen Anne Street, London, from 27 April to 3 May 1876 (see ‘Journal’ (Appendix II)); he had intended to leave for London on 20 April 1875, but was detained when Henrietta Emma Litchfield fell ill while she was staying at Down (see letter to J. D. Hooker, 19 April [1876]).


Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 29 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.


JDH has heard from Asa Gray, who approves of the botany primer [Botany (1876)].

Letter details

Letter no.
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 104: 49–50
Physical description
ALS 3pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 10282,” accessed on 29 May 2023,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 24