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Darwin Correspondence Project

From J. V. Carus   26 February 1877

Naples, | Zoological Station,

Febr 26. 1877

My dear Sir,

Of course I shall correct the “self-fertilised”, as you desire me to do.1 But I cannot help thinking, that “self-fertilised” might be right after all; at least I find, in putting “crossed” instead, it does not give the sense if one goes on reading, which you intend to express   You say: selffertilised seedlings of Petunia exceed the crossed; this is an anomaly; but as with Iberis self fertilised seeds, not fully matured, grew quicker, so that they retained their advantage, so the most probable explanation is, that the seeds from which the selffertilised plants of Petunia were raised, were also not well ripened, and grew therefore quicker.2 Here “crossed” would be out of the way. The sheet, where this passage stands, is printed already; but I shall give it as an Erratum, if you wish it. However, I cannot as yet see, that it is wrong. I beg your pardon for doubting; but please read the whole paragraph, and I think my doubts are justified.

With my best wishes for your health | Yours ever sincerely | J. Victor Carus


CD had suggested a correction for the German translation of Cross and self fertilisation (see letter to J. V. Carus, 19 February 1877).
Petunia and Iberis (candytuft) are genera of flowering plants. CD realised his mistake and suggested a different correction (see Cross and self fertilisation, p. 275 and letter to J. V. Carus, 4 March 1877).


Cross and self fertilisation: The effects of cross and self fertilisation in the vegetable kingdom. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1876.


Is unconvinced that correction in Cross and self-fertilisation requested by CD [see 10852] should be made. Asks CD to reconsider.

Letter details

Letter no.
Julius Victor Carus
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Zoological Station, Naples
Source of text
DAR 161: 107
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 10870,” accessed on 15 June 2021,