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Darwin Correspondence Project

To [John Colby]   2 March [1877]1

Down, | Beckenham, Kent. | Railway Station | Orpington. S.E.R.

March 2d

Dear Sir

I am obliged to you for having taken the trouble to write me.— I can by mean explain your case, but cannot suppose the pistil behaved as in your description, except by mere accident.—2

I remain | Dear Sir | Yours faithfully | Ch. Darwin


The addressee and the year are established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from John Colby, 27 February 1877 (Correspondence vol. 25).
Colby had sent CD an description and diagram of two flowers of a ‘species of blue bell’ (probably Campanula) where the pistil of one flower had grown into an adjoining flower (Correspondence vol. 25, letter from John Colby, 27 February 1877).


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


Does not think the pistil behaved as JC described, except by mere accident.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
John Colby
Sent from
Source of text
The National Library of Israel (Abraham Schwadron collection, Schwad 03 04 07)
Physical description
ALS 1p

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 10873F,” accessed on 19 May 2024,