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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Gardeners’ Chronicle   [before 29 December 1855]

As you have lately published such full and interesting details on the case of the long entombed Raspberry seeds,1 you may like to hear that a somewhat similar instance has been observed on the Continent. Gærtner (Versuche über die Bastarderzeugung, s. 157)2 states on the authority of Jouannot that seeds from the graves of ancient Gauls, of the date of the introduction of Christianity (probably at the time of Clodowig in the third or fourth century A.D.) germinated and produced Heliotropium vulgare, Centaurea cyanus, and Trifolium minimum. Gærtner gives, as reference, Froriep Notizen, B. XLIII., No. 946, p. 348. It seems that no known botanist looked to the correctness of these names. C. Darwin.


Gardeners’ Chronicle and Agricultural Gazette, no. 45, 10 November 1855, pp. 739–40.
Gärtner 1849, pp. 157–8. The notice in Notizen aus dem Gebiete der Natur- und Heilkunde, no. 946, March 1835, p. 346, cites François René Bénit Vatar de Jouannet as the source.


Cites [from Gärtner’s Bastarderzeugung (1849), p. 157] a report that seeds from graves of ancient Gauls germinated.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Gardeners’ Chronicle
Sent from
Source of text
Gardeners’ Chronicle and Agricultural Gazette, no. 52, 29 December 1855, p. 854

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 1802,” accessed on 21 September 2019,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 5