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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Walter White   17 [October – November 1862?]1



Dear Sir

I have received Vol I of Hort. Transact. & am much obliged but it is not the right volume; I believe that I wrote Vol I second series.2 Have you not 2d series? Will you kindly pass this note on to Linn. Soc to see if they have the Second series; & if so ask them to send it by Delivery Coy on Wednesday morning to enclosed address. Will you kindly inform me whether either Soc. has this second series? for I must somehow get it— I am sorry to cause so much trouble—

In Haste | Yours faithfully | C. Darwin

Librarian Royal Soc | or | Linnean Socy.3


The date range is conjectured from the reference to volume 1 of the second series of the Transactions of the Horticultural Society of London (see n. 2, below).
CD’s earlier letter to White, who was the librarian of the Royal Society, has not been found. Between 7 October and 11 December 1862, CD wrote a draft section of Variation in which he discussed ‘Facts of variation of Plants’, appearing in the published form as chapters 9 and 10 (Variation 1: 305–72; see ‘Journal’ (Correspondence vol. 10, Appendix II)). In his discussion he cited on several occasions Robert Thompson’s papers on the varieties of apricot, gooseberry, and cherry, which were published in volume 1 of the second series of the Transactions of the Horticultural Society of London (Thompson 1831, 1832a, and 1832b).
The librarian of the Linnean Society of London was Richard Kippist.


Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 27 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

Thompson, Robert. 1831. A report upon the varieties of apricot cultivated in the garden of the Horticultural Society. [Read 15 February 1831.] Transactions of the Horticultural Society of London 2d ser. 1 (1831–5): 56–75.

Variation: The variation of animals and plants under domestication. By Charles Darwin. 2 vols. London: John Murray. 1868.


CD needs first volume of the second series [of Trans. R. Hortic. Soc. Lond.].

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Librarian, Royal Society of London
Sent from
Source of text
Wellcome Library
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 3769,” accessed on 23 October 2020,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 10