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Darwin Correspondence Project

From J. D. Hooker   [4 April 1864]1

[Royal Gardens Kew]

Monday Mg

Dear Darwin

I have written to Balfour to ask Scotts character,2 making no allusion to you or himself, simply saying that I have been asked to look out for a foreign appt. for him & asking Balfours opinion of his character for skill, strength, activity & obliging disposition—3 I have no post in view & we have one of our own men who it is our duty to serve first—so please say nothing to Scott about it. I shall let you know what Balfour says.

Ever yrs affec | J D Hooker


The date is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter to J. D. Hooker, 5 April [1864]. In 1864, 4 April was a Monday
John Hutton Balfour was professor of botany and keeper of the Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh. John Scott had been the foreman of the propagating department at the Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh, until his resignation in March (see letter from John Scott, 10 March 1864).
For Balfour’s reply, see the enclosure to the letter from J. D. Hooker, 6 April 1864.


JDH has written to J. H. Balfour for a character reference for John Scott.

Letter details

Letter no.
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 101: 202
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4448,” accessed on 8 December 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 12