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Darwin Correspondence Project

From George Rolleston   18 August 1876


Aug 18 | 1876.

My dear Sir.

I am sending to you by Book Post (1.) a corrected copy of my Bristol Address on Anthropology (2.) a paper on Prehistoric Inhabitants of Britain and (3) one of the same character as to Cissbury.1

I am leaving this place for a little while & you will therefore not be troubled to answer this— But I wish just to draw your attention to an understatement of your own case by yourself when you say that the Irish Greyhound Pig has no analogue or homologue for its mandibular wattle or wadt.2 Surely Sus verrucorus of Java furnishes this. I have written a long paper on Suidæ for the Linnæan Society in which this is brought out.3

Sus verrucorus is said by Müller & Schlegel to have its young unstriped; if this is really so, it is another lien to the Irish pig—4

I am | in great haste | Yours very Truly | George Rolleston

CD annotations

Top of letter: ‘appendage to Goat’ pencil; ‘V. under Dom 2: Edn— Goats Hairy appendage | Vol I. p. 106.’ ink5


Rolleston’s address to the department of anthropology at the 1875 meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science in Bristol had been reprinted as a pamphlet (Rolleston 1875a). His papers ‘On the people of the long barrow period’ (Rolleston 1875b) and ‘Note on the animal remains found at Cissbury’ (Rolleston 1875c) were published in the Journal of the Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland. CD’s copies of the address and papers have not been found.
Suidae is the family of pigs. Males of Sus verrucosus (‘verrucorus’ is a misspelling; the Javan warty pig) are notable for three pairs of facial warts, which continue to grow throughout the animal’s life. In his paper ‘On the domestic pig of prehistoric times in Britain, and on the mutual relations of this variety of pig and Sus scrofa ferus, Sus cristatus, Sus andamanensis, and Sus barbatus’ (Rolleston 1876, pp. 266–8), Rolleston discussed the Javan pig and referred to CD’s discussion of the Irish greyhound pig in Variation 2d ed. 1: 79. Rolleston’s paper was read in June 1876 and published in the Transactions of the Linnean Society in October 1877. CD’s copy is in his collection of unbound journals in the Darwin Library–CUL.
See Rolleston 1876, p. 266. Salomon Müller and Hermann Schlegel’s description of Sus verrucosus was in ‘Over der wilde Zweijnen van den Indischen Archipel’ (On the wild pigs of the Indian archipelago; S. Müller and Schlegel 1842, pp. 175–7).
CD’s annotations are notes for his reply of 24 August [1876].


Rolleston, George. 1876. On the domestic pig of prehistoric times in Britain, and on the mutual relations of this variety of pig and Sus scrofa ferus, Sus cristatus, Sus andamanensis, and Sus barbatus. [Read 15 June 1876.] Transactions of the Linnean Society of London (Zoology) 2d ser. 1 (1875–9): 251–86.

Variation 2d ed.: The variation of animals and plants under domestication. By Charles Darwin. 2d edition. 2 vols. London: John Murray. 1875.


Sends three of his anthropological papers.

CD understates his case when he says the mandibular wattle of the "Irish greyhound pig" has no analogue or homologue.

Letter details

Letter no.
George Rolleston
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 176: 211
Physical description
ALS 3pp †

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 10581,” accessed on 4 March 2024,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 24