To Edward Ramsay   14 February 1875

Melbourne 14/2/75


This morning, dear Mr Ramsay, I got the palmfruits. That which was taken for a Cocos, is an Areca, so far as I can make out from the decayed state of the kernel. In all probability it is the same as Hill's Cocos Normanbyana, my Areca Normanbyana.1 If I knew more about the size &c of your palm, both might perhaps with certainty be distinguished or identified.

As about 80 Asiatic species of Calamus are known, and many of them may extend to E. Australia, it is impossible to define any species without the leaves and flowers being also at hand. I still am longing for the alpine vegetation of N. Guinea. Can we not manage to get a collector away on limited expense? Your museum, the Dobroyde nursery & myself might manage to get money enough together to send a man to Cape York, where he might collect, til an opportunity offers to go to the N. E. coast of N. G., from whence the Alps best can be reached. In the ruin of my Department I have discontinued to subscribe to journals. Hence I know nothing of the Challenger's2 doing; but I can hardly think that any of the party got up to the snowline. Is anything known about the intended movements of the Pearl.3

Accept my poor photogram and send me yours4


Ferd von Mueller


If you wrote to our Minister of Mines hon Mr Mackay, you might get for your library a copy of my volume, just issued, on veg. fossils.5


Areca Normanbyana


Cocos Normanbyana

Cocos normanbyi? Areca normanbyi?
British oceanographic research vessel, commanded by George Nares.
A British Navy vessel on the Australian Station, captained by James Goodenough.
There is no photograph of Ramsay in M’s surviving photograph album at the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne.
Probably B74.13.07.

Please cite as “FVM-75-02-14a,” in Correspondence of Ferdinand von Mueller, edited by R.W. Home, Thomas A. Darragh, A.M. Lucas, Sara Maroske, D.M. Sinkora, J.H. Voigt and Monika Wells accessed on 17 August 2022,