WCP2847

Letter (WCP2847.2737)

[1]

THE CAMP,

SUNNINGDALE.

Nov[embe]r 12 1905

My dear Wallace

My return from a short holiday at Sidmouth last Thursday was greeted by your kind and welcome letter & copy of your "Life". The latter was, I assure you, never expected, knowing as I do the demand for free copies that such a work inflicts on the author. In fact I had put it down as one of the annual xmas gifts of books that I receive from my own family. Coming as it then did, quite unexpectedly it is doubly welcome and I do heartily thank you for this proof of your greatly valued warm friendship. It will prove to be one of four [2] works of greater interest to me since Darwin's "Origins"; the others being Waddell's "Lhasa"; Scott's "Antarctic Voyage" and Mills' "Siege of the South Pole".

I have not seen Clodd's edition of Bates's Amazon, which I have put down as to be got & I had no idea that I should have appeared in it. Your citations of my letters & their contents are like dreams to me; for to tell you the truth, I am getting dull of memory as well as of hearing, and what is worse, in reading; what goes in at one eye goes out at the other. So I am getting to realise Darwin's consolation of old age that it absolves me from being expected to know remember or reason upon new facts & [3] discoveries. And this must apply to your query as to any one having as yet answered Di Vries. I cannot remember having seen any answer,— only criticisms of a discontinuous sort — I cannot for a moment entertain the idea that Darwin ever absented to the proposition that new species have always been produced from mutation & never through normal variability. Possibly still is some quibble as to the definition of mutation or of variation. The Americans are prone to believe new things. Witness their swallowing of the Thornley cactus producer and that man in California I forget his name, (Harland?) which Kew exposed by asking for specimens to exhibit in the Cactus House.

I have been for years working on the Indian species of Impatiens the distribution of which is unparalleled amongst Indian phanerogams. One species alone, the common indigenous garden balsam is found in most parts of India. Of the rest some [4] 200 species most by far are strictly limited to geographical area. The species are wonderfully constant though insect-fertilised and are almost demonstrably (to appearances) dependent for their creation on variation & florist action. I am sending you the published parts of an Epitome of the species the object of which is to draw collectors attention in India to the necessity of observing as well as collecting. Another part will finish it. The genus presents many anomalous structures. I have a long paper at the [1 word illeg.] in hand for the Linnean.I am new at the Malay Isle species; all conspicuously different from the Indian, even from the Malay Penninsular's which again are totally different from the Burmese.

To three brochures I have added a sketch of my father life:Lady Hooker Wedgewood Medallion & myself for your acceptance. I keep for health [1 word illeg.] for Eczema, which for the present [1 word illeg.] me. Resinol ointment acts like a charm on it. My eyesight and hand for [ 1 word illeg.] microscope for the simple [ 1 word illeg.] is as good as ever.

I am my dear Wallace | Sincerely yours| J D Hooker [signature]1

British Museum stamp.

Published letter (WCP2847.6450)

[1] [p. 82]

SIR J. HOOKER TO A. R. WALLACE

The Camp, Sunningdale. November 12, 1905.

My dear Wallace, — My return from a short holiday at Sidmouth last Thursday was greeted by your kind and welcome letter and a copy of your "Life." The latter was, I assure you, never expected, knowing as I do the demand for free copies that such a work inflicts on the writer. In fact I had put it down as one of the annual Christmas gifts of books that I received from my own family. Coming, as it thus did, quite unexpectedly, it is doubly welcome, and I do heartily thank you for this proof of your greatly valued friendship. It will prove to be one of four works of greatest interest to me of any published since Darwin's "Origin," the others being Waddell's "Lhasa," Scott's "Antarctic Voyage," and Mill's "Siege of the South Pole."

I have not seen Clodd's edition of Bates's "Amazon," which I have put down as to be got, and I had no idea that I should have appeared in it. Your citation of my letters and their contents are like dreams to me; but to [2] tell you the truth, I am getting dull of memory as well as of hearing, and what is worse, in reading: what goes in at one eye goes out at the other. So I am getting to realise Darwin's consolation of old age, that it absolves me from being expected to know, rememberm or reason upon new facts and discoveries. And this must apply to your query as to anyone having as yet answered de Vries. I cannot remember having seen any answer; only criticisms of a discontinuous sort. I cannot for a moment entertain the idea that Darwin ever assented to the proposition that new species have always been produced from mutation and never through normal variability. Possibly there is some quibble on the definition of mutation or of variation. The Americans are prone to believe any new things, witness their swallowing the thornless cactus produced by that man in California — I forget his name — which Kew exposed by asking for specimens to exhibit in the Cactus House.... — I am, my dear Wallace, sincerely yours, | JOS. D. HOOKER.

Published letter (WCP2847.6817)

[1] [p. 459]

To A. R. Wallace

The Camp, Sunningdale:1 November 12, 1905.

MY DEAR WALLACE, — My return from a short holiday at Sidmouth2 last Thursday was greeted by your kind and [2] [p. 460] welcome letter and copy of your 'Life.'3 The latter was, I assure you, never expected, knowing as I do the demand for free copies that such a work inflicts on the author. In fact I had put it down as one of the annual Xmas gifts of books that I receive from my own family. Coming as it thus did quite unexpectedly, it is doubly welcome and I do heartily thank you for this proof of your greatly valued warm friendship. It will prove to be one of four works of greater interest to me than any published since Darwin's4 'Origin';5 the others being Waddell's6 'Lhassa,'[sic]7 Scott's8 'Antarctic Voyage,'9 and Mill's10 Siege of the South Pole.'11

I have not seen Clodd's Edition12 of Bates's13 'Amazon,'14 which I have put down as to be got, and I had no idea that I should have appeared in it.15 Your citations of my letters and their contents are like dreams to me; for to tell the truth, I am getting dull of memory as well as of hearing, and what is worse, in reading, what goes in at one eye goes out at the other. So I am getting to realise Darwin's consolation of Old Age, that it absolves me from being expected to know, remember, or reason upon new facts and discoveries. And this must apply to your query as to any one having as yet answered De Vries.16 I cannot remember having seen any answer, only criticisms of a discontinuous sort. I cannot for a moment entertain the idea that Darwin ever assented to the proposition that new species have always been produced from mutation and never through normal variability. Possibly there is some quibble as to the definition of mutation or of variation. The Americans are prone to believe any new things, witness their swallowing the thornless Cactus produced by that man in California, I forget his name (Harland?)17 which Kew18 exposed by asking for specimens to exhibit in the Cactus House.

I have been for years working at the Indian species of Impatiens,19 the distribution of which is unparalleled amongst Indian phanerogams.20 One species alone, the indigenous Garden Balsam,21 is found in most parts of India. Of the rest, some 200 species, most by far are strictly limited to geographical [3] [p. 461] areas. The species are wonderfully constant though insect fertilised and are most demonstrably (to appearances) dependent for their creation, variation, &c. on Insect action. I am sending you the published part of an epitome of the species,22 the object of which is to draw collectors' attention in India to the necessity of observing as well as collecting.

J.D. Hooker's home in Berkshire.
A seaside resort in Devon.
Wallace, A. R. (1905) 'My Life; a record of events and opinions' London: Chapman & Hall Ltd.
Darwin, Charles Robert (1809-1882). British naturalist, geologist and author, notably of On the Origin of Species (1859).
Darwin, C.R. (1859). 'On the origin of species by means of natural selection, or, the preservation of favoured races in the struggle for life'. London: J. Murray.
Waddell, Laurence Austine (1854-1938). British explorer, Professor of Tibetan, Professor of Chemistry and Pathology, army surgeon, and amateur archaeologist.
Waddell, L.A. (1905) 'Lhasa and its MysteriesWith a Record of the Expedition of 1903-1904' London, UK: John Murray
Scott, Robert Falcon (1868-1912). British Antarctic explorer and Royal Navy officer.
Probably a reference to: Scott, R.F. (1905) 'The Voyage of the 'Discovery' '. London, UK: John Murray
Mill, Hugh Robert (1861-1950). British geographer and meteorologist.
Mill, H. R. (1905) 'The Siege of the South Pole: The Story of Antarctic Exploration' London, UK: Alston Rivers
Clodd, Edward (1840-1930). British banker, writer and anthropologist.
Bates, Henry Walter (1825-1892). British naturalist, explorer and close friend of ARW.
Bates H.W. (1892.) 'The Naturalist on the River Amazons, With a Memoir of the Author by Edward Clodd'. London, UK: John Murray
. At this point in the text a footnote is added?
De Vries, Hugo (1848-1935). Dutch botanist.
At this point in the text a footnote is added?
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
A genus of more than 1,000 species of flowering plants.
Also known as the spermatophytes, those plants that produce seeds.
Impatiens balsamina.
Published extract

Please cite as “WCP2847,” in Beccaloni, G. W. (ed.), Ɛpsilon: The Alfred Russel Wallace Collection accessed on 25 February 2024, https://epsilon.ac.uk/view/wallace/letters/WCP2847