WCP4244

Letter (WCP4244.4314)

[1]

Jan[uar]y 12th, 1912

Old Orchard,

Broadstone,

Dorset.

To the Biology Students in the University of Colorado[,] U.S.A.1

My dear Young Friends

Thank you much for your very kind greetings. I am much pleased that so many of you are readers of my books. The wonders of nature have been the delight and solace of my life. From the day when I first saw a Bee-orchis2 (Ophrys apifera) in ignorant astonishment, to [2] my first view of the grand forests of the Amazon; thence to the Malay Archipelago, where every fresh island with its marvellous novelties and beauties was an additional delight — nature has afforded one an ever increasing rapture, and the attempt to solve some of her myriad [word illeg. crossed-out] problems an ever-growing sense of mystery and awe.

And now, in my wild garden and greenhouse, the endless diversities of plant life renew my enjoyments; and the ever-changing pageant [3] of the seasons impress one more than ever [than] in my earlier days.

I sincerely wish you all some of the delight in the mere contemplation of nature’s mysteries and beauties which I have enjoyed, and still enjoy.

Yours very truly | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]

ARW is writing to the students attending classes held by Theodore Dru Alison Cockerell (1866 — 1948). American zoologist.
Synonymous with the term bee-orchid, an herbaceous perennial plant of the family Orchidaceae.

Published letter (WCP4244.5772)

[1]1 [p. 487]

January 12, 1912.

My dear Young Friends:

Thank you much for your very kind greetings. I am much pleased that so many of you are readers of my books. The wonders of nature have been the delight and solace of my life. From the day when I first saw a bee-orchis (Ophrys apifera) in ignorant astonishment, to my first view of the grand forests of the Amazon; thence to the Malay Archipelago, where every fresh island with its marvellous novelties and beauties was an additional delight—nature has afforded me an ever-increasing rapture, and the attempt to solve some of her myriad problems an ever-growing sense of mystery and awe. And now, in my wild garden and greenhouse, the endless diversities of plant life renew my enjoyments; and the ever-changing pageants of the seasons impress me more than ever in my earlier days.

I sincerely wish you all some of the delight in the mere contemplation of nature's mysteries and beauties which I have enjoyed, and still enjoy.

Yours very truly,

Alfred R. Wallace.

Editor Charles H. Smith's Note: Wallace's response to a birthday greeting sent to him by biology students at the University of Colorado. First printed in the student newspaper Silver and Gold there, but transcribed here from a reprinting on page 487 of the 29 March 1912 issue of Science.

Please cite as “WCP4244,” in Beccaloni, G. W. (ed.), Ɛpsilon: The Alfred Russel Wallace Collection accessed on 2 July 2022, https://epsilon.ac.uk/view/wallace/letters/WCP4244