Documentation

Letters

-Search for letters
-Search in texts

Manuscripts

Editions

Links

Contact

C18

Link: linnaeus.c18.net/Letter/L0142 • Adriaan van Royen to Carl Linnaeus, 23 February 1737 n.s.
Dated 23 Febr. 1737. Sent from Leiden (Netherlands) to (). Written in Latin.

Clarissimo Expertisssimoque Viro
D[omino] D[omino] Carolo Linnaeo
Medicinae Doctori
Ac[ademiae] Imp[erialis] Nat[urae] Cur[iosorum]
Socio.
A[drianus] Van Royen.

Pauci me heic retinentes prohibent aegri, quominus me Tibi sistere, et datam fidem exsolvere queam; immo solidos hosce tres dies Botanicis indulgere Tecum deliciis laetissimo jam animo decreveram, sed en: mortem minantia sÿmptomata et, (Turpe dictu) fluxus alvi colliquativus Phthÿsico cuidam supervenerunt, et omnem spem nostram prorsus fecerunt irritam: Ita quisque suos patimur manes.[1]

Tu, quod servitium videas Dominumque paratum,
Nos, quod non liceat te propiore frui.

Interim, ut ridendo vera dicamus, videmur ambo a severioribus Musis liberi aliquod saltem corporis amare exercitium, ego, dum injussus terram fodio, tu, dum cum Vitulis viam non tenentibus cursu certas.

Nostrae hactenus Novellae nihil habuerunt de iis, quae in Delphis Armeniae contigisse percepisti; si tamen Hortus ibidem, erit haud dubie quoque Praefectus quidam constitutus; quem tunc proximis responsoriis ex Muscovia litteris, spero, intelligam; sin minus, inquiram: Me quod attinet rei novitatem non miror aut insolentiam, nam idem ille ventus dicam an spiritus Botanicus, qui magnam jam Tartariam, Siberiam et vicina adflavit, quidni in ipsam penetrasset Armeniam, quam diu nil mortalibus arduum.[2]

Nostra hÿberno hoc tempore dormit Flora, ut tanto magis florida exsurgat, Cupressi tamen omnes vigent, virent, et florent, immo et aperto sub Iove fructificant[a][a] : MS1 [added at the end of the
line and between the lines
].
inprimis[b][b] : MS1 [added in the margin]. pulcrior illa Sinensis Thuÿa<e> foliis inodoris nobis dicta, quae non secus ac reliquae Lynceis tuis oculis examinatae, flores et fructus in eadem fert arbore brevi depingendos. ne itaque quis dubitet amplius de Mare et Foemina in eadem arbore reperiundis, quamvis loco remotis.

In Borragine Constantinopolitana mirus et insolens naturae lusus inprimis in Corollae segmentis nunc geminis,[c][c] : MS1 <duobus> geminis nunc ternis,[d][d] : MS1 <tribus> ternis nunc quaternis, nunc quinis, observatur: nulli tamen si reliquas spectes floris partes, propior esse videtur, quam Borragini; nisi novum inde genus constituere malles.

De Acacia triacanth[a] etc[eteris] nihil sane Te monere, nihil docere possum, uti nec dulcissimus noster GronoviusGronovius, Johan Frederik
(1690-1762). Dutch. Naturalist, senator
of Leiden. Linnaeus’s benefactor and
friend. Published Flora Virginica
(1743, 1762) together with John Clayton.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
, nisi uterque in re dubia maxime hallucinari velimus: Ego tamen ex facie Acaciam esse crederem, sed qualem non determinarem, quod neque Ille[e][e] : MS1 <ille> Ille forsan fecisset, nisi PlukenetianoPlukenet, Leonard (1642-1706).
British. Botanist and physician.
Botanist to Mary II (wife of William
III). Superintendent of Hampton Court.
(quod non ita absurdum) nomine inscripta olim accepisset semina. Flores Acaciae istius nec vivos nec[f][f] : MS1 <seu... seu> nec... nec siccos unquam vidi, uti nec ParkinzoniamParkinson, John (1567-1650).
British. Apothecary and botanist to
Jacob I. Author of Theatrum
botanicum
(1640).
nec CaesalpiniamCesalpino, Andrea (1519-1603).
Italian. Botanist, professor of medicine
and botany in Pisa and Rome and
physician of Clement VIII. Best known
for his De plantis libri xvi
(1583).
PlumieriPlumier, Charles (1646-1704).
French. Botanist, travelled in Central
America and the Carribean. Linnaeus
generally approved of the descriptions
in his richly illustrated botanical
works.
, quapropter nullum potius, quam incertum de hisce feram judicium.

Betulae Nanae ex Norwegia receptae semen unum alterumve nobiscum si communicare posses et velles, gratiam apud me inires singularem.

PetiveriamPetiver, James (c.1663-1718).
British. Apothecary. Collector of
natural history specimens. His herbarium
contained more than 5000 items.
a Cl[arissimo] BoerhavioBoerhaave, Herman (1668-1738).
Dutch. Professor of medicine, botany and
chemistry at Leiden. One of the most
influential professors of medicine of
the eighteenth century. Linnaeus visited
him during his stay in Holland.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
unquam ad Solana relatam[g][g] : MS1 <relata> relatam fuisse ignoro: mihi pro Petiveria ex Britannia missum est siccum specimen, quod ni idem fuerit, ad Amarantum perennem Bocc[onei]Boccone, Silvio-Paolo
(1633-1704). Italian. Botanist at the
court of Ferdinand II of Tuscany,
professor of botany at Padua.
quam proxime accedit.

Accipies una cum hisce Dissertationes aliquot etc[etera] D[octo]r[is] HebenstreitiiHebenstreit, Johann Ernst
(1703-1757). German. Anatomist and
explorer. Professor in Leipzig in 1729.
Travelled in North Africa 1731-1735.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
sed sine ullis, ut suspicor, litteris.

Hac opportunitate addimus quatuor, quum plura nobis supersint, Carmina, quae, quamvis parva munuscula, tui juris facimus alias majora daturi.

Interim scias velim, dat er in[h][h] : MS1 [added above the line] de maendt NovemberAl weer een ongeboore Heldt Bij Moeder in de kost besteldt. etc[etera]. Si nihil obstet Te et Cliffortianas stirpes videndi cupidissimo <animo> die Veneris proximo Te conveniam.

Vale et me Tuo utere. Tuas exspectat Cl[arissimus] Gronovius, qui Te plurimum salvere et bono animo esse jubet. Iterum vale.

Dabam Leidae 23 Febr[uarii] 1737.

upSUMMARY

Adriaan Van Royen cannot leave as he has to look after his patients, especially a terminal phthisis patient, who needs his assistance. So, although he had decided to spend three entire days with Linnaeus to discuss botanical matters, he cannot keep his promise. He thinks everyone has his own problems, Linnaeus also, because he lives like a servant, Van Royen because he cannot enjoy Linnaeus’s company.

In a humorous way Van Royen states that they both like physical exercise when they are not working: he himself by digging up earth, Linnaeus by running a race with loose calves.

The Leiden Garden is sleeping during the winter. The cypresses however are all thriving, greening, and blooming; they are even bearing fruit, above all the Chinese Thuya with its odourless leaves. Just as the other cypresses, which Linnaeus has examined with his lynx eyes, the Thuya has flowers and fruits on the same tree. There is no longer any doubt that the male and female are to be found in the same tree, though they are separated from each others.

In the Borrago Constantinopolitana one can observe a wonderful and uncommon game of nature, in particular in the segments of the corolla, which now are single, now double, triple, quadruple, or quintuple. If, however, one looks to the other parts of the flower, it seems closer to no other plant than the Borrago. Unless one would prefer to form therefore a new genus.

About the Acacia triacantha etc. Van Royen cannot tell nor teach anything to Linnaeus. And neither can their gentle friend Johan Frederik Gronovius, unless both would like to improvise about something they do not know. For his part, Van Royen believes that it is an Acacia, but he can not say which one. He had received some seeds with an indication of the name Plukenet had given it. Van Royen has never seen flowers (alive nor dried) of that kind of Acacia, neither of the Parkinsonia nor the Caesalpinia of Plumier. Therefore he prefers not to give any opinion on it.

If Linnaeus would be so kind as to send Van Royen one or two seeds of the Betula Nana he got from Norway, Van Royen would be very grateful.

Van Royen does not know if Boerhaave had ever grouped the Petiveria with the Solana. From England he had got a dried specimen with the indication that is was a Petiveria. If it is not a Petiveria, it corresponds very well to Boccone’s Amarantus perennis.

Together with Van Royen’s letter Linnaeus will receive some dissertations etc. from Johann Ernst Hebenstreit.

On this occasion Van Royen adds four poems, although he has got more.

If nothing happens, Van Royen hopes to see Linnaeus next Friday.

He concludes by saying that Gronovius sends him his greetings and is expecting a letter from Linnaeus.

upMANUSCRIPTS

a. original holograph (LS, XII, 259-260). [1] [2] [3]

upTEXTUAL NOTES

a.
MS1 [added at the end of the line and between the lines].
b.
MS1 [added in the margin].
c.
MS1 <duobus> geminis
d.
MS1 <tribus> ternis
e.
MS1 <ille> Ille
f.
MS1 <seu... seu> nec... nec
g.
MS1 <relata> relatam
h.
MS1 [added above the line]

upEXPLANATORY NOTES

1.
Vergilius, Aeneis, 6, 743a: Quisque suos patimur manis.
2.
Horatius, Carmina, 1, 3, 37: Nil mortalibus ardui est.