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Link: • Peter Collinson to Carl Linnaeus, 12 September 1745 n.s.
Dated Sepr:1:1745 OS. Sent from London (Great Britain) to Uppsala (Sweden). Written in English.


Peter CollinsonCollinson, Peter (1694-1768).
British. Merchant and amateur naturalist
in London, corresponded with many
scientists. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
writes that in a previous letter, Linnaeus had asked for the reasons behind some names that John MitchellMitchell, John (1711-1768).
British/American. Physician and
botanist. Born in Virginia. After
studies in medicine at the University of
Edinburgh he returned to Virginia as a
physician, but left America for London
in 1746. Famous for his map of eastern
North-America, known as the Mitchell
Map, first published in 1755.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
had given to new genera, among those the name Elymus. Mitchell had been surprised at the question, since Linnaeus had blamed Johannes BurmanBurman, Johannes (1707-1779).
Dutch. Botanist, professor of medicine
in Amsterdam. Close friend of Linnaeus.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
for not remembering ancient names, and he refers to Critica botanicaLinnaeus, Carl Critica
botanica, in qua nomina plantarum
generica, specifica & variantia
examini subjiciuntur, selectiora
confirmantur, indigna rejiciuntur;
simulque doctrina circa denominationem
plantarum traditur. Seu Fundamentorum
botanicorum pars IV. Accedit J.
Browallii De necessitate historiae
naturalis discursus
(Leiden 1737).
, pag. 117. According to Mitchell, Elymus is the name of panicum used by DioscoridesDioscorides, Pedanius (1st
century AD). Greek. Naturalist and
, so Mitchell has used it for a species of wild grain found in Virginia.

In addition, Mitchell had observed that Linnaeus puts Diodia in class 14, while Mitchell says it belongs to class 4.

Collinson thanks Linnaeus for his letter of July 16 of the previous year [this letter has not come down to us]. The letter to Mark CatesbyCatesby, Mark (1682-1749).
British. Naturalist and artist. Best
known for his illustrated work The
Natural history of Carolina, Florida and
the Bahama islands
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
has been delivered to him [this letter has not come down to us], and Collinson forwards thanks for that.

Collinson is glad that Linnaeus has succeeded in raising plants from seeds he had sent him.

Collinson will forward Linnaeusís compliments to Georg Dionysius EhretEhret, Georg Dionysius
(1710-1770). German/British. Botanical
illustrator. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
when he sees him.

Collinson is sorry that MorsachMorsach, German. Merchant,
has not forwarded the package of seeds. Collinson had believed there were frequent ships between Danzig and Sweden. Collinson advises Linnaeus to write to Morsach or to Dr. Brenyus [Johann Philip BreyneBreyne, Johann Philip
(1680-1764). German/Polish. Zoologist
and physician in Danzig. Son of Jacob
Breyne. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
], a friend of Morsach.

Collinson had received Linnaeus requests for books. John BlackstoneísBlackstone, John (1713-1753).
British. Botanist and apothecary,
work ďfas. plas. circa HarefieldĒ [Collinson refers to Fasciculus plantarum circa Harefield sponte nascentiumBlackstone, John Fasciculus
plantarum circa Harefield sponte
nascentium, cum appendice ad loci
historiam spectante
(London, 1737).
] was sold before the order arrived, but Collinson sends Linnaeus Paul HermannísHermann, Paul (1646-1695).
German. Botanist, physician at Batavia,
professor of botany at Leiden.
, Paradisus BatavusHermann, Paul Paradisus
Batavus, continens plus centum plantas
affabrè aere incisas &
descriptionibus illustratas. Cui
accessit Catalogus plantarum, quas pro
tomis nondum editis, delineandas
curaverat P. Hermannus [ed. by W.
. It cost 8 shilling and sixpence.

Collinson had gone to see Sloane a few days earlier and found him well. Delenius [Johann Jacob DilleniusDillenius, Johann Jacob
(1684-1747). German/British. Studied at
Giessen. Sherardian professor of botany
at Oxford. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
] is still in good health and was in London a few weeks earlier.

Collinson is glad Linnaeusís works are so near completion. Linnaeusís industry is admired by everybody.

Collinson asks for the illustrations belonging to Linnaeusís report of the journey to Öland and Gotland [Collinson refers to Linnaeusís, Öländska och gothländska resaLinnaeus, Carl
Öländska och
Gothländska Resa på Riksens
högloflige ständers befallning
förrättad åhr 1741. Med
anmärkningar uti oeconomien,
natural-historien, antiquiteter &c
med åtskillige figurer

(Stockholm & Uppsala 1745). Soulsby
no. 202.
]. Since Collinson does not understand Swedish, the figures would help him to understand the text better.

Linnaeusís Flora LapponicaLinnaeus, Carl Flora
Lapponica exhibens plantas per Lapponiam
crescentes, secundum systema sexuale
collectas in itinere [...] Additis
synonymis, & locis natalibus omnium,
descriptionibus & figuris rariorum,
viribus medicatis & oeconomicis
(Amsterdam, 1737).
Soulsby no. 279.
delights Collinson very much, since Linnaeus has mixed a variety of subjects with botany.

P.S. 1.Collinson reports that the American Ginseng has flowered and produced fruits this year, as have several other curious plants.

P.S. 2. Collinson does not send the book alone; he adds some specimens that he hopes will please Linnaeus.

P.S. 3. Collinson had heard from Breyne who wrote that he had forwarded the parcel to Uppsala as soon as he received it [see Breyne to Linnaeus, 30 August 1745Letter L0644].


a. original holograph (LS, XVII, 12-13). [1] [2] [3]


1. A selection (1821), vol. 1, p. 13-14   p.13  p.14.