I rec’d your agreeable letter, for which I am much oblig’d to you. I thank you
for adopting the Halesia among your Genera. You desire my advice in the affair of the
Butneria and Beureria. What you say is very true, call it which you will, you will
certainly give offence to one or another. M[iste]r Miller has called it[a][a] : MS 1 it [added above the
line] the Basteria. But if you’ll please to follow my advice, I would call it Gardenia from our worthy friend D[octo]r Alexander Garden of S[outh] Carolina, who will take it as a compliment from you, and may be a most useful correspondent to you, in sending you many new undescribd plants. I shall write to him by the Pacquet next week and let him know what you desire. He sent me this year great varieties of Plants, but they have been all taken by the French, but Mons[ieu]r Du Hamel has promisd for the future to return M[iste]r Collinson & me whatever are taken.
I shall forward you by the first opportunity D[octo]r Russels Book, and M[iste]r Edwards has promisd me some of his plates for you that are not yet publishd.
I long to see your method properly establishd amongst us, those people that us’d to laugh at is as chimerical, are glad to change their old names to your better chosen ones. I am sorry you chang’d the Name Meadia of Catesby, it gave great offence to the lovers of Botany, particularly as you changd it to an obsolete one. I wish you would alter it.
As I am well acquainted with the Gentlemen, that have the care of our British
Musaeum, I hope to persuade them to follow your method in the total disposition of it;
then one may easily find, what they want; but while different methods are followed,
nothing but confusion must arise. I wait with impatience to see the collection of
Fucus’s there. I have a tolerable good one of all the English & Irish ones, which as I
have examined most of them microscopically, I have observd many things curious in
them. I find the Confervas have blossoms & seeds. I have the drawing of two curious
ones, that Ehret drew for me, while we were on the sea coast. I find we are the least
knowing in submarine Botany. I find they are as Ignorant, as we are, in Holland; for
Doctor Job Baster of Zealand has very lately presented a paper to our Royal Society,
endeavouring to prove, that corallines are vegetables; and in order to illustrate it, has
given us drawings accurately painted, which demonstrate his subjects to be fucus’s
and conferva’s, instead of Corallines, His paper is pointed at my book, but I believe my
answer will convince him[b][b] : MS 1 him [added above the
line] of the necessity of making himself master of that kind of Botany, before he presents his other memoirs, which he has promisd the Society. He describes a good many sea Insects, which he found among the corallines, and several luminous insects, which he caught by filtrating the luminous sea water through spongy paper.
M[iste]r Brander, a Merchant here, and my intimate friend, has promisd to forward you what I intend, as he has already some things from M[iste]r Miller.
I took a great deal of trouble last summer in collecting and carefully examining all
the Crataegus, Sorbus & Mespilus, found in our Gardens which are numerous indeed. I
think the Sorbus sativa, from its five seeds and coriaceous loculaments, to come near
the Pyrus, besides the shape of the Fruit. We have a new curious american wild apple,
different from the Pyrus foliis serrato-angulosis. This has folia lanceolata serrato-
angulosa, and keeps its leaves on all the Winter. It is as yet rare here. We have some
young plants of the Halesia coming up from seed, the seed has been a whole year in
the Ground. It must bear our climate well[c][c] : MS 1 well [added above the
line] , as the winters are often sharp in the N[orth] West parts of S[outh] Carolina from whence it comes; it will be a valuable acquisition to Gentlemen who delight in curious hardy flowering shrubs, which is the fashion here at present. The red flowering Robinia is the ornament of our Gardens, it blossoms when it is not a foot high, and thrives luxuriantly when inarchd on the white blossomd Robinia.
I shall be extremely glad to do you any services here. I speak with sincerity, and beg you’d be so free as to command