Carl Linnaeus to Melcher Falkenberg,
16 November 1773 n.s.
L4930. Carl LinnaeusCarl Linnaeus (1707-1778). Swedish.
to Melcher FalkenbergMelcher Falkenberg (1722-1795).
Linnaeus replies in haste to Melcher Falkenberg’sFalkenberg, Melcher
Linnaeus answers the first question, stating that he doubted whether a half-timbered building could retain the warmth so well and so evenly as a brick house. Linnaeus remembered that mortar loosened from half-timber; and that he knew not whether half-timbered walls could keep out the cold during the winters in Skåne. In answering the second question, Linnaeus said that it appeared to be very similar to the Orangery in the Uppsala University Botanical Garden. The oven with duct D extended in the drawing to ? but Linnaeus feared that it was too long and only convey smoke, as well as being impossible to clean of soot. It would appear better if it were placed right in front of the windows, ex. C, and then terminate at chimney y at the far end, and that a tiled oven ? with double pipes was placed at the rear that could be used if the weather got colder.
Linnaeus then draws a diagram to illustrate what he means.
As regards question 3, Linnaeus considers that the place marked e on the drawing should be a shelf for the pots. They could only be placed on the south or on the window side, but preferably not at the rear as it was certainly possible to get the orangery heated but that it was necessary to get light from the south side otherwise no plants would survive there except a few cacti and succulentae aphyllae, which are fairly few.
Question 3 is again taken up; in Linnaeus’s opinion the building was too tall, with the result that the floor would be cold as all heat rises. Thus, under the roof it would be very hot.
Linnaeus’s answer to question 4 is that the room appears to be too short, the longer the better, an inside width of 8 ells is the most suitable.
Of course the pipes could be made perpendicular up and down, on the rear wall, but the supports at c would cause too much shade and keep the warmth away from the sides of the windows, where most warmth is required; something that is achieved with horizontal piping.
Linnaeus closes by saying that all the rest seems to be satisfactory.
In a postscript, Linnaeus apologises that there had been no time to write a fair copy of the letter.