link to Talbot Project home page link to De Montfort University home page link to Glasgow University home page
Project Director: Professor Larry J Schaaf

Back to the letter search >

Result number 6 of 46:   < Back     Back to results list   Next >  

Document number: 661
Date: 23 Aug 1815
Recipient: TREVELYAN Walter Calverley
Author: TALBOT William Henry Fox
Collection: Univ of Newcastle Upon Tyne Robinson Library Trevelyan Family Papers
Collection number: WCT 16
Last updated: 29th July 2013

Penrice, <1>
Aug. 23d 1815.

My Dear Trevelyan, /

I am very sorry that in the hurry & confusion of packing up & preparing for my journey, I left behind the Dead Nettle, together with the other plants we found in our walk to London. It is consequently lost. I thank you for the Jungermanniæ, & would be much obliged to you, to send me any others that you have named. The “small green plant” that you found, near Stonehenge, is Thesium linophyllum, Rare, 9 counties, not mentioned in Wiltshire. The larger Pea, is Lathyrus sylvestris, Rare, 24 counties, “Abundant in Somersetshire” – Bot. Guide. It is common here. The lesser Pea, with blue & white flowers, is, Vicia sylvatica, Rare, 22 counties, “In many of the woods near Bath” Bot. guide.

The Grass, is “Poa aquatica“ not rare, – It does not grow at Harrow, <2> but I found it the other day, in Gloucestershire.

(Turn Over)

Your Wallington Pea, was Vicia sylvatica. – Orobus sylvaticus is red & yellow. – Will you send me some Club moss in good fructification? – I can find none. Sphagnum latifolium is here in beautiful fructification: do you want any? Orthotrichum striatum is in fructification also, & abundant. Also Bryum capillare, & Neckera viticulosa, in plenty. – The very rare “Pterogonium Smithii“ grows on a Tree near Penrice. I have as yet found it on no other. – I have found also Lichen saxatilis in good fructification. I have found three curious Fungi –

1. The very singular Hydnum repandum.
2. The Beautiful Nidularia Striata.
3. Agaricus procerus.

‘See Sowerby <3>

The A. procerus is actually a foot high! & with a stem only half an inch thick! – As perhaps you may wish for a description of it, I send you the following, from my own observation. –

Agaricus procerus. Withering. Curtis. Sowerby. Flora Danica. Schæffer. Hudson.

A. colubrinus. Bulliard.

Angl. Tall Agaric.

A single plant on Oxwich point. August 1815.

Root bulbous, with fibres: – bulb twice the thickness of the stalk, inside quite white & spongy.

Stalk a foot high, more than ½ an inch thik, light brown , with black scales, shining & satiny, easily splitting, & hollow within.

Ring an inch & a half from the top of the stem, snow white, very loose & tender.

Pileus horizontal, slightly convex, 5½ by 5 inches cross, light brown, scaly, with a brownish black boss or knob in the centre.

Gills pure white, equal, 1 or 2 in a set, not touching the stem, but all ending in a circular ring or collar, a quarter of an Inch thick, & the same distance from the stem.

If you like this description, I can send you others. I have found a great number of Rare plants, of which I will send you a list in my next, if you wish it. I remain,

Yrs sincerely,
W.H.F. Talbot.

P.S. Yesterday there was a Three Masted Vessel, in sight, bearing Dutch colours, which are so – [illustration] which the ignorant people mistook for a French frigate, with Buonaparte <4> on board, on account of the tricoloured flag; – but in his, the stripes are vertical.

[illustration of a fungus]

[address panel:]
W. C. Trevelyan Esq.
Nr Taunton
Helvella Gelatinosa <5>


1. Penrice Castle and Penrice House, Gower, Glamorgan, 10 mi SW of Swansea: home of Christopher Rice Mansel Talbot.

2. Harrow School: WHFT attended from 1811–1815 and his son Charles from 1855-1859.

3. James Sowerby (1757–1822), artist and scientific illustrator.

4. Napoleon I, Emperor of France (1804–1814/1815)

5. Possibly written in W.C.Trevelyan’s hand at the back of address panel.

Result number 6 of 46:   < Back     Back to results list   Next >