RECORD: Darwin, C. R. The immersion of leaves in a solution of sugar [draft of `Insectivorous plants' pp. 293-4] (1874-1875). SA-Haandskrift394A[.1] (Darwin Online,

REVISION HISTORY: Scanned by Jakob Bek-Thomsen, transcribed by Darwin in Denmark. RN1

NOTE: The verso of this fragment of a draft of Insectivorous plants (pp. 293-4) was later used by Darwin's son George for mathematical notes. George Darwin later presented the sheet to Dr Victor Albeck in 1903. Since 1927 it has been preserved in the State and University Library, Aarhus, Denmark. See the letter from George Darwin here.

Compare with the similar manuscript fragment given to Christ's College in 1909 and displayed in the centenary exhibition there. Click here.

See other notes and papers on Darwin's book on insectivorous plants here.

Editorial symbols used in the transcription:
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Reproduced with the permission of Darwin in Denmark, the State Library, Aarhus, Denmark and William Huxley Darwin. With thanks to Peter Kjærgaard, Jakob Bek-Thomsen, Michael Jørgensen and other members of the Darwin in Denmark team.

[1 recto]

The excitement thus caused by the solution of sugar acts for a much longer time on the sensitive filaments than a mere touch.

Of the thin leaves which had been immersed for a short time in the solution and then washed by a syringe inserted between the lobes, one reexpanded after two days; a second after seven days; and the third not until nine days had elapsed. Whereas after a simple touch a leaf reexpands, as we shall hereafter see, within about twentyfour hours. The leaf on which a drop of the solution

[1 verso]

[mathematical notes by G. H. Darwin, not transcribed]

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Citation: John van Wyhe, editor. 2002-. The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online. (

File last updated 2 July, 2012