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Darwin Correspondence Project

From Adolph Reuter   6 April 1873

Pfaueninsel near | Potsdam

the 6.4.73.

Dear Sir!

Because You have been always so very kind and indulgent with me, so I hope it will not be impolite from me, when I take me the liberty to send again a letter and also the photographie of a curiosity to You.1

Indeed a very interesting animal which has been shooted the last year by the Prince Fred. Charles2 in the forest of Glinicke about 114 hour far from Potsdam.

The roebuck must have been diseased, then the Genitalia has been very small and perhaps the cause of that, the horns were surrounded with an excrescense till to the eyes.—3

The head of the roebuck has been stuffed and is now at Glinicke, the castle used for the purposes of the chasse of the Prince Fred. Charles4

I have yet collected a great number of interesting examples of domestication etc. which I send you with the next letter, when it will not be molesting for You?—

With my best wishes for Your health I remain my dearest Sir | Your | most obedient servant. | A. Reuter.

CD annotations

3.1 The roebuck … eyes.— 3.3] scribbled over blue crayon


The photograph has not been found.
Prince Friedrich Karl of Prussia.
The roe-deer is Capreolus capreolus. For more on the correlation between abnormalities in genitalia and antler formation, see Rörig 1907. Rörig discussed specimens from Glienicke, but not the one mentioned here (see Rörig 1907, p. 11).
Schloss Klein-Glienicke was the hunting retreat of Prince Friedrich Karl of Prussia (ADB).


ADB: Allgemeine deutsche Biographie. Under the auspices of the Historical Commission of the Royal Academy of Sciences. 56 vols. Leipzig: Duncker & Humblot. 1875–1912.

Rörig, Adolf. 1907. Gestaltende Correlationen zwischen abnormer Körperkonstitution der Cerviden und Geweihbildung derselben. Archiv für Entwicklungsmechanik 23: 1–150.


Sends photograph of a diseased roebuck shot by Prince Frederick Charles of Prussia.

Letter details

Letter no.
Adolf Reuter
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Pfauen Insel, near Potsdam
Source of text
DAR 176: 128
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 8844,” accessed on 24 September 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 21