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the Companion to the Botanical Magazine, it is
Other Varieties. Bosc mentions, 1. le Chêne à Trochets, or Chêne à petits Glands, which has the leaves velvety beneath; 2. le Chêne à Feuilles découpées, which has the leaves deeply lobed, and very small; 3. le Chêne laineux, or Chêne des Collines, which has also the leaves deeply lobed, velvety beneath, and pubescent above; 4. le Chêne noirâtre, which has the acorns very large, and almost solitary; and the leaves large, and pubescent beneath. This last variety must not be confounded with the Q. nìgra of America, or the Chêne noir of Secondat, which is the Q. Taúzin. Bosc also mentions that "he thinks the Chêne mâle of Secondat, the Quércus latifòlia mas quæ brevi pediculo est of Bauhin, different from the chêne mâle, or Q. sessiliffòra, of the neighbourhood of Paris." It seems that this variety is known in the Landes under the name of Auzin, or Chêne de malediction; because the country people there believe that any one who cuts down one of these trees, or who sleeps in a house built with any of the timber, will die within the year. Bosc had never seen this variety, though he had traversed the country where it is said to grow. It is described as a low spreading tree, with tortuous branches, of great toughness, and well adapted for ship-building; weighing 75 lb. per cubic foot, and consequently sinking in water. From the name auzin had not Bosc described Q. Taúzin separately, we should have supposed this kind to be that species. Le Chêne de Haies is also mentioned by Bosc, under the head of Q. sessiliflòra, as common on the Jura, and in the mountains of the Vosges, where it is planted for hedges, seldom growing above the height of 6 ft. or 8 ft. The shoots are used for basket-making and tying bundles. The leaves are like those of Q. pedunculata, but the acorns are sessile. It is said not to change its nature by transplantation; and hence Bosc thinks that it may be a distinct species. (Nouv. Cours d'Ag., art. Chêne.)
In Britain, the varieties are very numerous, though none has hitherto received a technical designation, except the durmast, just described; respect
ing which name Mr. Atkinson observes (Hort. Trans., 2d s., vol. i. p. 336.), that the woodmen in the New Forest call all the oaks that have darkcoloured acorns dunmast (of which word durmast is supposed to be a corruption); and that dun-coloured acorns are found both on Q. pedunculata and Q. sessiliflora. A variety of Q. sessiliflòra was found by Mr. Borrer in North Devon, with large leaves, oblique at
the apex, as shown in fig. 1574. These leaves are not quite so long as those of one of Mr. Bree's varieties (fig. 1584.), which differ from Mr. Borrer's in being pointed at the apex. The only account which we are aware of, that has been given of other British varieties of Q. sessiliflòra, is that by the Rev. W. T. Bree, in the Gardener's Magazine, vol. xii. p. 571. The varieties there mentioned were all found at Corley, in the parish of Allesley. Mr. Bree's communication was accompanied by 15 dried specimens, 5 of which we have figured, and the rest shortly described. "When you examine these specimens," Mr. Bree observes, "I think you will come to the conclusion that our two so-called species of oak are mere varieties; but, though there are sessile oaks bearing fruit on peduncles, and pedunculated oaks bearing almost sessile fruit, there is yet a certain undescribable something about the trees, by means of which I can always distinguish each, without minutely examining either the acorns or the leaf-stalks. There is little difference in the general form and outline of the two trees when full grown; but young seedlings of Q. sessiliflora bear their leaves close to the stem, and not on footstalks; so that, in this stage of their growth, it is difficult to distinguish them from Q. pedunculata. Q. sessilifòra generally bears small acorns; but it sometimes produces very fine large ones. The acorns, when ripe, have very generally a red or pinkish tinge; so that, in nine cases out of ten, they are distinguished by looking at the fallen acorns only." The specimens which accompanied Mr. Bree's communication are thus described: :1
"Q. s. 1.-Acorns large, ovate, quite sessile, and growing in clusters of four or five. Leaves from 5 in. to 5 in. in length.
"Q. s. 2.-Acorns large, quite sessile, and growing singly, or in clusters of two or three, as in the preceding specimen, but closer together on the branches.
Q. s. 3. Very large leaves, and very small long acorns; one of the latter sessile, and the other with a footstalk, of about 3-8th in. in length.
"Q. s. 4-Acorns of three times the diameter of those of the last specimen, and about twice their length.
"Q. s. 5.-Acorns with a short peduncle. Two specimens from the same tree. In one specimen, the peduncles are 1 in. long; in the other, scarcely in. The form of the leaves, their yellowish green and long footstalks, and the large buds in their axils, leave no doubt whatever of these specimens belonging to Q. sessiliflora. "Q. s. 6.-Acorns single, or in clusters of from two to five, on peduncles varying from in. to 1 in. in length. One of the peduncles has an abortive sessile acorn at its base; two acorns, about in. from: each other on its length; and its extremity terminates in a large well-formed leaf-bud. The acorns are long, and very much resemble those of Q. pedunculata. "Q. s. 7.-Acorns small and round, sessile in some cases, but with short footstalks in others; the leaves of a darker green, approaching nearer to those of Q. pedunculàta than in the case of any of the preceding specimens; though, from their appearance, long footstalks, and large buds, there can be no doubt of their belonging to Q. sessiliflora.
"Q. s. 8.-Leaves but little laciniated, and resembling those of Q. pedunculata; broad,
with long footstalks, pale green. (See fig. 1575.)
"Q. s. 9.-Acorns on a very short peduncle. Leaves with an unusually long petiole, of a darker green, much narrower in proportion to their length than in any of the preceding varieties (See fig. 1576.) "Q. s. 10.-Leaves regularly and deeply laciniated, regularly notched, and almost serrated. A totally different specimen from any of the preceding ones. (See fig. 1577.)
"Q. s. 11.-The peduncles 1 in. in length, in some cases clothed with acorns on the sides, and with a terminal one; some solitary and quite sessile. A very handsome and remarkable specimen. The acorns long, like those of Q. pedunculata.
"Q. s. 12.-Acorns on pedunclesin. in length; the acorns long, but the foliage and buds decidedly those of Q. sessilifidra.
"Q. s. 13.-Acorns very long and pointed, sessile. Leaves numerous, of a darker green than usual. A very remarkable variety. (See fig. 1578.)
66 Q. s. 14.-Acorns round, and on short peduncles. Leaves broad, and yellowish green.
"Q. s. 15 hybrida.-Acorns on very short peduncles, and petioles longer than usual; thus
approaching to Q. sessilifidra, yet resembling a true Q. pedunculata. There is something in the leaves, in their rather long petioles, and in the large buds in their axils, which reminds us of Q. sessiliflora; but still, taking the slenderness of the wood, the colour of the leaves, their form, their number, the small buds, and the great length of the acorn, the specimen appears to belong to Q. pedunculata. This specimen, Mr. Bree
informs us, is from a genuine tree of Q. pedunculata, although in some of its characters it apparently approaches Q. sessilifiòra. Perhaps it may be a hybrid between the two species; for which reason we have called it Q. s. hýbrida. (See fig. 1579.)
Some other remarkable varieties, mentioned by Mr. Borrer as having been seen by him in Devonshire, will be found in a succeeding page, under the head of Geography.
Q. pedunculata and Q. sessiliflòra, though sufficiently distinct to be considered species, yet, being very generally found growing together in a wild state, and being used indiscriminately for all the purposes to which the oak is applicable, may be most conveniently treated of together. We might, indeed, in giving their description and geography, treat of them separately; but, in the history and statistics of the two trees, this would be impossible; since it is not known, at this moment, whether the largest and the oldest oaks of Britain belong chiefly to Q. pedunculata or to Q. sessiliflòra. We shall first notice the doubts which exist among botanists as to the species to which the term Ròbur was applied by the ancients; and then proceed to treat of Q. pedunculàta and Q. sessiliflòra conjointly, under the name of the British Oak.
Q. Ròbur. The word Ròbur, according to some, is taken from robus, the obsolete form of rubeus, red; which, as Burnet observes, would seem a fit name for the red-wooded oak. Festus Pompeius says (lib. i.), “ Materiam quæ plurimas venas rufi coloris habet robur dictam." According to others, Robur is applied to the oak from robur, strength, in allusion to the quality of the wood; and this we think the more probable derivation. Much doubt has been entertained by botanists as to what species or variety the term Robur was applied to by Pliny. That author says (lib. xvi. c. 8.):"Glans optima in quercû, atque grandissima, mox esculo; nam roboris parva; cerro tristis, horrida, echinato calice, seu castanea:" that is, "the largest and best acorn is that of the Quércus, next that of the E'sculus; for that of the Ròbur is small; and then that of the Cérris, rough, and covered with a bristly calyx, like the chestnut." From this passage Secondat arrives at the following conclusion: that the Quércus of Pliny is the chêne blanc (Q. pedunculata Willd.); the E'sculus, the chêne mâle (Q. sessiliflora Sm.); and the Robur, the chêne noir (Q. Taúzin Pers.). Willdenow, and most other Continental botanists, suppose the Ròbur of the ancients to have been Q. sessiliflòra; but Smith, and other English botanists, consider Q. pedunculàta to be the tree referred to. Linnæus included both sorts under the specific name of Ròbur; seeming to regard them as varieties of each other. His definition is so framed that it will include both species: "Q. Robur, foliis deciduis, oblongis, superne latioribus: sinubus acutioribus: angulis obtusis." The distinctive characters of petiolated and subsessile leaves, of pedunculated and sessile acorns, &c., are entirely omitted; and, when the more acute observations of subsequent botanists again led to their separation, the subspecific synonymes, longo pediculo, and brevi pediculo vel sessiliflòra, by which as varieties they had been previously known, became the specific names of Q. pedunculata and Q. sessilifiòra, The classic adjunct Ròbur, under which Linnæus included both species, was restrained by Smith to the first, and was by Willdenow given to the second; and while Willdenow has been followed by the Continental botanists, Smith has been followed by those of Britain. The wood of Q. pedunculata is whitish, varying to drab; that of Q. sessiliflòra, whitish brown, varying to amber; while that of Q. Taúzin is much darker than either, so much so that the French call it chêne noir. Burnet, confounding the wood of the Q. Taúzin with that of Q. sessiliflòra var. pubéscens, says: "The wood is of a deep reddish brown, very like that of old chestnut. Hence I cannot but agree with Martyn, that this is the true Robur of the ancients; and, if the Linnæan varieties are to be elevated to the rank of species, to this the appellation Ròbur undoubtedly belongs." (Aman. Quer., fol. 3.) Burnet, finding that Pliny describes the quality of the wood
of the Robur as corrupting and rotting in the sea, concludes that the term never can apply to our English oak. He supposes that it belongs to Q. s. pubescens, confounding, as Martyn does, that variety with Q. Taúzin, which is not even a native of Britain, and is by no means common on the Continent; but, as the wood of Q. sessiliflòra approaches nearer to that of Q. Taúzin than the wood of Q. pedunculata, our own opinion is, that Willdenow and Burnet have approached nearer to the truth than Smith.
We have, however, deemed it most convenient to follow Linnæus, in adopting the term Robur to designate a group of closely allied species, or perhaps only varieties.
Description. According to most authors and observers, there is little or no difference in magnitude or general appearance between the entire full-grown trees of Q. pedunculata and Q. sessiliffòra; though some affirm that the former is a low spreading tree, and the latter a tall conical one. Fig. 1580. is given
by that eminent artist J. G. Strutt, as characteristic of the general form of both species. Both are described by Smith as large trees; and by Willdenow as trees growing from 30 ft. to 50 ft. high, and as enduring for 500 years. According to Bosc (Mém. sur les Chênes, &c.), Q. sessilifòra may be known by its spreading branches, and Q. pedunculata by its comparatively fastigiate branches and pyramidal form. Some, on the contrary, assert that Q. sessiliflòra becomes a loftier and more pyramidal tree than Q. pedunculata; and this is said to be particularly the case in Wyre Forest, where, it is stated by Mr. Pearson, gardener to W. L. Childe, Esq., one of the principal proprietors of the forest, to be almost as different in appearance from Q. pedunculata, as Pópulus fastigiàta is from P. monilífera. At Ken Wood and Woburn Abbey, it cannot be said that the difference in magnitude and general form is remarkable. We are strongly inclined to believe that there is no important and constant difference between the mode of growth of the two species; because we have found individuals of the one