Three Autograph Letters Signed (all 'Clifton') from Edward Henry Stuart Bligh, Lord Clifton (later 7th Earl of Darnley) to Rev. C. W. Shepherd of Trotterscliffe, all concerning Kent natural history. With 15 page list of 'Funghi, East Kent'.
All 4to, with the letters totalling 22 pp, and the list of 'Funghi, East Kent' of 15 pp. All items clear and complete. Three leaves with light staining (one with short closed tear), otherwise all in good condition, on aged paper. All three in envelopes (lacking stamps), addressed by Clifton and with his seal in red wax. ONE. 4 October 1889. 4to, 12 pp. Begins: 'It seems a long time since we had a ramble on the Cuxton and Ralling hills from Cobham, and when I killed a viper; and I have been much amused at the apparent incredulity of a brother B.O.U. at the Dumpton Park rarities! There would seem to be some little confusion between you and my mother on two points, viz. how much occurred in my garden, and how much in the outer park, which is 55 acres, or nearly'. In the rest of the letter Clfiton discusses Kentish flora and birds. 'I have been tenant since June 1884 - one or two of my rarities have come to nothing, e.g. Bonaparte's fall (immature) last year.' Reference to 'a very handsome bird till the birdstuffer (a wretch named Davis of Dartford) spoilt it by wrenching off the bristles'. TWO. 22 August 1891. 4to, 2 pp. His sisters have told him that Shepherd is 'very fond of funghi', so he is enclosing 'a list of 80 funghi or fungus-like cryptogams'. The LIST (4to, 15 pp) is headed 'Fungi, East Kent', in six sections: A, 'Low forms of fungus, or lichen?'; B, 'Tree Fungi'; C, 'Cluster fungi'; D, 'ordinary agarics', Boleti, Lycoperdon. THREE: 14 September 1891. 4to, 8 pp. Mainly responding to Shepherd's comments on his list, and beginning 'The chantarelles duly arrived this morning and were very good both in smell and taste.' Ends with description of 'a biggish bat' which was 'caught in the house' the previous night, 'of the colour of a fox-cub with sharp ears and tragus and a very black, short muzzle; this may have been Natterer's Bat'. Note: He was brother of Ivo Bligh, cricketer founder of the Ashes, and also played with him for Kent.