[Eugen Bleuler, Swiss psychiatrist who coined the terms 'schizophrenia', 'schizoid', 'autism' and 'ambivalence'.] Typed Letter Signed ('Bleuler'), in German, requesting information on the manifestation of 'eine psyche-artige Funktion' in plants.

Eugen Bleuler [Paul Eugen Bleuler] (1857-1939), Swiss psychiatrist and eugenicist, who coined such psychiatric terms as 'schizophrenia', 'schizoid', 'autism' and 'ambivalence'
Publication details: 
On his letterhead, Zurich, Switzerland; 5 March 1939.
SKU: 21650

1p, 4to. In good condition, lightly aged. Folded twice. Written a few months before Bleuler's death to an unnamed recipient ('Liebster Freund!'), regarding the possibility of consciousness within the plant kingdom. As a nonbotanist ('als Nichtbotaniker') Bleuler has no knowledge of 'die Falle, wo Pflanzen Gedichtnis oder sonst eine psyche-artige Funktion zeigen', with the exception of 'der Mimosen', and it strikes him ' dass ich eigentlich die Pflicht hatte, das Material so weit als moglich zu kennen, bevor ich etwas drucken lasse'. He wonders whether the recipient or his colleagues working on the subject can find him with a book giving information 'uber diese Dinge', although he fears that no such book exists. From the distinguished autograph collection of the psychiatrist Richard Alfred Hunter (1923-1981), whose collection of 7000 works relating to psychiatry is now in Cambridge University Library. Hunter and his mother Ida Macalpine had a particular interest in the illness of King George III, and their book 'George III and the Mad Business' (1969) suggested the diagnosis of porphyria popularised by Alan Bennett in his play 'The Madness of George III'.