Wrote Letter 12 of 1675-08-14 (AB 18) to Henry Oldenburg

Date: 
August 14, 1675
Standard reference information
Cole's number: 
12
AB/CL number: 
18
AB/CL volume: 
1

Text of the letter in the original Dutch and in English translation from Alle de Brieven. The Collected Letters at the DBNL - De Digitale Bibliotheek voor de Nederlandse Letteren


Leeuwenhoek wrote this letter to Henry Oldenburg about blood, taste of saps, sugar, and salt, mechanics of taste and digestion.

One of only two letters published in volume 10 of Philosophical Transactions, this one replied to Oldenburg's letter of April 12 (lost), which was itself a reply to AVL's letter of March 26.

In this August letter, Leeuwenhoek reported his observations of the texture of blood and the parallel role of sap in plants. He also discussed the structure of sugar and salt and the difference in how they taste. Many of these observations, he noted, were done at Oldenburg's request.

In the letter's opening (not published in Philosophical Transactions), Leeuwenhoek wrote:

You recommend me to call in the assistance of other persons, capable of judging said things. Allow me to say, Sir, that there are very few people in this town that could assist me, and as to people that come to visit me from other places, well, recently I had one here who rather intended to dress himself in plumage borrowed from me, than to lend me a helping hand.

No figures accompanied this letter.