"I'm not at all sure," Under-Secretary Sternwheeler said, "that I fully understand the necessity for your ... ah ... absenting yourself from your post of duty, Mr. Retief. Surely this matter could have been dealt with in the usual way—assuming any action is necessary."
The girl laughed. "If you think all Kansas a place of sweet perfumes, smell this, Lee-san," she said. She took a covered dish and opened it. "This is takuwan," she said. A smell strong as that of limburger cheese made itself known in the room. "It is pickled turnip, made in the old manner of our island forefathers on Earth."
"Hah! In that case...."
"And you, Hatcher?"
Botanical Science is made up of three distinct branches of knowledge, Classification founded on Morphology, Phytotomy, and Vegetable Physiology. All these strive towards a common end, a perfect understanding of the vegetable kingdom, but they differ entirely from one another in their methods of research, and therefore presuppose essentially different intellectual endowments. That this is the case is abundantly shown by the history of the science, from which we learn that up to quite recent times morphology and classification have developed in almost entire independence of the other two branches. Phytotomy has indeed always maintained a certain connection with physiology, but where principles peculiar to each of them, fundamental questions, had to be dealt with, there they also went their way in almost entire independence of one another. It is only in the present day that a deeper conception of the problems of vegetable life has led to a closer union between the three. I have sought to do justice to this historical fact by treating the parts of my subject separately; but in this case, if the present work was to be kept within suitable limits, it became necessary to devote a strictly limited space only to each of the three historical delineations. It is obvious that the weightiest and most important matter only could find a place in so narrow a frame, but this I do
But botanists could not rest content with merely naming natural groups; it was necessary to translate the indistinct feeling, which had suggested the groups of Linnaeus and Bernard de Jussieu, into the language of science by assigning clearly recognised marks; and this was from this time forward the task of systematists from Antoine Laurent de Jussieu and de Candolle to Endlicher and Lindley. But it cannot be denied, that later systematists repeatedly committed the fault of splitting up natural groups of affinity by artificial divisions and of bringing together the unlike, as Cesalpino and the botanists of the 17th century had done before them, though continued practice was always leading to a more perfect exhibition of natural affinities.
"And who attended her? Was it at nooning or evening service? And has she aged, as much I fear she hath?"
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