Reference numberMS/251/5
TitleLetter from John Playfair, Edinburgh, to William Buckland, Professor of Mineralogy, Oxford
Date9 July 1819
DescriptionHe has just received Buckland's letter, having been from home, but will now supply the information that Buckland needs. He comments in favour of Mr Grafton [probably John Grafton ( 1796-1872) gas engineer and an assistant of Samuel Clegg (1781-1861)] who had been working on gas lighting the streets of Edinburgh and illuminating some private houses. Playfair accompanied Grafton over the works some time ago and was impressed with everything that had been executed. The work is not the result of any one individual, but is the result of much experimental enquiry. However, Grafton is deserving of great praise. Grafton occasionally attended last winter's lectures on natural philosophy and therefore Playfair has the opportunity to speak with him: 'He seemed a sharp, intelligent man, well acquainted with practical engineering, especially the parts of it most connected with his immediate employment'.

Playfair is glad that Buckland has seen so much of [Georges] Cuvier, who is 'one of the most distinguished men of the present day'. Playfair would be intrigued to know what Cuvier concluded about the bones. Playfair thinks that the parts of the Old World were far more separated than in the present globe.
Physical descriptionOn paper
Access statusOpen
Fellows associated with this archive
NA8269Playfair; John (1748 - 1819)1748 - 1819
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