The young man's dream for training materializes in 1851 when he studies at the University of Vienna. He is interested in the use of mathematics. This son of peasants chooses to study hybridization of animals and plants without abandoning meteorology which was the passion of his life.
His superiors do not appreciate his observations on mice mating. He now selects a plant. Peas have differentiated characters which are easy to identify. From 1854 to 1863 Gregor Mendel performs the statistical analysis of seven characteristics observed on 28,000 peas in the garden of the monastery.
The choice was suitable. The proportion of the two colors was 3 to 1 in the population of these plants but the hybridization between two different colors provides a homogeneous population in the first generation. Mendel guesses that an invisible factor makes dominant one of the colors. Recombination leads to a return to the normal proportion from the next generation.
In 1861 Mendel was a founder of the Natural History Society in Brünn. He explains his results in two lectures in 1865. The Society publishes his report in 1866 in 47 pages in its proceedings which are distributed to 134 scientific institutions. 40 offprints are provided to the author in the usual tradition for scientific communications. Mendel uses them. Only one addressee responds : he has some doubts.
Elected superior of the monastery in 1868, Mendel is now overloaded. His 1865 lectures remain the only testimony to his invention of the new science of genetics. His work will remain unnoticed until 1900 and the original versions of the report are therefore extremely rare in private hands. An offprint is estimated £ 200K for sale by Christie's in London on July 13, lot 177.
SOLD for £ 240K including premium