The View From the Castle: To pause by a New England pond, as autumn fades, leads to intimations of mortality and to pleasure in the limits to knowledge

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Smithsonian Secretary S. Dillon Ripley shares intimate reflections about his duck pond at Litchfield, Connecticut. Ripley also expresses his joy that three ethologists shared the Nobel prize in medicine for observing nature. For Ripley, high-tech science removes the mystery and beauty of his work as a naturalist.


  • Lorenz, Konrad 1903-
  • Tinbergen, Niko 1907-
  • Von Frisch, Karl


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography


Although Ripley does not give the name of the pond at his home in Litchfield, Connecticut, it is called Paddling Ponds.

Contained within

Smithsonian Vol. 5, no. 8 (Journal)

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,


November 1974


  • Nobel Prizes
  • Animal behavior
  • Ponds
  • Castle View
  • Ethnologists
  • Ecology

Physical description

p. 6

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