This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
There is no evidence that hybridization (or crossing the sexes of plants of the same genera together, to produce new varieties in the progeny) was known to the nations of antiquity, although grafting and inarching was commonly known and practised, by the Romans at least On the contrary, that great philosopher, Lord Bacon, informs us that the "compounding or mixture of kinds of plants is not found out, which, nevertheless, if it be possible, is more at command than that of living creatures; wherefore, it was one of the most notable experiments touching plants to find it out, for so you may yet have great variety of new fruits and flowers yet unknown." Quite right, as we of this generation know full well; and we see how clearly he foresaw (two hundred and fifty years ago) the results which would follow the "notable experiments" he suggested; "for," added he, "grafting does it not; that mendeth the fruit, or doubleth the flowers, but it hath not the power to make a new kind, for the scion overruleth the stock".