Department of Statistics; University of California
367 Evans Hall # 3860; Berkeley, CA 94720-3860
Various enumerations of labeled trees and forests, including Cayley's formula n n\Gamma2 for the number of trees labeled by [n], and Cayley's multinomial expansion over trees, are derived from the following coalescent construction of a sequence of random forests (R n ; R n\Gamma1 ; : : : ; R 1 ) such that R k has uniform distribution over the set of all forests of k rooted trees labeled by [n]. Let R n be the trivial forest with n root vertices and no edges. For n k 2, given that R n ; : : : ; R k have been defined so that R k is a rooted forest of k trees, define R k\Gamma1 by addition to R k of a single edge picked uniformly at random from the set of n(k \Gamma 1) edges which when added to R k yield a rooted forest of k \Gamma 1 trees. This coalescent construction is related to a model for a physical process of clustering or coagulation, the additive coalescent in which a system of masses is subject to binary coalescent collisions, with each pair of masses of magnitude...