- Charles Darwin (1809-1882)
- Interested in nature as a kid, studied medicine, decided to be a clergyman.
- In 1831 when Darwin is 22, a professor gets him a job as a naturalist on a round-the-world voyage (H.M.S. Beagle).
- H.M.S. Beagle specifications: 10 gun brig, 90 foot hull, 24 foot beam, 76 people on Darwin's cruise.
- Read Lyell's Principle's of Geology... uniformitarianism!
- He returned to England in 1836 with lots of plant, animal, fossil and geologic specimens.
Darwin's next 22 years
- In poor health, he rarely leaves home.
- Spends the years slowly examining his and others specimens and refining theories.
- Writes an essay (unpublished) in 1844.
- 1858 Darwin receives a letter from Alfred Wallace (1823-1913) describing natural selection !
- Lyell presents Darwin's paper and Wallace's manuscript in London.
His two Major Theses
- Descent with modification:
- "...all species, living and extinct, have descended, without interruption, from one or a few original forms of life." 1
- This is quite different from the biblical fixed species or Lamarck's transformational theory.
- Natural Selection
- Fuytuyma, Douglas J. (2005) Evolution. MA: Sinauer Assoc.