On the Origin of Species: By Means of Natural Selection Or the Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life

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Cosimo, Inc., 1 мар. 2007 г. - Всего страниц: 328
On the Origin of Species, published in 1859, is widely accepted as the seminal work in modern biology. Through careful observation, Charles Darwin explains how traits can be selected for within a population. This is easily observed in the artificial selection of farm animals, for instance. Darwin's theory caused an uproar that can still be heard today by refuting the Christian doctrine of created breeds, in which all species that exist now have always existed just as they are. It is the very publication of this work that gave Charles Darwin his place of prominence in the history of the theory of evolution, because while he was not the first to suggest such a mechanism, his book and its exhaustive studies made the information widely available. English scientist, naturalist, and geologist CHARLES DARWIN (1809-1882) revolutionized science, especially biology, with his theory of evolution through natural selection. As a passenger aboard the Beagle, Darwin became intrigued by the existence of different species in different geographical locations, which aided in the development of his theory. In addition to The Origin of Species, he is also remembered for The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex and The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals.

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Стр. 307 - There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being evolved.
Стр. 126 - If it could be proved that any part of the structure of any one species had been formed for the exclusive good of another species, it would annihilate my theory, for such could not have been produced through natural selection.
Стр. 119 - If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed, which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down.
Стр. 1 - When on board HMS Beagle, as naturalist, I was much struck with certain facts in the distribution of the organic beings inhabiting South America, and in the geological relations of the present to the past inhabitants of that continent.
Стр. 82 - The limbs divided into great branches, and these into lesser and lesser branches, were themselves once, when the tree was...
Стр. 47 - Battle within battle must ever be recurring with varying success ; and yet in the longrun the forces are so nicely balanced, that the face of nature remains uniform for long periods of time, though assuredly the merest trine would often give the victory to one organic being over another.
Стр. 45 - ... as in this one being hurt. So it is when we travel northward, but in a somewhat lesser degree, for the number of species of all kinds, and therefore of competitors, decreases northward ; hence, in going northward or in ascending a mountain, we far oftener meet with stunted forms, due to the directly injurious action of climate, than we do in proceeding southward or in descending a mountain.
Стр. 44 - The action of climate seems at first sight to be quite independent of the struggle for existence ; but in so far as climate chiefly acts in reducing food, it brings on the most severe struggle between the individuals, whether of the same or of distinct species, which subsist on the same kind of food.
Стр. 49 - ... which it comes into competition for food or residence, or from which it has to escape, or on which it preys. This is obvious in the structure of the teeth and talons of the tiger ; and in that of the legs and claws of the parasite which clings to the hair on the tiger's body. But in the beautifully plumed seed of the dandelion, and in the flattened and fringed legs of the water-beetle, the relation seems at first confined to the elements of air and water.
Стр. 307 - Hence we may look with some confidence to a secure future of great length. And as natural selection works solely by and for the good of each being, all corporeal and mental endowments will tend to progress towards perfection.

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Charles Robert Darwin, born in 1809, was an English naturalist who founded the theory of Darwinism, the belief in evolution as determined by natural selection. Although Darwin studied medicine at Edinburgh University, and then studied at Cambridge University to become a minister, he had been interested in natural history all his life. His grandfather, Erasmus Darwin, was a noted English poet, physician, and botanist who was interested in evolutionary development. Darwin's works have had an incalculable effect on all aspects of the modern thought. Darwin's most famous and influential work, On the Origin of Species, provoked immediate controversy. Darwin's other books include Zoology of the Voyage of the Beagle, The Variation of Animals and Plants Under Domestication, The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex. Charles Darwin died in 1882.

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