Tag Archives: Evolution

Today’s Image: Naturalist Charles Darwin (Image: Library of Congress)


Naturalist Charles Darwin

Charles Robert Darwin, born on February 12, 1809, was the English naturalist whose theory of evolution rocked Victorian religion and science. Shortly after his graduation from Cambridge, Darwin sailed as a naturalist with the surveying ship HMS Beagle. During the five-year voyage, Darwin’s observations of wildlife led to the writing of his 1859 book The Origin of the Species, in which he proposed the theory of natural selection. All life, he said, is a struggle for existence and some species are better able to adapt to the environment and survive to pass along their characteristics. In 1871, Darwin wrote Descent of Man, which demonstrated that man and ape could have had a common ancestor. Darwin’s theories were highly controversial and unsettling to those who believed in creationism. Many Victorians condemned Darwin as blasphemous, but many important scientists of the day agreed with his theories.

Image: Library of Congress

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today’s birthday: Charles Darwin (1809)


Charles Darwin (1809)

Darwin was an English naturalist who developed the modern theory of evolution. Along with naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace, he proposed the principle of natural selection: the mechanism by which advantageous variations are passed on to later generations and less advantageous traits slowly disappear. Darwin’s intensely controversial theory of evolution aroused widespread argument and debate among scientists and religious leaders. How did Darwin view religion and God? More… Discuss

quotation: The highest possible stage in moral culture is when we recognize that we ought to control our thoughts. Charles Darwin


The highest possible stage in moral culture is when we recognize that we ought to control our thoughts.

Charles Darwin (1809-1882) Discuss

today’s birthday: Georges Cuvier (1769)


Georges Cuvier (1769)

Cuvier was a renowned French naturalist and zoologist considered the founder of comparative anatomy. He rejected the theory of evolution and instead embraced catastrophism, which proposes that geological changes on Earth have been caused by sudden upheaval rather than by gradual and continuing processes. He also greatly advanced the science of paleontology by reconstructing the soft parts of fossils deduced from their skeletal remains. What extinct flying reptile did Cuvier identify and name? More… Discuss

Evolutionary Theory that Packs a Punch


Evolutionary Theory that Packs a Punch

 

Bones of the skull

Bones of the skull (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dietary changes have long been considered the primary driver of evolutionary changes to human facial structure, but two University of Utah researchers have proposed an alternative, and much more violent, theory. They say that fistfights and not food were the driving force. Evolutionary changes to facial bone structure, they contend, have strengthened the bones most often fractured when humans, usually males of the species, brawl, thereby limiting the injuries participants sustain. More… Discuss

Quotation: Charles Darwin


Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is those who know little, and not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science.

Charles Darwin (1809-1882) Discuss

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QUOTATION: Charles Darwin


It has been a bitter mortification for me to digest the conclusion that the ‘race is for the strong’ and that I shall probably do little more but be content to admire the strides others made in science.

Charles Darwin (1809-1882) Discuss

 

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Today’s Birthday: George Gaylord Simpson (1902)


 Today’s Birthday

George Gaylord Simpson (1902)

 Simpson, an American paleontologist, helped develop the modern biological theory of evolution, drawing on paleontology, genetics, ecology, and natural selection. His contributions to evolutionary theory include a detailed classification of mammals, which is still the standard, and the discovery of the migratory and evolutionary patterns of the prehistoric fauna of the Americas, from which he deduced that species reached adaptive peaks and suffered accidental dispersal. What word did he coin? More… Discuss