WHO WAS CHARLES DARWIN?
Charles Darwin was a gifted naturalist, a prolific writer and author, and one of the most important figures in the history of science. Born on February 12th 1809 in Shropshire, England, he was grandson to Erasmus Darwin - a famous natural philosopher, and Josiah Wedgwood - known for the industrialisation of the production of pottery.
Darwin's scientific career began in 1825 as an apprentice doctor moved home to Scotland in order to study medicine at Edinburgh University.
However, Darwin became disinterested in this subject and neglected his medical studies to spend time on his latest fascination for taxonomy - the classification of living things, and marine invertebrates.
In 1828, Darwin was sent to Cambridge with the intention of studying for a Bachelor of Arts, but once again his focus became diverted, concentrating his energies on beetle collecting, botany, geology and natural philosophy.
Perhaps the cornerstone event of Darwin's life was a five year voyage around the world on the ship HMS Beagle.
This voyage took place between 1831 and 1836, and while the ship's primary mission was to survey and chart coasts to survey and chart the South American coastlines,
At this time, most Europeans believed that the world was created by God in seven days as described in the bible.
On the Beagles historic voyage, Darwin read Lyell's 'Principles of Geology' which suggested that the fossils found in rocks were actually evidence of animals that had lived many thousands or millions of years ago. Lyell's argument was reinforced in Darwin's own mind by the rich variety of animal life and the geological features he saw during his voyage. The breakthrough in his ideas came in the Galapagos Islands, 500 miles west of South America.
Of these, the most important and best known, was his theory of evolution by natural selection. Although, evolutionary ideas had been common since at least the 18th century, Darwin was able to describe how the process of natural selection (Darwins theory of how which evolution occurred) by presenting overwhelming arguments and clear evidence of his position. This path of scientific discovery was backed by extensive 'evolution-based' experimentation.
Darwin worked on his theory for 20 years. After learning that another naturalist, Alfred Russel Wallace, had developed similar ideas, the two made a joint announcement of their discovery in 1858. In 1859 Darwin published 'On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection'.
The book was extremely controversial, because the logical extension of Darwin's theory was that homo sapiens was simply another form of animal. It made it seem possible that even people might just have evolved - quite possibly from apes - and destroyed the prevailing orthodoxy on how the world was created. Darwin was vehemently attacked, particularly by the Church. However, his ideas soon gained currency and have become the new orthodoxy.
Darwin died on 19 April 1882 and was buried in Westminster Abbey.
For related articles click onto:
Ancient Olympic Games
Charles Darwin's Greatest Experiment
Charles Darwins Legacy - 200 years on
Darwin's Theory of Evolution
ROMAN ENGLAND: Who was Gnaeus Julius Agricola?
GREEK HISTORY: Who was Archimedes?
Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder Plot
Hever Castle, Viscount Astor and the Worlds Greatest Pleasure Garden
HMS Victory - Worlds Greatest Warship
LIVING DINOSAURS - The Coelacanth
Knole House and the Ghost with no Name
Lost Tulips of the Dutch Golden Age- Semper Augustus and Viceroy
Majorelle Gardens Morocco
Plants and Trees of the Garden of Eden
Poinsettia History and Tradition Story
RHS Wisley Gardens - A Photographic Walk Through
RMS TITANIC - Father Frank Brownes Photographs
Rome: Gladiator Graveyard Discovered!
Rome: How to get to Villa Adriana from Rome
Rome: How to get to Villa D'Este from Rome
Rome: How to make Roman bread - Panis
Rome: Julius Caesar
Rome: Opening Times for Villa D'Este
Rome: Photographs of and around the Colosseum at Night
Rome: Villa Adriana - Tivoli
Rome: What did Gladiators Eat?
Rome: What did the Romans Eat?
Rome: Who were the Ancient Gladiators?
Sissinghurst Gardens - a secret history
Stories, Myths, Legends and the Folklore of Hellebores
The Evolution and Devolution of Man - Finally explained
The Coelacanth - a living, breathing fossil
The Garden of Eden
The History of the Christmas Tree
The History of Mistletoe Tradition
The History of the Jack O'Lantern Hallowen Pumpkin
The History of the Olympic Games
The History of the Primula Auricula
The History of Rhubarb
The History of the Pineapple
The Legend of the Jack O'Lantern Tradition
The Olympic Games
The Olympic Medal
The Sinking of the Titanic
The Story and History of Common Box
Tulip History and Popular Varieties
What has the Christmas cactus got to do with Christmas?
What is Cork Made of?
Where is the Location of the Garden of Eden
Where is Sissinghurst?
Where is Stonehenge?
Who was Charles Darwin
William Astor, Hever Castle and the Worlds Greatest Pleasure Garden
Who was Archimedes?
Who was Christopher Columbus?
Who was Father Christmas?
Who was Guy Fawkes?
Who was Julius Caesar?
Who was King Canute?
Who was Queen Victoria?
Who was Santa Claus?
William and Kate - First Baby
Photo care of http://11squared.wordpress.com/tag/sketching/ and http://www.darwingame.org/ and http://www.britannica.com/blogs/2010/09/the-hms-beagle-and-charles-darwin-on-the-shores-of-the-galapagos-islands-picture-essay-of-the-day/ and http://famoustourisms.com/2011/05/galapagos-islands-a-haven-for-flora-and-fauna/ and http://www.truthinscience.org.uk/tis2/index.php/component/content/article/53.html and http://worldmixnews.blogspot.com/2011/07/top-10-most-popular-dog-breeds-in-world.html?z#!/2011/07/top-10-most-popular-dog-br eeds-in-world.html and http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2011/feb/26/alfred-russel-wallace-hero-tim-flannery and http://darwin-online.org.uk/darwin.html and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Burlington_House_ILN_1874.jpg and http://spencer.lib.ku.edu/exhibits/darwin/origin_of_the_species.html
Based on an article from http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/darwin_charles.shtml