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Darwin's Struggle The Evolution Of The Origin Of Species (BBC)

Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin. Credit: http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/d/charles_robert_darwin/

Charles Darwin was born in England in February of 1809.  Darwin originally went to school for medicine, but switched programs to become a clergyman.  It wasn't until his journey on the HMS Beagle that he became a naturalist by trade.  He died in London in 1882 and was buried in Westminster Abbey.

Charles Darwin and Evolution[]

Charles Darwin (1809-1882) is often credited as the Father of Evolution.  He was the first to publish the theory.  In 1858, after receiving a letter from Alfred Wallce with similar findings, Darwin officially announced his thoughts in a letter to the Linnean Society.  He wrote "Origin of the Species" in 1859 where he outlined his thoughts on Evolution and Natural Selection.  He spent time as a naturalist on the HMS Beagle where he collected specimens of plants and animals.  It was with these specimens that he started to notice differences between individuals and saw that they were adapted for their environment.

Darwin signed on to the HMS Beagle that was to go around the world journey as a naturalist.  On the joruney he formulated his ideas on evolution.  The  map shows the places he visited  while the Beagle made on its trip around the world.  The trip was only suppose to be two years and it took five years. 

Map []

Images darwin trip

Dawson CollgeFiles  (1859). From Darwin's Book Origin of the Species. Retrieved from


On the Origin of Species[]

“If we equate the word Darwinism with the content of the book On the Origin of Species, we can distinguish between five separate concepts:

1. Evolution as such

2. Theory of common descent

3. Gradualism

4. Multiplication of species

5. Natural selection (Mayr 1988, 1991).” (Kutschera and Niklas, 2004)

Other Theories at the Time[]

Nearly 80 years until the majority of biologists adopted natural selection as the major shaping force in organismic evolution as opposed to one of four alternative and very popular concepts:




4.Transmutationism (Kutschera and Niklas, 2004).


Kutschera, U., & Niklas, K. J. (2004). The modern theory of biological evolution: an expanded synthesis. Naturwissenschaften, 91(6), 255-276.

Zimmer, Carl (2010). http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/d/charles_robert_darwin/