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Charles Darwin Biography – The Father of Modern Evolution-Theory

Charles Robert Darwin was a British Naturalist and Author, born to a wealthy society doctor Robert Darwin and Susannah Wedgwood at Shrewsbury, Shropshire, England on February 12, 1809. He is one of the first evolutionary biologists who conceptualised the theory of evolution and natural selection through his famous works.

Charles Darwin BiographyPHOTO BY FLICKR.COM/SERKEL

Charles Darwin - Early Life

Born to Darwin and Wedgewood clans, Charles Darwin enjoyed professional and social advantages. From his childhood, Darwin showed interest in collecting specimens and doing chemical investigations. He studied medicine at the University of Edinburgh and abandoned it after 2 years.His friendships with Zoologist Robert Grant and Geologist Robert Jameson during this period instigated his interest in knowing the history of Earth. While studying Theology in Christ College, Cambridge, Darwin was keen in collecting geological specimens and plants with his cousin William Darwin Fox’s guidance and pursued Botany lessons from Reverend John Henslow. For further discoveries, Darwin set out on a world expedition in HMS Beagle in 1831.

Creationism - Challenging Old Paradigms

Sailing through H M S Beagle, Darwin extensively worked on the concept of creationism and the theory of natural selection. While visiting various places and islands on the way, he collected fossils and specimens of living organisms and observed that similar species have differed structure and eating habits from island to island. In contradictory to the history of creationism by several religions, Darwin’s zoological and geological discoveries denote that “advantageous traits on species were passed on to later generations and less advantageous traits gradually disappeared”. These notes were later published as “The Voyage of The Beagle”.

Origin of Species - Foundation of Modern Biology

Darwin worked on his discoveries on the origin of species and natural selection for over 20 years and published them in the book “On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection” in 1859. The book received wide recognition. However, it generated a lot of controversy and was rejected outright by various religions. Darwin\'s theory of evolution states that life evolved by a combination of processes called natural selection and not by a Creator. It also states that the survival or extinction of each species is determined by its ability to adapt to its environment. Even with modifications in his theories, Darwin’s theory remains the basis of evolutionary theory.In 1839, Charles Darwin married his cousin Emma Wedgwood and had 10 children. He died on April 19, 1882 and is buried at Westminster Abbey.Picture Source: flickr.com/serkel

Written by René Seifert

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