People know Charles Darwin as one of the famous figures in biology. Specifically, he is famous for his theory of evolution.
There are many theories talking about evolution, but Darwin’s theory is the most popular theory and it has great influence even until now. Of course, it is also interesting to know more about him.
Darwin’s Early Life
Darwin was born in February 12, 1809. He spent his childhood in Shrewsbury, England. His father was a doctor, but Darwin hated medical education a lot.
He was not considered as brilliant student, but he could study at University of Edinburg in Scotland. At first, he wanted to become an Anglican minister.
He had no idea that he would become botanist. However, it changed when he studied at Cambridge. He got the title for his degree in 1831.
Darwin and Beagle
H.M.S. Beagle became the name of ship for his voyage. Based on the recommendation of his professor, he joined the scientific expedition to South America in 1831.
Darwin’s presence on the ship gave benefit for the captain of the ship. The captain wanted to have scientist on the ship to record and note the whole discoveries. Moreover, it was considered great to have intelligent companion on the ship.
Darwin could collect many specimens from the journey. He also read books of Thomas Malthus and Charles Lyell that gave him insights in evolution.
With those specimens, Darwin started to conduct research. At first, he did not share his finding. However, he met Alfred Russell Wallace who became his partner. His first publication was “Journal of Researches.”
He also contributed in the contents of “Zoology of the Voyage of the Beagle.” It was made my many scientists and Darwin made and edited some parts in there.
Charles Darwin also read the writing of Thomas Malthus. Essay on the Principle of Population became the important references for him in formulating his own ideas on natural selection and survival of the fittest.
Charles Darwin’s Masterpiece
Darwin already formulated his idea and findings in natural selection and evolution. However, he published some years after his friends encouraged him to do so. In November 1859, “On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection” was published.
Darwin already predicted that it would be controversial, especially for those who believe in religion and bible. Actually, it did not talk specifically about human evolution. The topic was then brought in “The Descent of Man.”
These two works made Charles Darwin so famous. The books were used as references. There were also great impacts on science, society, and religion. Although Darwin was not the first one to talk about evolution, his works create biggest impact.
Darwin’s Later Life
In the remaining days of his life, Darwin still worked on other books and published them. He also edited and revised the improved version of the “On the Origin of Species.”
Although there were many controversies, especially the religious ones, he still continued his botanical research. He lived in the countryside in quiet and peaceful life.
On April 19, 1882, he died and he was honored by societies of scientists, so he was buried in Westminster Abbey in London. Instead of many controversies, he was considered as grand figure in science. Even, Charles Darwin was considered as national hero.