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Eternal EphemeraAdaptation and the Origin of Species from the Nineteenth Century Through Punctuated Equilibria and Beyond$
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Niles Eldredge

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780231153164

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231153164.001.0001

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Darwin and the Beagle

Darwin and the Beagle

Experimenting with Transmutation, 1831–1836

(p.75) 2 Darwin and the Beagle
Eternal Ephemera

Niles Eldredge

Columbia University Press

This chapter discusses the adventures of Charles Darwin, mainly in South America, during the five-year voyage of the HMS Beagle. The possibility of Darwin engaging with the concept of transmutation is evident through his Geological Notes, Zoological Notes, Diary, and letters sent to John Stevens Henslow, his Cambridge botany teacher. Darwin was clearly considering transmutational notions as soon as he started his field work on the Beagle, and became a fuly fledged transmutationist by the time he wrote the latter half of the Red Notebook in early 1837. Darwin's earliest analysis of transmutation was generally more Brocchian than Lamarckian; the chapter concludes with Darwin's admission of this fact in a letter addressed to Leonard Jenyns in 1844.

Keywords:   Charles Darwin, HMS Beagle, transmutation, Red Notebook, Brocchian transmutation, Leonard Jenyns

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