Darwin & Natural Selection

Evolution by Natural Selection

Posted by Nabilla Gunawan in Biology HL on Tuesday, May 6th, 2014 at 16:30

Charles Darwin

Portrait of Charles Darwin (“Charles Darwin”)

Charles Darwin (12 February 1809 – 19 April 1882) was a British Scientist who formulate the “Evolution by Natural Selection” Theory. He was born in a wealthy family. Darwin planned to follow a medical career during his studies in Edinburgh University, however switched to Cambridge in the latter of his university years. He went to a voyage that aims to conduct a survey on a ship called HMS Beagle.

During this era, European was still strongly driven and controlled by religion, Christianity in particular. They believed that the world was created by God in seven days, according to bible. Darwin’s ideas on evolution were sparked after reading a book called “Principles of Geology”, which suggested that the fossils found in rocks were actually evidence of animals that had lived millions years ago. Darwin’s thoughts were augmented during his voyage as he saw himself the the variety of animal life and geological features. Darwin was much convinced after he visited Galapagos Islands. Darwin noticed that the Finch were closely related, but different in some ways; the birds have different shapes of beak.

Evolution of “Human”

Darwin wrote his theory based on his observations and come up with an idea on how species evolve. He proposed a theory or evolution, stating that evolution occurs by the process of natural selection, stated below:

The animals (or plants) best suited to their environment are more likely to survive and reproduce, passing on the characteristics which helped them survive to their offspring. Gradually, the species evolve over time.

He published his discoveries on 1859, after helding back his theory for almost 20 years. He immediately published his theory “On the Origin of Species by means of Natural Selection” after learning that another naturalist – Alfred Russell Wallace – developed a similar idea. Due to his theory, Darwin was forcefully attacked by the public and the churh. How theory was extremely controverial during that era. But now, majority are able to accept his theory, and in fact some are investigating in more depth.

To see further on Evolution by Natural Selection or Charles Darwin, view the Evolution video Crash Course below:



“Charles Darwin (1809 – 1882).” BBC News. BBC, n.d. Web. 05 May 2014 <http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/darwin_charles.shtml>.

“Charles Darwin.” Panjury. N.p., n.d. Web. <http%3A%2F%2Fwww.panjury.com%2Ftrials%2Fcharles-darwin>.

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