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time：2023-12-03 09:40:50 Source: Originally writtenedit：computer
This passage contains the germ of Mr. Charles Darwin's theory of the origin of species by natural selection:-
"Analogy would lead me to the belief that all animals and plants have descended from one prototype."
Here are a few specimens, his illustrations of the theory:-
"There seems to me no great difficulty in believing that natural selection has actually converted a swim-bladder into a lung or organ used exclusively for respiration." "A swim-bladder has apparently been converted into an air-breathing lung." "We must be cautious in concluding that a bat could not have been formed by natural selection from an animal which at first could only glide through the air." "I can see no insuperable difficulty in further believing it possible that the membrane-connected fingers and forearm of the galeopithecus might be greatly lengthened by natural selection, and this, as far as the organs of flight are concerned, would convert it into a bat." "The framework of bones being the same in the hand of a man, wing of a bat, fin of a porpoise, and leg of a horse, the same number of vertebrae forming the neck of the giraffe and of the elephant, and innumerable other such facts, at once explain themselves on the theory of descent with slow and slight successive modifications."
I do not mean to go through your correspondent's letter, otherwise "I could hardly reprehend in sufficiently strong terms" (and all that sort of thing) the perversion of what I said about Giordano Bruno. But "ex uno disce omnes"--I am, etc.,
DARWIN ON SPECIES: [From the Press, 18 March, 1863.]
Sir--The "Savoyard" of last Saturday has shown that he has perused Darwin's Botanic Garden with greater attention than myself. I am obliged to him for his correction of my carelessness, and have not the smallest desire to make use of any loopholes to avoid being "proved wrong." Let, then, the "Savoyard's" assertion that Dr. Darwin had to a certain extent forestalled Mr. C. Darwin stand, and let my implied denial that in the older Darwin's works passages bearing on natural selection, or the struggle for existence, could be found, go for nought, or rather let it be set down against me.
What follows? Has the "Savoyard" (supposing him to be the author of the article on barrel-organs) adduced one particle of real argument the more to show that the real Darwin's theory is wrong?
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