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Professor Owen, in 1849 (‘ Nature of Limbs,’ p. 86), wrote as follows :—" The archetypal idea was manifested in the flesh under such diverse modifications, upon this planet, long prior to the existence of those animal species that actually exemplify it. To what natural laws or secondary
.causes the orderly succession and progression of such organic phenomena may have been committed, we, as yet, are ignorant.” In his Address to the British Association, in 1858, he speaks (page 1i.) of “ the axiom of the continuous operation of creative power, or of the ordained becoming of living things.” Farther on (p. xc.), after referring to geographical distribution, he adds, “These phenomena shake our confidence in the conclusion that the Apteryx of New Zealand and the Red Grouse of England were distinct creations in and for those islands respectively. Always, also, it may be well to bear in mind that by the word ‘ creation ’ the zoologist means ‘ a process he knows not what.’ ” He amplifies this idea by adding, that when such cases as that of the Red Grouse are “ enumerated by the zoologist as evidence of distinct creation of the bird in and for such islands, he chiefly expresses that he knows not how the Red Grouse came to be there, and there exclusively ; signifying also by this mode of expressing such ignorance his belief, that both the bird and the islands owed their origin to a great first Creative Cause.”
M. Isidore Geoffroy Saint Hilaire, in his Lectures delivered in 1850 (of which a Résumé appeared in the ‘ Revue et Mag. de Zoolog.,’ Jan. 1851), briefly gives his reason for believing that specific characters “ sont fixes, pour chaque espéce, tant qu’elle se perpétue au milieu des memes circonstances: ils se modifient, si les circonstances ambiantes vienncnt a changer.” “En résumé, l’observation des animaux sauvages démontre déja la variabilité limitée des espéces. Les expériences sur les animaux sauvages devenus domestiques, et sur les animaux domestiques redevenus sauvages, la démontrent plus clairement encore. Ces memes experiences prouvent, de plus, que les differences produites peuvent étre de valeur générique." In his ‘ Hist. Nat. Générale ’ (tom. ii. p. 430, 1859) he amplifies analogous conclusions.
From a circular lately issued it appears that Dr. Freke, in 1851 (‘ Dublin Medical Press,’ p. 322), propounded the doctrine that all organic beings have descended from one primordial form. His grounds of belief and treatment of the subject are wholly different from mine; but as Dr. Freke has now (1861) published his Essay on ‘the Origin of Species by means of Organic Affinity,’ the difficult attempt to give any idea of his views would be superfluous 011 my part.
Mr. Herbert Spencer, in an Essay (originally published in the ‘Leader,’ March, 1852, and republished in his ‘Essays’ in 1858), has contrasted the theories of the Creation and the Development of organic beings with remarkable skill and force. He argues from the analogy of domestic productions, from the changes which the embryos of many species undergo, from the difficulty of distinguishing species and varieties, and from the principle of general gradation, that species have been modified; and he attributes the modification to the change of circumstances. The author (1855) has also treated Psychology on the principle of the necessary acquirement of each mental power and capacity by gradation.
In 1852 (‘ Revue Horticole,’ p. 102) M. Naudin, a distinguished botanist, has expressly stated his belief that species are formed in an analogous manner as varieties are under cultivation ; and the latter process he attributes to man’s power of selection. But he does not show how selection acts under nature. He believes, like Dean Herbert, that species, when nascent, were more plastic than at present. He lays weight on what he calls the principle of finality, “ puissance mystérieuse,‘indéterminée; fatalité pour les uns ; pour les autres,volonté providentielle, dont l’action incessante sur les étres vivants determine, a toutes les époques de l’existence du monde, la forme, le volume, et la durée de chacun d’eux, en raison de sa dcstinée dans l’ordre de choses dont i1 fait partie. C’est cette puissance qui harmonise chaque membre a l’ensemble en l’appropriant a la fonction qu’il doit remplier dansl l’organisme général de la nature, fonction qui est pour lui sa raison d’étre.”*
" From references in Bronn’s ‘ Untersuchungen fiber die Ent— wickelungs~Gesetze’ it appears that the celebrated botanist and palmentologist Unger published, in 1852, his belief that species undergo development and modification. D’Alton, likewise, in Pander and d’Alton’s work on Fossil Sloths, expressed, in 1821, a similar belief. Similar views have, as is well known, been maintained by Oken in his mystical ‘ Natur-Philosophie.’ From other references in Godron’s work ‘ Sur l’Espéce,’_it seems that B0!'_\‘ St. Vincent, Burdach, Poiret, and Fries, have all admitted that new species are continually being produced.
In 1853, a celebrated geologist, Count Keyserling (‘ Bulletin de la Soc. Géolog.,’ 2nd Ser., tom. x. p. 357), suggested that as new diseases, supposed to have been caused by some miasma, have arisen and spread over the world, so at certain periods the germs of existing species may have been chemically affected by circumambient molecules of a particular nature, and thus have given rise to new forms.
In this same year, 1853, Dr. Schaaffhausen published an excellent pamphlet (‘ Verhand. des Naturhist. Vereins der Preuss. Rheinlands,’ &c.), in which he maintains the progressive development of organic forms on the earth. He infers that many species have kept true for long periods, whereas a few have become modified. The distinction of species he explains by the destruction of intermediate graduated forms. “ Thus living plants and animals are not separated from the extinct by new creations, but are to be regarded as their descendants through continued reproduction.”
The ‘ Philosophy of Creation’ has been treated in a masterly manner by the Rev. Baden Powell, in his ‘ Essays on the Unity of Worlds,’ 1855. Nothing can be more striking than the manner in which he shows that the introduction of new species is “ a regular, not a casual phenomenon,” or, as Sir John Herschel expresses it, not “ a natural in contra-distinction to a miraculous process.”
The third volume of the ‘ Journal of the Linnean Society ’ contains papers, read July 1st, 1858, by Mr. Wallace and myself, in which, as stated in the introductory remarks to this volume, the theory of 'Natural Selection is promulgated by Mr. Wallace with admirable force and clearness.
In June, 1859, Professor Huxley gave a lecture before the Royal Institution on the ‘ Persistent Types of Animal Life.’ Referring to such cases, he remarks, “ It is difficult to comprehend the meaning of such facts as these, if we suppose that each species of animal and plant, or each great type of organisation, was formed and placed upon
I may add, that of the thirty authors named in this Historical Sketch, who believe in the modification of species, or at least disbelieve in separate acts of creation, twenty-five have written on special branches of natural history. of these only three are simple geologists, nine are botanists, and thirteen zoologists; but several of the botanists and zoologists have written on palaaontology or on geology.
the surface of the globe at long intervals by a distinct act of creative power; and it is well to recollect that such an assumption is as unsupported by tradition or revelation as it is opposed to the general analogy of nature. If, on the other hand, we view ‘ Persistent Types’ in relation to that hypothesis which supposes the species living at any time to be the result of the gradual modification of pre-existing species—a hypothesis which, though unproven, and sadly damaged by some of its supporters, is yet the only one to which physiology lends any countenance; their existence would seem to show that the amount of modification which living beings have undergone during geological time is but very small in relation to the whole series of changes which they have suffered.”
In December, 1859, Dr. Hooker published his ‘ Introduction to the Australian Flora.’ In the first part of this great work he admits the truth of the descent and modification of species, and supports this doctrine by many original observations.
The first edition of this work was published on November 24th, 1859, and the second edition on January 7th, 1860.
ABERRANT groups, 365.
Barriers, importance of, 301.
Batrachians on islands, 336.
Bats, how structure acquired, 167.
—— distribution of, 338.
Bear, catching water-insects, 169.
Bee, sting of, 185.
-— queen, killing rivals, 185.
Bees fertilising flowers, 73.
—- hive, not sucking the red clover,
-— hive, cell-making instinct, 202.
-— variation in habits, 193.
-—- bumble, cells of, 203.
—- parasitic, 198.
Beetles, Wingless, in Madeira, 132.
———With deficient tarsi, 132.
Bentham, ML, on British plants, 53.
~on classification, 357.
Berkeley, Mr., on seeds in salt-water, 309.
Bermuda, birds of, 335.
Birds acquiring fear, 193.
annually cross the Atlantic, 314.
— colour of, on continents, 130.
_- footsteps and remains of,in secondary