[2] Short History Of Evolution

[2 Short History - A Short History of Evolution Objectives Evolution before Darwin Darwins evolutionary theory Modern Synthesis and the present

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A Short History of Evolution
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Objectives Evolution before Darwin Darwin’s evolutionary theory Modern Synthesis and the present
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Evolution before Darwin Evolutionary biology essentially began in 1859 with the publication of “On the Origin of Species” by Charles Darwin Previous to this time… Anaximander in Ancient Greece (6 th Century B.C.) believed that species were formed from water, and that humans and other animals descended from fish. Empedocles (5 th century B.C.) proposed that heads, limbs and other organs were joined at random and only some combinations were fit for survival Plato’s initial concept of fixed essences further elaborated by Aristotle: static world in which God had created species in their present form
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Evolution before Darwin cont. Aristotle Gradation from inanimate to barely animate through plants and invertebrates up to “higher” forms in a Great Chain of Being or Scala Naturae Christianity expanded on this: God’s creation must follow a plan Permanent and unchanging since change would imply imperfection in the original creation This was the prevailing belief in Darwin’s time Carolus Linnaeus (1707-1778) established the framework for modern classification in Systema Naturae in the hope of discovering the pattern of God’s creation
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Jean Baptiste Lamarck (1744-1829) Philosophie Zoologique (1809) Species change over time into new species How this modification occurred differed considerably from Darwin’s ideas Inheritance of acquired characteristics eg “ use and disuse E.g. giraffe’s neck
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Evolution Before Darwin Erasmus Darwin – Darwin’s grandfather also proposed that species are modified descendants of earlier forms Georges Cuvier (1769-1832)- father of comparative anatomy, paleontology, and a proponent of catastrophism : the widely held belief that the Earth’s features had been primarily modeled by great catastrophes that resulted from forces that no longer operate today
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In Europe, Catastrophism arose a consequence of trying to reconcile geological history with the age of the Earth according to the Bible. In 1654, Archbishop James Ussher declared the Earth was about 5650 years old and was, created in 4004 BC. Lightfoot, another biblical scholar later declared
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This note was uploaded on 12/23/2010 for the course BIOL 359 taught by Professor Johnnathwitt during the Winter '09 term at Waterloo.

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[2 Short History - A Short History of Evolution Objectives Evolution before Darwin Darwins evolutionary theory Modern Synthesis and the present

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