The Reception of the Origin of Species

The Reception of the Origin of Species

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The Reception of the Origin of Species by Thomas Henry Huxley

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The Reception of the Origin of Species

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Book Excerpt

Darwinian question; between the estimation in which Darwin's views are now held in the scientific world; between the acquiescence, or at least quiescence, of the theologians of the self-respecting order at the present day and the outburst of antagonism on all sides in 1858-9, when the new theory respecting the origin of species first became known to the older generation to which I belong, is so startling that, except for documentary evidence, I should be sometimes inclined to think my memories dreams. I have a great respect for the younger generation myself (they can write our lives, and ravel out all our follies, if they choose to take the trouble, by and by), and I should be glad to be assured that the feeling is reciprocal; but I am afraid that the story of our dealings with Darwin may prove a great hindrance to that veneration for our wisdom which I should like them to display. We have not even the excuse that, thirty years ago, Mr. Darwin was an obscure novice, who had no claims on our attention. On t

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