Charles Darwin: His famous theory of evolution is most popular & applicable for the survival of fittest.
Charles Darwin and his famous theory of evolution were well known to all of us. He was encouraged to study natural science at the University of Cambridge. He was an eminent geologist and a scholar with well-known theories and a popular author. All of us know about Charles Darwin and his theory of natural selection but many of us do not know the personal facts, unknown, and funny side of his life.
- Darwin tasted uncommon animals & birds
Darwin was curious about nature and interested in the life around him. He had the habit of tasting strange animals which not often found in the list of menus. The list includes hawk, bittern, iguanas, puma and even giant tortoise. His passion for strange food reduced the moment he tried having an old brown owl which he found beyond words.
- Darwin wanted to be a doctor but…
Darwin’s father was a Physician. Darwin joined Edinburgh University to become a physician like his father. He wanted to be a doctor but he realized that he was sick of the sight of blood. He could not stand watching a person bleed. He had to give up his ambition. As an alternative, he thought of studying divinity to be a rural cleric, which might help him to be a naturalist also.
- The problem with Darwin’s nose
Robert FitzRoy the captain of the ship HMS Beagle, who was looking for a naturalist to accompany him on the expedition to South America. FitzRoy had a habit of studying a person by the shape of his nose. Looking at Darwin, at first, he had rejected Darwin because he did not like the shape of Darwin’s nose. But Captain FitzRoy realized during the voyage that the young, well-educated naturalist Mr. Charles Darwin was his best choice.
- Best Birthday Gift Ever: a Mountain!
As a part of their expedition, Captain FitzRoy, Darwin and other crew-member were resting on a small island near Tierra del Fuego archipelago. Suddenly a huge ball of ice rolled down from the glacier into the sea. It caused a huge wave. But Darwin showed courage at the moment of crisis by pulling the boats to the shore right in time. It saved their lives. Appreciating Darwin’s courage Captain FitzRoy named the mountain under his name as a birthday gift.
- On the origin of species
Charles Darwin’s work was published under the name of “On the Origin of Species by means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life”. He published it in the year 1859, twenty years after his series of marathon expeditions. Alfred Wallace who too was working as naturalist came to similar conclusions and Darwin did not want to be left behind. The title of his work was changed to “The Origin of Species” in the sixth edition.
- Survival of the fittest
The popular term Survival of the fittest was linked with Charles Darwin. But it was the philosopher and his friend Herbert Spencer who coined the phrase while extending Darwin’s theory of natural selection into the day-to-day life of the people. In the 5th edition of The Origin of the species, Darwin used the phrase but gave full credit to Spencer.
- Darwin’s marriage: mocking his own theory?
Charles Darwin took a long time before deciding his marriage with his first cousin Emma Wedgwood. He did a careful listing of pro and con results of marriage before confirming it. It was quite funny marriage. It was quite shocking to know that Darwin who gave significant importance to the science of genetics in the natural selection, decided to marry his first cousin.
- How Darwin Lost His Faith in Christianity
Darwin was a religious person. He was known to recite passages of the bible on the expedition, helping the co-workers to keep a peace of mind. But after the death of his 10-year-old daughter Annie, he was a lost person. He said to have lost his faith in the religion. He called himself not an atheist but agnostic.
- Darwin the Backgammon-champion
The long expeditions and untimely journeys had a bad effect on Darwin’s health. He was bed-ridden for a long time. He consulted with 20 doctors but the disease remained mysterious. But his wife Emma made him follow a strict routine and that helped him to recover his health.
Darwin was good at playing the game of Backgammon with Emma every day as a part of daily routine.
- An apology from the Church of England
Darwin’s theory of natural selection was always criticized by the Church of England. The Church found him guilty and made him face trials. But after 126 years, realizing their earlier mistakes, the Church of England apologized to Darwin whole heartedly.