Natural Theology: "The Wisdom of God, Manifested in His
Platonic 'Ideal' forms exist in Mind of Deity:
'Real' world created by God (Genesis 1:1)
Study of nature a pious activity
William Paley (1743 - 1805) "Natural Theology" (1802)
Argument from Design & Watchmaker Analogy
Counterargument: David Hume (1711 - 1776)
"Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion" (1779)
Scala Naturae: the "Great Chain of Being"
Creation an infinitely graduated, progressive series
Time scale short (ca. 6,000 years)
Species static: no new forms, no change, no extinction
Taxonomy (Carl von Linne [Carolus Linnæus]
"Systema Naturae" (1735)
10th ed.: January 1st, 1758 "Birthday of Taxonomy"
4,162 animals described in five Categories (KCOGS)
Phylum & Family added later: KPCOFGS
binomial nomenclature: genus + species names
"Ad majorem Dei gloriam": for greater glory of God
System is fixed: just needs to be filled in
(1743 - 1820)
Voyage of HMS Niger to Newfoundland & Labrador (1766)
Voyage of HMS Endeavour to South Seas with Captain Cook (1768 - 1771)
Alexander Humboldt (1769 - 1859)
Voyage of Pizzaro (1799 - 1804) to Latin America
"Personal Narrative" great influence on young Charles Darwin
discovered that don't fit Scala
Extinctions evident: Scala imperfect
Variation is real in Space: what about over Time?
Biology in early
Change has occurred: how to explain it?
The Enlightenment favors rational explanation.
Jean Baptiste de Lamarck
New features arise due to persistent "besoin" (need / want)
(teleological: "Final Cause," goal-directed explanation)
Use & disuse alter morphology:
Altered morphology passed on to offspring
(Lamarckism: inheritance of acquired characteristics)
Ex.: Giraffes stretch their necks to feed on leaves.
Successive generations gradually acquire longer necks.
[or, trees become taller to escape giraffes ?]
Therefore, organisms change (evolve) over time
Uniformitarianism replaces Catastrophism
James Hutton (1726 - 1797) observed geological discontinuities
"No vestige of a beginning, no prospect of an end."
Charles Lyell (1797-1875): "Principles of Geology" (1830)
Frontispiece: The Temple of Serapis
Observable, gradual processes + enormous time = world geology