Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Reading Darwin: A Favorite Quote

Charles Darwin was born 200 years ago on the same day and in the same year as Abraham Lincoln.

In honor of Darwin's birthday and the 150th anniversary of the publication of On the Origin of Species, we present (thanks to the NY Times) a favorite quote from the book itself.

Needless to say, most people have never read a single page of this book. But some smart people have and one of them is Neil Shubin, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Chicago.

The Times asked Shubin, author of Your Inner Fish, to pick a favorite quote from the book. Shubin selected this provocative sentence:
What can be more curious than that the hand of a man, formed for grasping, that of a mole for digging, the leg of a horse, the paddle of a porpoise, and the wing of a bat should all be constructed on the same pattern and should include the same bones in the same relative positions.


Daniel the Mad Scientist said...

I like this line:

"Great is the power of steady misrepresentation; but the history of science shows that fortunately this power does not long endure."

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