Missing link in man’s evolution
In 1805, Jean-Baptiste Lamarck and Gottfried Treviranus coined the word “biology”. Lamarck is known for being the first person to suggest that humans might have arisen from apes, which he mentioned in 1809. Charles Darwin, the most famous evolutionist, had a different view. Instead of suggesting that humans developed from apes he supported the view of Thomas Henry Huxley that humans and apes have a common ancestry, each arising into an own line of evolution. In 1831, when he boarded HMS Beagle for the south Atlantic, Darwin was a trainee pastor and a firm believer in the biblical account of the Creation. He sailed with the Beagle for five years as geologist and after visits to the Galapagos Islands west of Ecuador he developed his theory of natural selection in 1838, sharing his observation with only close friends while continuing his research. In the mid-1840s Alfred Russel Wallace had readings of two crucial works: Charles Lyell’s Principles of Geology and Robert Chambers’s Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation, early popular examinations of biological evolution.