Charles Robert Darwin
1809 - 1882 aged 73 - interred at Westminster Abbey
Married to Emma Wedgewood
Darwin established that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestors, and in a joint publication with Alfred Russel Wallace introduced his scientific theory that this branching pattern of evolution resulted from a process that he called natural selection.
Darwin's early interest in nature led him to neglect his medical education; instead, he helped to investigate marine invertebrates. Studies at the University of Cambridge encouraged his passion for natural science. His five-year voyage on HMS Beagle established him as an eminent geologist whose observations and theories supported Charles Lyell's uniformitarian ideas.
'The Voyage of the Beagle'
'On the Origin of the Species'
'The Descent of Man'
Charles Darwin: Victorian Mythmaker by A N Wilson : A lucid, elegantly written and thought-provoking social and intellectual history' - Evening Standard