Charles Darwin, born on February 12, 1809, is famous for his groundbreaking ideas about how living things change over time. He believed that all living beings, including humans, evolved from common ancestors. His main idea, known as evolution, became a fundamental concept in science.
Darwin was born in Shrewsbury, England, into a well-off family. His interest in nature started early, influenced by his grandfather’s writings on evolution. Despite being baptized Anglican, Darwin attended a Unitarian chapel with his family.
After some time studying medicine, Darwin realized it wasn’t his passion. He became more interested in natural history and joined a group of students studying it. He went on a five-year voyage on the ship H.M.S. Beagle, where he observed different species and collected samples.
Darwin’s observations during the voyage led him to develop his theory of natural selection. This theory suggests that species evolve over time through a process where individuals with favorable traits are more likely to survive and reproduce. Another scientist, Alfred Russel Wallace, was also working on similar ideas, leading Darwin to collaborate with him.
In 1859, Darwin published his most famous book, “On The Origin of Species,” where he presented evidence for his theory of evolution. This book revolutionized the way people thought about life on Earth, convincing many scientists that evolution was a fact.
Throughout his life, Darwin continued to study and write about evolution. He investigated not only animals but also plants, publishing several books on the subject. His final book, “The Formation of Vegetable Mould Through the Actions of Worms,” explored the role of earthworms in soil formation.
Darwin’s work laid the foundation for modern biology and changed our understanding of the natural world. He is considered one of the most important figures in scientific history and was honored with burial in Westminster Abbey. Today, we celebrate his contributions to science and our understanding of life on Earth.