BookBrowse Reviews Darwin's Armada by Iain McCalman

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Darwin's Armada

Four Voyages and the Battle for the Theory of Evolution

by Iain McCalman

Darwin's Armada
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  • First Published:
    Aug 2009, 432 pages
    Paperback:
    Nov 2010, 432 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Kim Kovacs

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Four Voyages and the Battle for the Theory of Evolution

The Miriam Webster dictionary defines an armada as "A fleet of warships." In Iain McCalman's Darwin's Armada, the term refers to the three scientists who were early supporters of Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection, and who paved the way for its acceptance by Great Britain's scientific community: Joseph Hooker, botanist (1817-1911), Thomas Huxley, biologist (1825-1895) and Alfred Wallace, zoologist (1823-1913). The book is, in essence, the story of how the theory of evolution by natural selection came to be (how evolution evolved, if you will), and the vital role played by these men in its development.

The first half of Darwin's Armada provides brief biographical sketches of Darwin, Hooker, Huxley and Wallace, and then concentrates on the voyages the men took to other lands and the scientific skills they acquired during these adventures. Darwin was ...

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