RECORD: Anon. 1871. [Review of] Descent of man. The Evening Star (Washington D.C.) (28 March), p.1.

REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed by Christine Chua and edited by John van Wyhe 1.2020. RN1

[page] 1

From Blanchard & Mohun we have the following:

The Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex. By Charles Darwin, M. A., F. R. S., &c. In two volumes. New York: D. Appleton & Co.

In 1859, Mr. Darwin startled the World by his book On the Origin of Species, in which he set forth what is now known as the "Darwinian theory," that the explanation of the variety in the forms of animal and vegetable life is to be found in the struggle for existence, and the consequent survival ot the fittest specimens of animal and vegetable life. In this new work on the Descent of Man, Darwin carries out his theory to its logical results, and lays down the bold proposition that "Man is descended from a hairy quadruped, furnished with a tail and pointed ears, probably arboreal in his habits and an inhabitant of the Old World." Mr. Darwin undertakes to trace step by step, and with great fertility of illustration, the evidence in the physical structure of man ot his descent from less highly organized forms. His close study of animal history enables him to bring forward a remarkable array of illustrations designed to show the "intellectual and emotional peculiarities ot the lower animals;" but both the argument and the demonstrations are rather curious than convincing, and though the Darwinian theory, like any other odd, new doctrine, will undoubtedly have a host of zealous advocates, the world is not likely to speedily accept the mortifying belief that proud man supposed to be created in the image of his Maker, descended or ascended from some monkey form of life.

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Citation: John van Wyhe, ed. 2002-. The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online. (

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