Charles Robert Darwin and his Revolutionary Ideas

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Charles Robert Darwin was born on February 12, 1809 in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, England. Charles was one of six children and came from a long line of scientists. His grandfather, Dr. Erasmus Darwin, created the theory of evolution and his father, Dr. Robert Waring Darwin, was a well known medical doctor in his community. When Charles was 16, in 1825, his father sent him to Edinburgh University to study medicine, in hopes that Charles would also become a medical doctor. However, three years into his studies Charles left Edinburgh University for Christ’s College because he could not tolerate the blood during surgery. It is important to note that anesthesia was not used during this time. In 1831, six years after beginning his studies, Charles graduated from Christ’s College with a Bachelors of Arts in Botany. In 1839, at the age of 30, Charles married his cousin Emma Wedgwood. They had ten children together. Most of their children were healthy; however one of their children, Annie, died of typhoid at a young age, and another Charles Waring Darwin, was born mentally handicapped most likely due to the age of Charles and Emma. At the time of their son’s birth, Charles was 47 years old and Emma was 48 years old. Unfortunately, Charles Waring Darwin died a few years later from scarlet fever. Darwin’s health slowly declined before he died in 1882, at the age of 73. For several years, Charles suffered from angina pectoris which can be described as painful chest spasms brought on by underlying coronary heart disease. These chest spasms are caused by a range of physical activity and stress-induced emotional states (www.britannica.com). In March of 1882, Charles had a seizure and then on April 19, 1882, he died of a heart attack in Downe, ... ... middle of paper ... ...s respected by many, but known by few in his lifetime. His theory has had broad influence on many faucets of education and fields of study. Charles Darwin was most well-known for his Theory on Natural Selection; however he produced numerous important works during his lifetime. Charles was a rich socialite, scientist, and family man. Charles Robert Darwin will never be forgotten and will continue to be taught in educational institutions for years to come. References Buss, D.M. (2009). The great struggles of life: Darwin and the emergence of evolutionary psychology. American Psychologist, 64, 140 – 148. Charles Darwin. (n.d.). In Encyclopedia Britannica online. Retrieved from http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/151902/Charles-Darwin van Wyhe, J. (2002). The Complete Works of Charles Darwin Online. Retrieved from http://darwin-online.org.uk/biography.html
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