How Charles Darwin's Life Experiences Affected His Theory

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Naturally Curious � PAGE �1�

Naturally Curious


It is fascinating to think about how and where our species came to be. Hundreds of questions arise from that one subject as we compare ourselves to other life forms. Charles Darwin took those thoughts a step further. He observed many species throughout his entire life at all ages and stages of development. He is famous for his theory of evolution through natural selection, and although he had many theories and studies, natural selection took the attention. To look at his life and his theory of evolution, to see where the dots connect is an interesting journey.

Charles Robert Darwin was born February 12, 1809 in the British Empire. He seemed to have a good life with good surroundings. His father was a doctor as was his grandfather, who was also a philosopher and poet. He had four sisters, one brother, however he lost his mother at the age of eight (Sis, 2003).

From day one, Charles' father already had plans for his two sons. They were going to have a good education and become gentlemen. They would learn Greek and Latin and his father also said, "They should be able to read Homer and Virgil" (Sis, 2003). He wanted his sons to become doctors, so at the mere age of nine, Charles was sent to boarding school with is brother Erasmus. Charles did not like the school to which he was sent; he wanted to be outdoors, riding, shooting, fishing, taking long walks, and collecting things (Gruber, 1974). He and his brother would run home whenever the chance came available, and do chemistry experiments in the tool shed (Sis, 2003).

After Charles turned sixteen, his father sent him to yet another boarding school that he had no interest in attending. He...