Never Miss a word!
Kids need Science
Kids Need Science is devoted to demystifying and explaining science, technology, engineering and math words, names, and concepts. Check back often for a science, technology, engineering or math word defined and explained every day.
featured-on-pbsparents-button
.
MAP OF VISITORS WORLDWIDE
Tip Jar. This blog is completely self-funded and is 100% original content. Consider a small donation to help buy dictionaries and images to use on this site. Thanks!
On 24 November 1859 Charles Darwin published his monumental work On The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, changing the face of biology.  Although he only used the word once at the very end of the book, the word evolve (and evolution) is synonymous with Darwin.  The word evolve had been used in a scientific sense specifically in biology for over a hundred years before Darwin wrote Origin of Species-which is one reason why he avoided it.  By the mid 1850s, the word had connotations of perfectibility-something Darwin wanted to avoid.  It was the last sentence of his book:
There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.
The word evolution arrived in English in 1620 and comes from the Latin word evolutionem  (nomnative form evolutio) meaning the unrolling of a book or revealing that which was rolled up.  The word evolve arrived a bit later in the 1640s from the Latin wordevolvere meaning to unroll and  could also pertain to other ‘hidden’ things (see also for example the etymology of vulva), but mostly meant books, when a ‘volume’ was a rolled up manuscript made from vellum.   The modern meaning that scientists such ad Darwin meant for it began around 1832 and reached its first full expression in Darwin’s work.
Image of the first edition cover in the public domain.

On 24 November 1859 Charles Darwin published his monumental work On The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, changing the face of biology. Although he only used the word once at the very end of the book, the word evolve (and evolution) is synonymous with Darwin. The word evolve had been used in a scientific sense specifically in biology for over a hundred years before Darwin wrote Origin of Species-which is one reason why he avoided it. By the mid 1850s, the word had connotations of perfectibility-something Darwin wanted to avoid. It was the last sentence of his book:

There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.

The word evolution arrived in English in 1620 and comes from the Latin word evolutionem (nomnative form evolutio) meaning the unrolling of a book or revealing that which was rolled up. The word evolve arrived a bit later in the 1640s from the Latin wordevolvere meaning to unroll and could also pertain to other ‘hidden’ things (see also for example the etymology of vulva), but mostly meant books, when a ‘volume’ was a rolled up manuscript made from vellum. The modern meaning that scientists such ad Darwin meant for it began around 1832 and reached its first full expression in Darwin’s work.

Image of the first edition cover in the public domain.

  1. celineandthewoods reblogged this from mfkopp
  2. massarrah reblogged this from charlielefaux
  3. charlielefaux reblogged this from theactofhistory
  4. theactofhistory reblogged this from bremertonrarebks
  5. lmburke reblogged this from mfkopp
  6. bremertonrarebks reblogged this from mfkopp
  7. mfkopp reblogged this from mfkopp
  8. only1emeraldranger reblogged this from my-sex-stories
  9. dirks-blog reblogged this from thedemon-hauntedworld
  10. cure-your-delusions reblogged this from detoxyourmind
  11. leomessisgal reblogged this from thetumblratheist
  12. monalisamarie reblogged this from romanticdaydreams
  13. romanticdaydreams reblogged this from thetumblratheist
  14. ffour5andsix reblogged this from ed-black
  15. grandiosedepravity reblogged this from kalilaelahi
  16. kalilaelahi reblogged this from ed-black
  17. the-common reblogged this from ed-black
  18. ed-black reblogged this from righteouskill
  19. kikis89 reblogged this from thephuckery
  20. busofselenaas reblogged this from curious-courtney
  21. curious-courtney reblogged this from project-argus
  22. searchingforthereal reblogged this from endedtime
  23. endedtime reblogged this from thedemon-hauntedworld