Studies Scientific & Social, 1. köide

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Page 285 - There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator 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.
Page 367 - Nothing is easier than to admit in words the truth of the universal struggle for life, or more difficult— at least I have found it so— than constantly to bear this conclusion in mind. Yet unless it be thoroughly engrained in the mind, the whole economy of nature, with every fact on distribution, rarity, abundance, extinction, and variation, will be dimly seen or quite misunderstood.
Page 8 - We conceive that, during the process of upheaval of the Sierra, or, possibly, at some time after that had taken place, there was at the Yosemite a subsidence of a limited area, marked by lines of ' fault' or fissures crossing each other somewhat nearly at right angles. In other and more simple language, the bottom of the Valley sank down to an unknown depth, owing to its support being withdrawn from underneath during some of those convulsive movements which must have attended the upheaval of so extensive...
Page 338 - In my opinion, the greatest error which I have committed has been not allowing sufficient weight to the direct action of the environments, ie, food, climate, &c., independently of natural selection . . . When I wrote the 'Origin,' and for some years afterwards, I could find little good evidence of the direct action of the environment; now there is a large body of evidence, and your case of the Saturnia is one of the most remarkable of which I have heard.
Page 10 - ... vertical displacement for the small area implicated which makes this a peculiar case; but it would not be easy to give any good reason why such an exceptional result should not be brought about, amid the complicated play of forces which the elevation of a great mountain chain must set in motion. By the adoption of the subsidence theory for the formation of the Yosemite, we are able to get over one difficulty which appears insurmountable with any other. This is, the very small amount of debris...
Page 12 - To descend into some of these valleys, it is necessary to go round twenty miles; and into others, the surveyors have only lately penetrated, and the colonists have not yet been able to drive in their cattle. But the most remarkable feature in their structure is, that although several miles wide at their heads, they generally contract towards their mouths to such a degree as to become impassable.
Page 346 - At last gleams of light have come, and I am almost convinced (quite contrary to the opinion I started with) that species are not (it is like confessing a murder) immutable.
Page 7 - The principal features of the Yosemite, and those by which it is distinguished from all other known valleys, are : first, the near approach to verticality of its walls ; second, their great height, not only absolutely, but as compared with the width of the Valley itself; and, finally, the very small amount of talus or debris at the base of these gigantic cliffs.
Page 345 - What cannot nature effect with such means at her disposal? She can do all except either create matter or destroy it. These two extremes of power the Deity has reserved for Himself only; creation and destruction are the attributes of His omnipotence. To alter and undo, to develop and renew — these are powers which He has handed over to the charge of nature.
Page 293 - By JA Allen. (Bulletin of the Mntevm of Comparafire Zoology at Harvard College, Cambridge, Mass., vol. ii. No. 3.) in proportions ; in the length of the head, feet, wings, and tail ; in the length of particular feathers, thus altering the shape of the wing or tail ; in the length of the tarsi and of the separate toes ; and in the length, width, thickness, and curvature of the bill. These variations are by no means small in amount or requiring very accurate measurements for their detection, since...

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