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"Lamarck introduced the conception of the action of an animal on itself as a factor in producing modification."
[Lamarck did nothing of the kind. It was Buffon and Dr. Darwin who introduced this, but more especially Dr. Darwin.]
"But a little consideration showed" (italics mine) "that though Lamarck had seized what, as far as it goes, is a true cause of modification, it is a cause the actual effects of which are wholly inadequate to account for any considerable modification in animals, and which can have no influence whatever in the vegetable world, &c."
I should be very glad to come across some of the "little consideration" which will show this. I have searched for it far and wide, and have never been able to find it.
I think Professor Huxley has been exercising some -of his ineradicable tendency to try to make things clear in the article on Evolution, already so often quoted from. We find him (p- 75°) pooh-poohing Lamarck, yet on the next page he says, " How far ' natural selection' suffices for the production of species remains to be seen." And this when " natural selection" was already so nearly of age! Why, to those who know how to read between a philosopher's lines, the sentence comes to very nearly the same as a declaration that the writer has no great opinion of " natural selection." Professor Huxley continues, "Few can doubt that, if not the whole cause, it is a very important factor in that operation." A philosopher's words should be weighed carefully, and when Professor Huxley says "few can doubt," we must remember that he may be including himself among the few whom he considers to have the power of doubting on this matter. He does not say "few will," but " few can" doubt, as though it were only the enlightened who would have the power of doing so. Certainly "nature,"—for this is what "natural selection " comes to,—is rather an important factor in the operation, but we do not gain much by being told so. If however, Professor Huxley neither believes in the origin of species, through sense of need on the part of animals themselves, nor yet in "natural selection," we should be glad to know what he does believe in.
The battle is one of greater importance than appears at first sight. It is a battle between teleology and non-teleology, between the purposiveness and the non-purposiveness of the organs in animal and vegetable bodies. According to Erasmus, Darwin, Lamarck, and Paley, organs are purposive; according to Mr. Darwin and his followers, they are not purposive. But the main arguments against the system of Dr. Erasmus Darwin are arguments which, so far as they have any weight, tell against evolution generally. Now that these have been disposed of, and the prejudice against evolution has been overcome, it will be seen that there is nothing to be said against the system of Dr. Darwin and Lamarck which does not tell with far greater force against that of Mr. Charles Darwin and Mr. Wallace.
Mr. DAVID BOGUE begs to announce that he has removed the business, which since the decease of Mr. Hardwicke he has carried on at 192, Piccadilly under the style of Hardwicke And Bogue, to more commodious premises at No. 3, St. Martin's Place, Trafalgar Square, W.C.
After this date the business will be continued in the name of Mr. David Bogue only. July 1, 1879.