CONTENTS.

INTRODUCTION

CHAPTER I.

VARIATION UNDER DOMESTICATION.

Causes of Variability -- Effects of Habit and the use or disuse of Parts -- Correlated Variation -- Inheritance -- Character of Domestic Varieties -- Difficulty of distinguishing between Varieties and Species -- Origin of Domestic Varieties from one or more Species -- Domestic Pigeons, their Differences and Origin -- Principles of Selection, anciently followed, their Effects -- Methodical and Unconscious Selection -- Unknown Origin of our Domestic Productions -- Circumstances favourable to Man's power of Selection.

CHAPTER II.

VARIATION UNDER NATURE.

Variability -- Individual Differences -- Doubtful species -- Wide ranging, much diffused, and common species, vary most -- Species of the larger genera in each country vary more frequently than the species of the smaller genera -- Many of the species of the larger genera resemble varieties in being very closely, but unequally, related to each other, and in having restricted ranges.

CHAPTER III.

STRUGGLE FOR EXISTENCE.

Its bearing on natural selection -- The term used in a wide sense -- Geometrical ratio of increase -- Rapid increase of naturalised animals and plants -- Nature of the checks to increase -- Competition universal -- Effects of climate -- Protection from the number of individuals -- Complex relations of all animals and plants throughout nature -- Struggle for life most severe between individuals and varieties of the same species; often severe between species of the same genus -- The relation of organism to organism the most important of all relations.

CHAPTER IV.

NATURAL SELECTION; OR THE SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST.

Natural Selection -- its power compared with man's selection -- its power on characters of trifling importance -- its power at all ages and on both sexes -- Sexual Selection -- On the generality of intercrosses between individuals of the same species -- Circumstances favourable and unfavourable to the results of Natural Selection, namely, intercrossing, isolation, number of individuals -- Slow action -- Extinction caused by Natural Selection -- Divergence of Character, related to the diversity of inhabitants of any small area and to naturalisation -- Action of Natural Selection, through Divergence of Character and Extinction, on the descendants from a common parent -- Explains the Grouping of all organic beings -- Advance in organisation -- Low forms preserved -- Convergence of character -- Indefinite multiplication of species -- Summary.

CHAPTER V.

LAWS OF VARIATION.

Effects of changed conditions -- Use and disuse, combined with natural selection; organs of flight and of vision -- Acclimatisation -- Correlated variation -- Compensation and economy of growth -- False correlations -- Multiple, rudimentary, and lowly organised structures variable -- Parts developed in an unusual manner are highly variable; specific characters more variable than generic; secondary sexual characters variable -- Species of the same genus vary in an analogous manner -- Reversions to long-lost characters -- Summary.

CHAPTER VI.

DIFFICULTIES OF THE THEORY.

Difficulties of the theory of descent with modification -- Absence or rarity of transitional varieties -- Transitions in habits of life -- Diversified habits in the same species -- Species with habits widely different from those of their allies -- Organs of extreme perfection -- Modes of transition -- Cases of difficulty -- Natura non facit saltum -- Organs of small importance -- Organs not in all cases absolutely perfect -- The law of Unity of Type and of the Conditions of Existence embraced by the theory of Natural Selection.

CHAPTER VII.

MISCELLANEOUS OBJECTIONS TO THE THEORY OF NATURAL SELECTION.

Longevity -- Modifications not necessarily simultaneous -- Modifications apparently of no direct service -- Progressive development -- Characters of small functional importance, the most constant -- Supposed incompetence of natural selection to account for the incipient stages of useful structures -- Causes which interfere with the acquisition through natural selection of useful structures -- Gradations of structure with changed functions -- Widely different organs in members of the same class, developed from one and the same source -- Reasons for disbelieving in great and abrupt modifications.

CHAPTER VIII.

INSTINCT.

Instincts comparable with habits, but different in their origin -- Instincts graduated -- Aphides and ants -- Instincts variable -- Domestic instincts, their origin -- Natural instincts of the cuckoo, molothrus, ostrich, and parasitic bees -- Slave-making ants -- Hive-bee, its cell- making instinct -- Changes of instinct and structure not necessarily simultaneous -- Difficulties on the theory of the Natural Selection of instincts -- Neuter or sterile insects -- Summary.

The Origin of Species by means of Natural Selection Page 09

Charles Darwin

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Charles Darwin

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