Background of Evolutionary Thought

  • James Hutton

    Proposed that slow-acting geological forces shaped the planet and it is millions of years old.
  • Period: to


  • Thomas Malthus

    Predicted that left unchecked, the human population will grow beyond the space and food needed to sustain it.
  • Jean-Baptiste Lamarck

    Published his hypotheses of the inheritance of acquired traits.
  • Charles Darwin

    Set sail on teh HMS Beagle.
  • Charles Lyell

    Explained that over long periods, the same processes affecting Earth today have shaped Earth's ancient geological features.
  • Alfred Russel Wallace

    Wrote to Darwin, speculating on evolution by natural selection, based on his studies of the distribution of plants and animals.
  • Charles Darwin

    Publishes On the Origin of Species.