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Tlo Question considered in the Liglit of Facts, and in that of
Pant II.-Do Specics wear out, and, if not, why ant !- Implicntion
of the Darwinian Thicory that Spccics aro unlimited in Exist
Darwinism, and the Lalter reinstated.--Character of the New
nato Variations; thcso not a Product of, but a Rcaponso to,
TUE ORIGIN OR SI'YCIEA DY MEANS OF NATURAL
(AMINIOAN JOURNAL or BCIKNOL AND Ants, Nurol 1800.)
This book is already exciting much attention. Two American cditions aro announced, through which it will becomo familiar to many of our readers, beforo tlioso pages aro ispucd. An abstract of the argument - for “tho wholo volumo is ono long argument," as ' tho anthor #tates—is unnecchmary in such a caso; and it would lo dillicult to kivo loy dotnche extracts. l'ur thu volumu itroll in all alomernet, n prodroms of a detailed work upon which tho author has been labor. ing for twenty years, and which will take two or thrco moro ycars to completc." It is cxcccdingly compact ; and although useful summarics are appended to tho Hoveral chapters, and a gencral recapitulation con.
1"On tho Origin of Apoclon liy Meann of Natural Relection, or tho Prosorvation of lavorod. Racca In tho Blrugklo for life," by Charlco Darwin, M. A., Fellow of tho Royal, Goological, Linnwan, ctc., Sociсtics, Author of " Journal of Rescarchou during II. N. 8. Beagle's Voyage round the World." London: Julin Murray. 1859, 602 pp., posløvo.
tuins tlio cssonco of the wholo, yot much of tho aroma cscapes in tho troblo distillation, or is so concontratod that the flavor is lost to the general or ovon to the scientific reader. The volumo itself-tho proof-spirit -is just condensed enough for its purposo. It will bo far more widely read, and perlinps will mako dccper impression, than tho elaborato work might have done, with all its full details of the facts upon which the author's sirccping conclusions havo been grounded. At least it is a more readable book : but all the facts that can bo mustcrcıl in favor of tho thicory aro still likely to loc nccleil.
Who, upon a single perusal, shall pass judgment upon a work like this, to which twenty of the best years of the life of a most able naturalist have been devoted ? And who among thoso naturalists who hold a position that cntilles them to pronounce #111 marily upon the subject, can be expected to divost himself for the noncc of thio influenco of received and favorite systems? In fact, tho controversy now openca is not likely to lo settled in an off-hand way, nor is it desiralilo that it should be. A wpirilcil conllict among opinions of every gindo mist ensuit', which to borrow an illustration from tlio doctrine of the look beforo us--may be likence to the conflict in Naturo among races in the struggle for lifo, which Mr. Dar. win describes; through which the vicw's most favored by facts will be developed and tested by "Vatural Selection,” the weaker oncs lo destroyed in tho puro. cess, and the strongest in the long-run alono survivo.
The duty of reviewing this volunu in the Ameri. can Journal of Science would naturally devolvo upon
tho principal oditor, wlioso wido observation and profound knowledgo of various departinents of natural history, as well ns of gcology, particularly qualify hiin for tlio task. But lio has been obliged to lay asido his pen, and to scck in distant lands tho entire reposo from scientific labor sọ essentinl to the restoration of dois liealth-consummation devoutly to be wished, and confidently to be cxpected. Interested as Dsr. Dana would be in this volume, he could not be cxpected to accept its doctrinc. Views 80 idealistic as thoso upon which his “Thoughts upon Spccics", aro grounded, will not harmonizo readily with a doctrino 60 thoroughly naturalistic as that of Mr. Darwin. Though it is just possible that one who'rcgards tho kinds of clementary matter, such as oxygen and ly. drogen, and the definito compounds of theso clelentary matters, and their coinpounds again, in tho mineral kingilom, as constituting specics, in tho samo senso, fundamentally, ns that of animal and vegetablo Aprecies, miglit admit an evolution of one species from another in the latter as well as the former casc.
between the doctrines of this volume and thoso of thio odlier great natiurnlist whose naino adorns the titlopage of this journal (Mr. Agn:siz), the widest divcr. yenco appears. It is interesting to contrast the two, and, indecil, is necessary to our purposo; for this contrast lirings out most prominently, and scts in strongest light and slnilo, the main features of the thicory of the origination of species by means of Natural Selection.
Tho ordinnry and generally-reccived vicw assumes the independent, spccilic crention of cach kind of plant
" Artlele in this Journal, vol. xxlv., p. 308.