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yet who employs these faculties and that influence for the mere purpose of introducing ridicule into a grave scientific discussionI unhesitatingly affirm my preference for the ape. But the battle was not won right there on the spot as is often reported. In fact both sides claimed victory so it could not have been a totally one-sided affair. A Matter of Chance Beyond its religious implications many scientists and non-scientists alike could not bring themselves to accept Darwins theory because it seemed to lack direction or purpose. Not only did it eliminate mans special position in the natural order of things it made his very existence a function of chance. In late 1859 Darwin wrote to Lyell I have heard by round about channel that Herschel says my Book is the law of higgledy- piggledy. This shows a limited understanding of what Darwin said and how we understand evolution today. While it is true evolution is undirected and the source of variation is random the mechanism of natural selection is anything but. It may be relentless and blindbut it is not without purpose It favors variations that increase reproductive success. It acts to increase fitness. Although Darwin did not ignore his critics he didnt put too much stock in them either. In 1859 he wrote to John Lubbock I should be grateful for any criticism. I care not for Reviews but for the opinion of men like you Hooker Huxley Lyell c. There were problems with his theory he knew but none he thought insoluble. One problem however did concern him. It was pointed out by Fleeming Jenkin in an 1867 review. Jenkin was an engineer. He listed a number of objections to Darwins theory age of the Earth limits on variability etc. but the most problematical was Jenkins assertion that any favorable characteristic that emerged in any one individual would quickly be drowned out a result of breeding with the larger population. Novelty could not be sustained. There was no good answer to this problem at the time though we now know that characteristics are not blended but inherited in a more digital fashion through genes and therefore beneficial variations can be and are preserved. Nevertheless it was a serious problem at the time and one of the few that gave Darwin pause. Evolution of the Origin The Origin went through six editions during Darwins life and he made many small changes but in detail onlynone to the basic theory. One small change he later regretted. In the closing paragraph of the first edition Darwin wrote 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. Darwin added by the Creator in the second edition 1860. In 1863 he wrote to Hooker I have long regretted that I truckled to public opinion used Pentateuchal term of creation by which I really meant appeared by some wholly unknown process. It is mere rubbish thinking at present of origin of life one might as well think of origin of matter. 36