March 2017 Auction Ends Thursday, March 30th, 5pm Pacific
Charles Darwin handwritten draft for his book ''Fertilisation of Orchids'', published in 1862 after his groundbreaking ''On the Origin of Species''. In ''Orchids'', Darwin set out to prove by testable means the hypotheses he laid out in ''Origin of Species'', showing how orchids and insects co-evolved in complex interdependent relationships. The book is considered the first practical application of evolutionary theory as well as the seminal book on co-evolution. Most of the content from the page appears in Chapter IX of the book, with the middle section perhaps never making it into printed form. Darwin writes at the top ''192'', ostensibly the page number, as well as ''Ch Vi'' before writing, ''[It is in perfect accordance with the scheme of nature, as worked out by natural selection, that matter excreted to free the] system from superfluous or injurious substances, should be utilized for purposes of the highest importance. To give an example in strong contrast with flowers & honey, the larvae of certain beetles (Cassidae &c) use their own excrement to make an umbrella-like protection for their tender bodies...It may be remembered that in the first chapter evidence was given proving the nectar is never found in several species of Orchis within the spur-like nectary, but that between the two membranes there is an abundant supply of fluid...'' The manuscript page has several words and phrases crossed out, giving a glimpse into Darwin's initial thoughts and editing process. Single page, composed in ink, has folds and creasing. Overall in very good plus to near fine condition.
Charles Darwin Handwritten Draft Page From His Book ''Fertilisation of Orchids'' -- His First Book After ''Origin of Species'', Where He Proved Evolutionary Theory & Co-Evolution
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