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Materials for Natural Selection Chap 4 Variation under Nature
NS I Chap 4-1 Draft title for "Descent", "Origin", & "Variation" as a single work—Darwin's contemplated 'Big Species Book'
Folio Extent: 1 sheet

Editorial symbols

On the
Geological Antiquity
of man

And on the Descent «origin»1 of Species
by Variation

Physical Characteristics: wove paper
Textual Features: page crossed in pencil
  • 1. From CD's interlined substitution of 'origin' for 'Descent', we may plausibly reconstruct the further development of the titles of Darwin's three evolutionary theory books. This substituion created the title 'On the origin of Species by Variation'. Thereby releasing 'Descent', which CD eventually substituted for 'Geological Antiquity' to form the 'Descent of Man'. Also, 'Variation' was to be hived off as 'Variation under Domestication' and the 'origin' became 'On the Origin of Species by means of Natural Selection'. Perhaps it is not surprising that the CUL archivists made certain to preserve this slip of paper as the first item of the Origin Portfolios.
Reproduced by permission of the Syndics of Cambridge University Library and William Huxley Darwin
Higher resolution images available from Cambridge Digital Library
Transcription and apparatus © American Museum of Natural History