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Seite 32 - As all the living forms of life are the lineal descendants of those which lived long before the Cambrian epoch, we may feel certain that the ordinary succession by generation has never once been broken, and that no cataclysm has desolated the whole world.
Seite 12 - I believe that animals have descended from at most only four or five progenitors, and plants from an equal or lesser number. " Analogy would lead me one step further, namely, to the belief that all animals and plants have descended from some one prototype.
Seite 138 - A few naturalists, endowed with much flexibility of mind, and who have already begun to doubt the immutability of species, may be influenced by this volume; but I look with confidence to the future, to young and rising naturalists, who will be able to view both sides of the question with impartiality.
Seite 55 - But though we have always a propensity to generalize from unvarying experience, we are not always warranted in doing so. Before we can be at liberty to conclude that something is universally true because we have never known an instance to the contrary, we must have reason to believe that if there were in nature any instances to the contrary, we should have known of them.
Seite 25 - ... chemical and physical qualities of the surrounding medium. But if, in the present state of science, the alternative is offered us, either germs can stand a greater heat than has been supposed, or the molecules of dead matter, for no valid or intelligible reason that is assigned, are able to rearrange themselves into living bodies, exactly such as can be demonstrated to be frequently produced in another way, I cannot understand how choice can be, even for a moment, doubtful.
Seite 31 - Carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen are all lifeless bodies. Of these, carbon and oxygen unite in certain proportions and under certain conditions, to give rise to carbonic acid ; hydrogen and oxygen produce water ; nitrogen and hydrogen give rise to ammonia. These new compounds, like the elementary bodies of which they are composed, are lifeless. But when they are brought together, under certain conditions they give rise to the still more complex body, protoplasm, and this protoplasm exhibits...