The Autobiography of Charles Darwin by Charles Darwin

The Autobiography of Charles Darwin

From The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin

subjects: Autobiography

Description

The Autobiography of Charles Darwin is a work on the life of Charles Darwin, written by the man himself. This biographical work about one of the most important naturalists in history is key in understanding the events in his life which lead him to make some of the most important evolutionary discoveries, which hold up in importance during our time. The Autobiography of Charles Darwin is highly recommended for those who are interested in learning more about the life of Charles Darwin and for those interested in understanding the personal story that have lead to the modern theory of evolution.

Excerpt

A German Editor having written to me for an account of the development of my mind and character with some sketch of my autobiography, I have thought that the attempt would amuse me, and might possibly interest my children or their children. I know that it would have interested me greatly to have read even so short and dull a sketch of the mind of my grandfather, written by himself, and what he thought and did, and how he worked. I have attempted to write the following account of myself, as if I were a dead man in another world looking back at my own life. Nor have I found this difficult, for life is nearly over with me. I have taken no pains about my style of writing.

I was born at Shrewsbury on February 12th, 1809, and my earliest recollection goes back only to when I was a few months over four years old, when we went to near Abergele for sea–bathing, and I recollect some events and places there with some little distinctness.

My mother died in July 1817, when I was a little over eight years old, and it is odd that I can remember hardly anything about her except her death–bed, her black velvet gown, and her curiously constructed work–table. In the spring of this same year I was sent to a day–school in Shrewsbury, where I stayed a year. I have been told that I was much slower in learning than my younger sister Catherine, and I believe that I was in many ways a naughty boy.