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OriginOfSpecies - 475 Rows
Column Type #Values Column Stats
id int(11) 475 Column Stats
subject varchar(80) 14 Column Stats
title varchar(250) 139 Column Stats
ordinal int(11) 30 Column Stats
description text 474 Column Stats

475 rows, page 79 of 119 (4/p)
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Export to Excel select * from OriginOfSpecies order by subject, title, ordinal limit 312, 4 (Page 79: Row)
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06 - Difficutiles in Theory 06-11 - Organs of Small Importance 60 We are profoundly ignorant of the cause of each slight variation or individual difference; and we are immediately made conscious of this by reflecting on the differences between the breeds of our domesticated animals in different countries,- more especially in the less civilised countries where there has been but little methodical selection.

Animals kept by savages in different countries often have to struggle for their own subsistence, and are exposed to a certain extent to natural selection, and individuals with slightly different constitutions would succeed best under different climates.

With cattle susceptibility to the attacks of flies is correlated with colour, as is the liability to be poisoned by certain plants; so that even colour would be thus subjected to the action of natural selection.
cattle
cattle

fly
fly



Some observers are convinced that a damp climate affects the growth of the hair, and that with the hair the horns are correlated.

Mountain breeds always differ from lowland breeds; and a mountainous country would probably affect the hind limbs from exercising them more, and possibly even the form of the pelvis; and then by the law of homologous variation, the front limbs and the head would probably be affected.

The shape, also, of the pelvis might affect by pressure the shape of certain parts of the young in the womb.

The laborious breathing necessary in high regions tends, as we have good reason to believe, to increase the size of the chest; and again correlation would come into play.

The effects of lessened exercise together with abundant food on the whole organisation is probably still more important; and this, as H. von Nathusius has lately shown in his excellent treatise, is apparently one chief cause of the great modification which the breeds of swine have undergone.
pig
pig


But we are far too ignorant to speculate on the relative importance of the several known and unknown causes of variation; and I have made these remarks only to show that, if we are unable to account for the characteristic differences of our several domestic breeds, which nevertheless are generally admitted to have arisen through ordinary generation from one or a few parent-stocks, we ought not to lay too much stress on our ignorance of the precise cause of the
slight analogous differences between true species.
06 - Difficutiles in Theory 06-12 - Organs not in all Cases Absolutely Perfect 10 The foregoing remarks lead me to say a few words on the protest lately made by some naturalists, against the utilitarian doctrine that every detail of structure has been produced for the good of its possessor.

They believe that many structures have been created for the sake of beauty, to delight man or the Creator (but this latter point is beyond the scope of scientific discussion), or for the sake of mere variety, a view already discussed.

Such doctrines, if true, would be absolutely fatal to my theory.

I fully admit that many structures are now of no direct use to their possessors, and may never have been of any use to their progenitors; but this does not prove that they were formed solely for beauty or variety.

No doubt the definite action of changed conditions, and the various causes of modifications, lately specified, have all produced an effect, probably a great effect, independently of any advantage thus gained.
06 - Difficutiles in Theory 06-12 - Organs not in all Cases Absolutely Perfect 20 But a still more important consideration is that the chief part of the organisation of every living creature is due to inheritance; and consequently, though each being assuredly is well fitted for its place in nature, many structures have now no very close and direct relation to present habits of life.

Thus, we can hardly believe that the webbed feet of the upland goose or of the frigate-bird are of special use to these birds; we cannot believe that the similar bones in the arm of the monkey, in the fore-leg of the horse, in the wing of the bat, and in the flipper of the seal, are of special use to these animals. We may safely attribute these structures to inheritance.
goose
goose

Frigate Bird
Frigate Bird

monkey
monkey

horse
horse

bat
bat

seal
seal


But webbed feet no doubt were as useful to the progenitor of the upland goose and of the frigate-bird, as they now are to the most aquatic of living birds.
06 - Difficutiles in Theory 06-12 - Organs not in all Cases Absolutely Perfect 30 So we may believe that the progenitor of the seal did not possess a flipper, but a foot with five toes fitted for walking or grasping; but we may further venture to believe that the several bones in the limbs of the monkey, horse, and bat, were originally developed, on the principle of utility, probably through the reduction of more numerous bones in the fin of some ancient fish-like progenitor of the whole class.
seal
seal

monkey
monkey

horse
horse

bat
bat


It is scarcely possible to decide how much allowance ought to be made for such causes of change, as the definite action of external conditions, so-called spontaneous variations, and the complex laws of growth; but with these important exceptions, we may conclude that the structure of every living creature either now is, or was formerly, of some direct or indirect use to its possessor.