1. Education
In early January 1831, a research ship dispatched by the British Admiralty had just left England, to which it wouldn't return for nearly five years. Aboard was an unusual "gentleman passenger," a 22-year-old with a Cambridge education and a keen interest in geology.

Charles Darwin had left England aboard H.M.S. Beagle on December 27, 1831. During his years circling the globe he would visit South America, the Galapagos Islands, Tahiti, New Zealand, Australia, and the southern tip of Africa. His observations, carefully recorded in notebooks and journals, would influence his thinking and writing, which in turn would influence all of science.

Image: Charles Darwin/Library of Congress


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