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  Section: Introduction to Botany » Evolution
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  Early Changes in Thought
  Charles Darwin
  The Tenets of Darwinian Theory
  Other Theories of Evolution
  The First Organisms
  Prokaryotic Life
  Eukaryotic Life
  The Emergence of Seed Plants
  Human Life
  Life over Time

For most of historical time, the dominant view was that all creatures, plant and animal, were the product of separate, individual creations. Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) believed that both lowly and highly organized organisms arose spontaneously from mud, and later others wrote recipes fort he generation of flies, bees,a nd mice from nonliving precursors. When Aristotle cataloged and gave names to species, he believed he was cataloging creation. Hundreds of years later, Carolus Linnaeus (1707-1778), originator of our modem system of classification, also held the view that every species was the result of individual acts of creation. Only later in his career did Linnaeus begin to consider the possibility of evolutionary change.


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