Charles Darwin? History Textbook? Anonymous?
In the struggle for survival, the fittest win out at the expense of their rivals because they succeed in adapting themselves best to their environment.
The article cited “On the Origin of Species” by Darwin, but I examined several editions of that landmark treatise and have been unable to find the quotation. Would you please trace this expression?
Quote Investigator: QI has found no substantive evidence that Charles Darwin made the above statement.
The scholars working on the authoritative “Darwin Correspondence Project” based at Cambridge University have placed the statement into a set of “Six things Darwin never said”. 1 The members of the project have constructed an important database of 7,500 letters written or received by Charles Darwin.
The earliest appearance of the statement found by QI was located within a history textbook titled “Civilization Past and Present” by T. Walter Wallbank, Alastair M. Taylor and Nels M. Bailkey.
- Website: Darwin Correspondence Project, Article title: Six things Darwin never said – and one he did, Date of article on website: No date is specified, Internet Archive Wayback Machine date: December 18, 2009, Website description: Website includes basic descriptions of more than 15,000 letters known to have been written by or to Charles Darwin, and the complete texts of around half of those. (Accessed darwinproject.ac.uk on December 18, 2014) link ↩