Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Victorian Scientific NaturalismCommunity, Identity, Continuity$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Bernard Lightman and Gowan Dawson

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780226109503

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226109640.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 28 November 2021

“The Great O. versus the Jermyn St. Pet”: Huxley, Falconer, and Owen on Paleontological Method

“The Great O. versus the Jermyn St. Pet”: Huxley, Falconer, and Owen on Paleontological Method

Chapter:
(p.27) 1 “The Great O. versus the Jermyn St. Pet”: Huxley, Falconer, and Owen on Paleontological Method
Source:
Victorian Scientific Naturalism
Author(s):

Gowan Dawson

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226109640.003.0002

This chapter examines the paleontological dispute from 1856 to 1857 between Thomas Henry Huxley, Hugh Falconer, and Richard Owen, and its role in forging a sense of solidarity and community amongst the nascent scientific naturalists. In this dispute Huxley criticized Georges Cuvier's method of paleontological reconstruction—it relied on the law of necessary correlation, to Huxley a quasi-theological doctrine. Joseph Hooker, Charles Darwin, and Herbert Spencer (as well as, seemingly, Charles Lyell) backed Huxley, and even Falconer eventually changed his mind and vehemently endorsed his erstwhile antagonist. The Cuvierian controversy begun by Huxley brought together the leading lights of the emergent scientific young guard more than three years before the publication of On the Origin of Species, providing them with a key secular principle, as well as a mutual bête noire in Owen, that would both be important later during the debates over Darwin's naturalistic mode of species transmutation.

Keywords:   Paleontology, Thomas Henry Huxley, Hugh Falconer, Richard Owen, Georges Cuvier, Charles Darwin, Joseph Hooker, Military Metaphor, Crimean War, Correlation

Chicago Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.