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On the Nature of Limbs – A Discourse - Chicago Scholarship Online
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On the Nature of Limbs: A Discourse

Richard Owen and Ronald Amundson


The most prominent naturalist in Britain before Charles Darwin, the author of this book made empirical discoveries and offered theoretical innovations that were crucial to the proof of evolution. Among his many lasting contributions to science was the first clear definition of the term homology: “the same organ in different animals under every variety of form and function.” The author also graphically demonstrated that all vertebrate species were built on the same skeletal plan and devised the vertebrate archetype as a representation of the simplest common form of all vertebrates. Just as Darw ... More

Keywords: evolution, homology, vertebrate species, skeletal plan, vertebrate archetype, vertebrates, Charles Darwin, adaptation, organic form, evolutionary developmental biology

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2008 Print ISBN-13: 9780226641942
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226641959.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Richard Owen, author

Ronald Amundson, editor