Charles-Robert Darwin (1809 – 1882) was and is a renowned English naturalist, famous for being the father of the theory of evolution by natural selection.
This theory is studied and widely accepted today, leading Darwin’s studies to be studied in a large number of countries. Perhaps one of the best examples to follow in the world of science, with great scientists like Newton, Hawking or Einstein.
Famous quotes from Charles Darwin
We’ve all heard of this scientist before, but how many of us have read his own words in person? Below you can enjoy the 70 best quotes and thoughts from Charles Darwin, With which you will surely learn a lot about him.
1. I am not able to blindly follow the example of other men.
We must always think for ourselves, we must not blindly follow anyone.
2. It is always advisable to clearly perceive our ignorance.
Knowing that you are ignorant is the first step towards personal wisdom.
3. Great is the power of constant deformation.
Unfortunately, today’s society is an inexhaustible source of misrepresentation, as Darwin rightly tells us in this quote.
4. Beauty is the result of sexual selection.
Sexual selection is largely a direct cause of the physical beauty of a species.
5. Social instinct guides animals to enjoy society with their peers.
Humans, like other animals, enjoy the company of our fellow human beings.
6. If I had to relive my life, I would have made it a rule to read poetry and listen to music at least once a week.
Reading poetry and listening to good music can help us find our inner peace.
7. Music awakens in us various emotions, but not the most terrible ones, but rather sweet thoughts of tenderness and love.
As we all know music tames beasts, Darwin was aware of this fact.
8. Intelligence is based on how efficiently species start doing the things they need to survive.
All species develop our intelligence about how nature tests us.
9. Man tends to grow faster than his means of subsistence.
Human beings are always in search of new exploitable resources, we are a consumerist species by nature.
10. We stopped looking for monsters under the bed when we realized they were inside us.
The biggest monsters that human beings face are within themselves.
11. A moral being is one who is able to reflect on his past actions and motives, to approve of some and to disapprove of others.
Humans are the only animal that can judge their own actions once they have been left in the past.
12. Killing a mistake is as good a service, and sometimes even better, than establishing a new truth or a new fact.
We must not persevere in our mistakes, we must learn from them so as not to repeat them.
13. It is hard to believe in the scary but calm war that lurks just below the serene frontage of nature.
Nature may seem calm, but if we know how to look deeply, we can see that it is an ever-changing battle.
14. To the animals, of which we have made our slaves, we do not like to consider them as our equals.
The human being is considered to be superior to any other animal, when in fact he is no longer a link in the evolutionary chain.
15. Mathematics seems to give new meaning.
Mathematics allows humans to develop new forms of scientific and technological innovation.
16. In addition to love and sympathy, animals exhibit other qualities related to social instincts that we would call moral in us.
We need to be more human and value animals in a much more honest way with our own ideals.
17. There is certainly no progress.
All progress is given by an original doubt.
18. At some point in the not-so-distant future, measured in centuries, the civilized races of man will almost certainly be exterminated, and they will be replaced by the savage races of the whole world.
Human beings are unfortunately doomed to their own self-destruction.
19. I have become a kind of fact-finding and drawing machine.
Darwin was familiar with the scientific method and spent long periods of time observing the natural environment.
20. We have not obtained any scientific explanation for the common opinion that each of the species was created independently.
The famous theory of this scientist collided and still collides head-on with the theory of creation.
21. I gradually stopped believing that Christianity was a divine revelation. What many false religions have spread like wildfire across much of the Earth has had some influence on me.
As a scientist, Darwin clearly questioned the Christian religion itself, as his way of thinking clashed with that religion.
22. In the struggle for survival, the strongest win at the expense of their rivals because they manage to adapt better to their environment.
Knowing how to adapt more effectively to problems will undoubtedly lead us to their best solution.
23. With savagery, weaknesses in body and mind are quickly eliminated.
The human being is the only animal that has developed a truly advanced society, banishing it from savagery.
24. The surgeon is capable of injuring himself during the operation because he knows that he is doing good to his patient.
Medicine is one of the greatest strengths possessed by human beings, of which we have no doubt.
25. The shield is as important to defeat as the sword and the spear.
Good defense can be the best attack.
26. Sexual selection is less rigorous than natural selection.
Living things tend to reproduce to a large extent because we are designed for this task.
27. I die slowly because I have no one to talk to about insects.
Darwin felt a great misunderstanding in the society he lived in, this quote gives us faith.
28. I love insects.
Darwin’s love for insects will last forever in his studies.
29. How easily we hide our ignorance after the phrase “the plan of creation”.
Much of religion was created to make logical sense of those things that human beings did not understand.
30. It is quite clear that organic beings must be exposed for several generations to new conditions of life in order to bring about appreciable variation.
Living beings adapt and evolve, in particular because of the adversities to which they are exposed.
31. Insects, like me, are misunderstood by most.
Insects are perhaps the great misunderstandings of creation.
32. Finally, I fell asleep on the pasture and was able to wake up with the birds singing above my head.
This scientist was certainly a great lover of nature.
33. Man chooses for his own good, nature does it for the common good.
Natural selection takes great care of all of its members, nature itself needs all of them to function properly.
34. In the future, I see more areas open for further research.
Undoubtedly, this famous naturalist would greatly appreciate the latest technological advances in the field of research.
35. In the history of mankind, those who learn to cooperate are those who have prevailed.
Acting in a group allows us to be more efficient and to be able to obtain a much more satisfactory result.
36. These are the most weak of a society that tend to propagate their species.
The weaker members of a society “in quotes” can also be the most valuable connection.
37. It’s a demonic curse for any man to be absorbed in any business like I have been.
All the great geniuses, including Darwin, were severely absorbed by his discoveries.
38. My mistake was a good lesson that taught me to never trust it as an exclusionary principle in science.
All great discoveries are the result of some sort of mistake.
39. I have no doubt that, on the whole, my works have been repeatedly overrated.
In this quote we can see the great humility that this scientist has shown throughout his life.
40. I firmly believe that without speculation there is no good and original observation.
In order to get to the bottom of a case, we must first explore all the secrets it hides from us.
41. The mystery of the principle of all things is insoluble to us; and for my part I must be content to remain agnostic.
Darwin, as he aptly tells us in this quote, was a staunch agnostic.
42. Favorable individual variations and differences, and the destruction of harmful ones, is what we have called “natural selection” or “survival of the fittest”.
The specimens which adapt best to their natural environment are those which predominate.
43. A man of science should have neither desire nor affection, but a simple heart of stone.
In order to accomplish a purely scientific task, we have to put our emotions aside.
44. The man descends from a quadruped with a hairy tail, probably a tree in his habits.
Today we know that all mammals come from a common ancestor, an ancestral animal similar to the rat.
45. In conclusion, it seems that nothing could be better for a young naturalist than a trip to distant lands.
To discover new species, naturalists are forced to make long journeys, often to the other side of civilization.
46. There is no fundamental difference between man and animals, in their capacity to feel pleasure and pain, happiness and misery.
All animals, just like humans, feel, suffer and suffer.
47. I like stupid experiments. I still do them.
From the most stupid experiments, they can draw the most relevant conclusions.
48. I asked for this principle, by which any slight variation, so useful, is preserved, by the term natural selection.
Natural selection allows us to evolve as living beings, highlighting the qualities that are most beneficial to us.
49. The highest possible stage of moral culture is when we recognize that we need to control our thoughts.
The power to control one’s thoughts is a power that most animals do not have.
50. Love for all living creatures is the noblest attribute of man.
As rational animals, we have to deal with animals that do not have our same quality.
51. If the misery of the poor is not caused by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.
The human being is the biggest predator that he himself suffers from, we usually hurt ourselves.
52. The very essence of instinct is that it is followed independently of reason.
Our instincts are able to give us a solution to a problem much faster and more efficiently than our reason.
53. Ignorance often breeds confidence more often than knowledge: it is those who know little, and not those who know a lot, who claim that this or that problem will never be solved by science.
Ignorance is an evil that has always hurt human beings, for those who suffer from it are unable to realize that they are carriers.
54. It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one who adapts best to change.
In this quote we see how Darwin puts a twist on the famous belief that the fittest or the smartest survives, is simply the fittest.
55. I tried to read Shakespeare too late, so much so that it made me nauseous.
Admittedly, this famous scientist was not a great admirer of William Shakespeare.
56. Free will is to the mind what chance is in matter.
Free will and chance have certain features in common.
57. You cannot rely on your eyes when your imagination is fuzzy.
If we are not focused, we will not be able to understand what our own eyes are seeing.
58. A man’s friendships are one of the best measures of his worth.
Tell me who you’re going with and I’ll tell you who you are, our friendships often define us.
59. A man who dares to waste an hour of time has not discovered the value of life.
We must never waste time, it is the most precious asset human beings have.
60. Natural selection, as we shall see later, is a force always ready for action and as infinitely superior to the feeble efforts of man as the works of nature are to those of art.
The human being is not immune to natural selection, he also suffers from the designs of this famous law of nature.
61. When it was first said that the sun stood still and the world rotated, common sense of mankind declared the doctrine false; but the old adage “vox populi, vox Dei”, as any philosopher knows, cannot be entrusted to science.
We need to think for ourselves and not get carried away by what most people think.
62. An American monkey, an Ateles, who had gotten drunk on cognac, could never again be forced to experience it again, in which he acted more sensibly than many men.
Animals learn faster from their mistakes than humans, we are obsessed with our mistakes.
63. History repeats itself. This is one of the mistakes of history.
Human beings need to learn from history, not to repeat the same mistakes over and over again.
64. It is so obvious that both good and bad qualities are hereditary.
Indeed, the best and worst qualities of our ancestors will shape us as individuals.
65. The animals that we have made our slaves do not like to be seen as our equals.
Human beings have the absurd belief that they are some kind of “superior being” to the rest of the animal world, when in fact they are not.
66. The mystery of the beginning of all things seems insoluble to us.
How the universe was shaped is a doubt that still besets us today.
67. In fact, I doubt that compassion is a natural or innate quality.
Compassion is a quality that humans take a long time to understand and appreciate.
68. The tropical climate makes me feel good; it makes me want to live quietly for a while.
The tropical climate is very benign for many people, the heat and the good weather affect us all positively.
69. Although the dovecote, which is wild in a slightly altered state, has managed in some places to return to this pristine state.
Some domesticated animals have the ability to return to their wild state in a short time.
70. There is no fundamental difference between man and the higher animals in their mental faculties.
Human beings just have a different adaptation to the environment around them, but at the end of the day we are one more kind of ape.