Wikipedia:Did you know/Darwin Day 2009

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Darwin Day, February 12, 2009, marks the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth. This page is an attempt to collect history of biology- and evolution-themed Main Page content, with History of evolutionary thought as the Featured Article, following the model of the Halloween 2008 and December 25 Main Page programs. Articles meeting the Did you know? requirements should be created in the five days before February 12, 2009, along with suggested hooks at T:TDYK, and it should be noted that they are intended to be used on Darwin Day.

Articles can be created ahead of time on user space pages, and added to the "Ready to go" section below, to be moved into article space when the time to list them at T:TDYK comes.

Possible DYK articles[edit]

These articles either don't exist or could be expanded 5-fold to meet the DYK requirement.




List of portraits in progress[edit]

Any help compiling and documenting a list of Portraits of Charles Darwin would be appreciated.

Ready to go[edit]

If you wish to create articles for Darwin Day ahead of time before moving them to mainspace, please list them here. These ones are ready to be deployed when the time comes:

  1. Vitamin C and the Common Cold (book) - listed at DYK
  2. Darwin Centennial Celebration (1959) - listed at DYK
  3. Non-Darwinian Evolution - listed at DYK
  4. Sickle Cell Anemia, a Molecular Disease - listed at DYK
  5. One gene-one enzyme hypothesis - listed at DYK
  6. T4 rII system - listed at DYK
  7. Plinian Society - listed at DYK
  8. William A. F. Browne - listed at DYK
  9. The Structure and Distribution of Coral Reefs - listed at DYK
  10. The Dell (Thurrock) - listed at DYK
  11. Portraits of Charles Darwin - listed at DYK
  12. Fertilisation of Orchids - listed at DYK
  13. Derby Philosophical Society - listed at DYK
  14. Saxifraga - listed at DYK and being held, may need hook adjustment
  15. William Erasmus Darwin - listed at DYK
  16. John Brodie-Innes - listed at DYK

Featured article[edit]

A silhouette of human evolution

The history of evolutionary thought has roots in antiquity. However, until the 18th century, Western biological thinking was dominated by essentialism, the belief that every species has essential characteristics that are fixed and unalterable. During the Enlightenment, naturalists began to focus on the variability of species; the emergence of paleontology with the concept of extinction further undermined the static view of nature. In the early 19th century, Jean-Baptiste Lamarck proposed his theory of the transmutation of species, the first fully-formed scientific theory of evolution. In 1858, Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace published a new evolutionary theory, which was explained in detail in Darwin's On the Origin of Species. The theory was based on the idea of natural selection. The synthesis of natural selection with Mendelian genetics during the 1920s and 1930s founded the new discipline of population genetics. The gene-centered view of evolution rose to prominence in the 1960s, followed by the neutral theory of molecular evolution, sparking debates over adaptationism, the units of selection, and the relative importance of genetic drift versus natural selection. In the late 20th century, DNA sequencing led to molecular phylogenetics and the reorganization of the tree of life into the three-domain system. (more...)

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Featured picture[edit]

Picture of the day
Charles Darwin in 1879

A portrait of naturalist Charles Darwin in his old age, from the Victorian photography studio Elliott & Fry. By his final years Darwin's fame had spread far and wide, as had his image—always with his iconic beard—in the form of carte de visite and cabinet card photographs. This portrait is from a photography session at Darwin's home, Down House, in 1879. It is one of the most widely distributed images of Darwin: it was issued by Elliott & Fry on heavy card stock around 1880 and subsequently reproduced on postcards, cigarette cards, commemorative stamps, and other memorabilia.

Photo credit: Elliott & Fry
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