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Titel: The descent of man, and selection in ...
Verlag: London, John Murray, 1871
2 vols, 8vo (190 x 125 mm), pp viii, 423 ; 16 [Murray's advertisements, dated January 1871]; viii [ii] 475  16 [Murray's advertisements, dated January 1871], with numerous wood-engraved illustrations in the text; a very good copy in original cloth, a bit rubbed, in a morocco-backed slipcase. £7500First edition, first issue. The word 'evolution' appears here for the first time in any of Darwin's works, on page 2 of the first volume, 'that is to say before its appearance in the sixth edition of the Origin of species in the following year' (Freeman p 129). 'In the Origin Darwin had avoided discussing the place occupied by Homo sapiens in the scheme of natural selection, stating only that "light will be thrown on the origin of man and his history". Twelve years later he made good his promise with The descent of man, in which he compared man's physical and psychological characteristics to similar traits in apes and other animals, showing how even man's mind and moral sense could have developed through evolutionary processes. In discussing man's ancestry Darwin did not claim that man was directly descended from apes as we know them today, but stated simply that the extinct ancestors of Homo sapiens would have to be classified among the primates; however, this statement, as misinterpreted by the popular press, caused a furore second only to that raised by the Origin' (Norman).There are several important differences between the first and second issues; the most serious is the subject of a one-page inserted 'Postscript' at the beginning of Vol II where Darwin confesses he has fallen into 'a serious and unfortunate error' on pages 297-9 in the first volume and pages 161 and 237 in the second volume concerning sexual selection. This leaf does not appear in the second issue, as the offending passage, and several others detailed in the extensive errata, were corrected in the later printing. 2500 copies of the first issue were published on February 24, and 2000 copies of the second issue in March.Freeman 937; Garrison and Morton 170; Norman 599. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 3569
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