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date: 26 July 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Sir Charles Lyell (1797–1875), a friend of Charles Darwin, was a Scottish geologist who was so notable that to this day, in his honor, a crater on the moon and a type of armored fish both bear Lyell’s name. Lyell examined the premise that the earth is governed by the same principles regardless of era and that geological evolution can be broken down into tiny changes over long spans of time—a notion that also appears in Darwin’s evolutionary theory. This selection examines revolutions in climate over the eons, using evidence from, among other phenomena, mammoths preserved in ice.

From Charles Lyell, “On Extinct Quadrupeds,” Principles of Geology. London: J. Murray, 1830–1833, pp. 74–82.

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