The Voyage of the Beagle

By Charles Darwin,

Book cover of The Voyage of the Beagle

Book description

With an Introduction by David Amigoni.

Charles Darwin's travels around the world as an independent naturalist on HMS Beagle between 1831 and 1836 impressed upon him a sense of the natural world's beauty and sublimity which language could barely capture. Words, he said, were inadequate to convey to those who…

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Why read it?

4 authors picked The Voyage of the Beagle as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Darwin was chosen to accompany Captain FitzRoy on this voyage of exploration and science. Though Galápagos only represented five weeks of a five-year journey, it is the most significant chapter.

His journal takes us around the world as Darwin describes the natural history of the tropics and their relationship to the earth. He realised that isolated forms on archipelagos distil the process of natural selection. He was fascinated by the reptiles, especially the unique marine iguanas. Later the study of collected bird species brought him closer to his ideas on evolution.

Having lived on the islands, I am impressed by…

From David's list on the Galápagos Islands.

The circumnavigation of the world by HMS Beagle (1831-36), with the young Darwin travelling as a companion to Captain Robert Fitzroy, was more consequential in the advancement of human knowledge than any of the voyages of Columbus, Magellan, or Cook. We sailed south into the Roaring Forties with Darwin’s highly readable narrative always at hand; more than half of it is set in Patagonia. It was thrilling to contemplate at Puerto Deseado the unchanged landscape that had brought to Darwin’s mind two lines from Shelley: “The wilderness has a mysterious tongue/Which teaches awful doubt.” And, as we left harbour, to…

From Nicholas' list on sailing in Patagonia.

In 1831 at the age of 22 and freshly minted by his university education, Darwin was offered the chance of a lifetime: to accompany Captain Robert Fitzroy on HMS Beagle for a circumnavigation of the globe. He was in the right place, at the right time, and knew the right people – and although he was only 3rd choice for that position, fate would insist on his being chosen. His experiences on that voyage laid the foundations for his theory of evolution by means of Natural Selection some 28 years later. We are so familiar with the image of Darwin…

From David's list on stretching your imagination.

In December of 1831, a 22-year-old Charles Darwin set sail aboard HMS Beagle out of Plymouth, England, on a five-year voyage around the world. Upon returning, he published his notes—hence this book—and after 19 years of ruminating on his observations he birthed his earth-shaking masterpiece, On The Origin of Species. It is that fact—knowing the end of the story before even Darwin—that makes this book more than just another chronicle of a momentous expedition. It is a privileged peek at a nascent genius on his journey toward rewriting the very history of natural history.

From William's list on nature by naturalists.

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