The history of biology traces the study of the living world from
ancient to modern times. Although the concept of biology as a single
coherent field arose in the 19th century, the biological sciences
emerged from traditions of medicine and natural history reaching back
to ancient Egyptian medicine and the works of Aristotle and Galen in
the ancient Greco-Roman world, which were then further developed in the
Middle Ages by Muslim physicians and scholars such as Avicenna. During
the European Renaissance and early modern period, biological thought
was revolutionized in Europe by a renewed interest in empiricism and
the discovery of many novel organisms. Prominent in this movement were
Vesalius and Harvey, who used experimentation and careful observation
in physiology, and naturalists such as Linnaeus and Buffon who began to
classify the diversity of life and the fossil record, as well as the
development and behavior of organisms. Over the 18th and 19th
centuries, biological sciences such as botany and zoology became
increasingly professional scientific disciplines. Naturalists began to
reject essentialism and reconsider the importance of extinction and the
mutability of species. Cell theory provided a new perspective on the
fundamental basis of life. These developments, as well as the results
were synthesized in Charles Darwin's theory of evolution by natural
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Today's selected anniversaries:
Roman usurper Nepotianus of the Constantinian dynasty proclaimed
himself Roman Emperor, entering Rome with a group of gladiators.
The Dutch West India Company received a charter for a trade monopoly in
the West Indies by the Dutch Republic.
American writer Ernest Thayer's baseball poem "Casey at the Bat" was
first published in the San Francisco Examiner.
Months after he abdicated the British throne, Edward, Duke of Windsor
married American socialite Wallis Simpson in a private ceremony near
The Buddhist crisis: Soldiers of the Army of the Republic of Vietnam
attacked protesting Buddhists in Huế, South Vietnam, with liquid
chemicals from tear gas grenades, causing 67 people to be hospitalised
for blistering of the skin and respiratory ailments.
The High Court of Australia delivered its decision in the landmark case
Mabo v Queensland, recognising the land rights of the Aborigines.
Wiktionary's word of the day:
Prone to relapse into immoral or antisocial behavior
Wikiquote quote of the day:
When government disappears, it's not as if paradise will take its
place. When governments are gone, other interests will take their