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Voyage of the Beagle

4.02 of 5 stars 4.02  ·  rating details  ·  3,539 ratings  ·  202 reviews
Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution and natural selection has been debated and disparaged over time, but there is no dispute that he is responsible for some of the most remarkable and groundbreaking scientific findings in history. His five-year trip as a naturalist on the H.M.S.Beagletook him on a journey to such exotic locales as Chile, Argentina, and the Galapagos Islan ...more
Paperback, 496 pages
Published April 1st 2004 by National Geographic (first published 1839)
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The Beagle was sent on a surveying mission by the Royal Navy; initially it was intended to last three years but it was extended to five and the ship circumnavigated the globe. The captain, Fitzroy, wanted a companion on the voyage and through a convoluted series of events, ended up with a youthful Darwin along, which so annoyed the official ship's Naturalist who was also the surgeon (as was common), that he resigned and left at the first port of call, part way across the Atlantic. Fortunately an ...more
Per comprendere il valore di questo libro è opportuno dimenticare il Darwin barbuto e severo ritratto sui frontespizi e sulle enciclopedie: quando si imbarcò sul Beagle aveva soltanto ventidue anni. Non era autore di pubblicazioni scientifiche, non era celebre, non aveva idee rivoluzionarie; era un giovane inglese orgoglioso della sua patria e della sua cultura, fervente antischiavista, innamorato della magnificenza del Messiah di Händel (con il trasporto tipico della sua età) e dei libri di Ale ...more
This book is really a rare treasure. Is there anything comparable? Here we have the very man whose ideas have revolutionized completely our understanding of life, writing with charm about the very voyage which sparked and shaped his thinking on the subject. And even if this book wasn’t a window into the mind of one of history’s most influential thinkers, it would still be entertaining on its own merits; indeed, the public at the time thought so, making Darwin into a bestselling author.

I can har
Erik Graff
Feb 22, 2015 Erik Graff rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Erik by: Bill Ellos
Shelves: sciences
Upon matriculating into Loyola University's MA/PhD program in philosophy during the late summer of 1980, I was assigned to Bill Ellos as his teaching assistant. Bill, a deep-cover Jesuit, had come to Chicago from Washington State, having done some work there with educational film as well as being a university professor. His interests were diverse to say the least. His doctoral dissertation form the Pontifical Institute in Rome was on Wittgenstein, but the work he had me doing originally was most ...more
Commanders in the Royal Navy could not socialize with their crew. They ate their meals alone-- then they met with the officers on board ship. This took it's mental toll on the ship's Captain's and so they were allowed a "civil" companion-- someone from outside the Navy who would be under their command but was not part of the crew. Captain Fitz Roy (age 26), a Nobleman and a passionate Naturalist chose Charles Darwin (a wealthy, upper-class Naturalist "enthusiast") to be his companion aboard the ...more
Gilly McGillicuddy
What I wrote in my LJ while I was reading it.

So I've started reading The Voyage of the Beagle. I've only read a chapter or so so far, but it's very enjoyable. I just kind of wish I'd paid more attention to my geology classes in school. It's a lot more relaxed and not nearly as self-conscious and defensive as TOoS was. It's all along the lines of "Hi all! We arrived on Random Island today. The trees are pretty but the people didn't even give us coffee. Can you believe it?! Anyhoo, I found a rock
Darwin was largely a paternalistic meliorist, who apparently genuinely believed that Europeans were improving people's lives through colonialism, missionaries, etc.

This book reveals odd doubts, though. Darwin expresses agnostic puzzlement about oral histories telling of terrible plagues accompanying the arrival of Europeans. He's not sure how to believe it, and yet can't (quite) dismiss it--so he recommends further study (which, I might add, has confirmed the stories of epidemics in spades).

This book obviously shows its age as a work of science writing, but it is a magnificent travelogue. Darwin's voyage, detailed in this account, transformed his beliefs and laid the groundwork for his theories of evolution. His descriptions of the indigenous peoples he encountered, as well as the fellow expatriates and travelers he met, make for an entertaining cast of characters, set against an ever-changing, but continually marvelous background of islands and foreign lands. We meet a wide range ...more
Darwinit lugeda on naljakas, nii tema enda kõnepruugi kui tõlke pärast (mis on kas lihtsalt absurdne, aegunud või asjatundmatu - raske on aru saada, mis just - ma arvan, et kas a) keel on 50ndatest nii palju muutunud, eriti teadussõnavara või b) tõlkija leiutas seda käigu pealt), aga samas meeleolukas (see ju vanade raamatute juurde käibki).

Meeltheitmavõttev lühikeste ent rahulikult hirmsate (st Darwin ja tema kaasaegsed võtavad kõike otseselt ja rahulikult midagi imeks panemata) kirjelduste ja
Katya Epstein
I really enjoyed this book a lot. It was a delight for me to discover that Charles Darwin was a real geek, brimming with an enthusiasm for all things geological or entomological (or zoological) that shines through in spite of the incredibly dry and haughty reading by David Case (I was listening to the audiobook). Darwin went on an unimaginably wild five-year adventure all the way around the world, but he refers only in passing to any of the danger or drama encountered: To him the fossils and geo ...more
Mary Soderstrom
The Best Book I Ever Read on a Holiday

We're going to take a little vacation, and along with getting house-sitters lined up, I've been thinking about what to take to read. Don't know yet, but I keep coming back to the best book I ever read while on a trip.

It's Darwin's The Voyage of the Beagle. Now available as a free pdf, 35 years ago the edition I took along was a quality paperback that still is in one piece despite being consulted many times. It was just the right size to tuck in a backpack or

In the first one hundred pages of the Voyage of the Beagle Charles Darwin is writing a journal about his encounters and discoveries of visiting multiple islands and countries while satisfying his curiosity by exploring everything that would make him wonder. He filled the journal with his questions, observations, experiments, and helpful facts from either him or other people. The book also provided diagrams to help the readers visualize the things he saw. Throughout the book he describes the thin
Darwin traveled aboard the H.M.S. Beagle in the 1830's, stopping at the Galapagos Islands, Tahiti, New Zealand, Australia, and all over South America in the five year journey. This work chronicles the events of the trip itself and reads partly as a traveler's journal and partly as a detailed description of the natural surroundings by a scientist. Stopping at the Galapagos Islands resulted in the formulation of a new theory which changed the face of modern science, but the voyage was apparently f ...more
Frequently exceedingly dry and of no interest except to naturalists, and probably not always them either: Darwin's voyage was so long ago that much of his information and speculation is simply outdated (his talk of 'miasmas' is one instance where later information makes his material of purely historical interest).

If one is reading it for background on evolution and _Origin of Species_, one will be disappointed: there are a handful of lines in the main part of the work which may be taken as prefi
i have waited 47 years* to read this book and finally got to it ... ohmy ohmy ohmy ... highly recommended: it's a travelogue, a naturalist's journal ... it includes geology, cultural observations, ornithology, oceanography, and all manner of things on flora and fauna particular to locations visited ... all from c. darwin's perspective. wow. THE travel journal to lead and to end ALL travel journals, imo.

*in the spring of 1965 for a biology class at lsu, i attended a lecture by an enthusiastic pr
Darwin's ability to observe the natural world during his circumvention of the southern hemisphere on the H.M.S. Beagle is surpassed only by his ability to recollect and synthesize his observations into theories which then seem self-evident. With only an occasional tangent into analysis, he spends the majority of the book ruminating on the geological forces exerting slow but inexorable changes on the plains of Brazil, the mountains of Chile, and the archipelagos of the Pacific, and describing the ...more
Sue Tincher
The Voyage of the Beagle gave me some insight into the 5-year journey Charles Darwin took which gave rise to the theory of evolution. I didn't like the fact that it was mostly a travelogue and catalog of natural history. But the parts where he expresses thoughts that would later be incorporated into evolution were interesting, as when he is wondering at the different species of finches on the different Galapagos Islands, or noting the very unusual fauna of Australia. This edition also has an ess ...more
James podcast. This is a wonderful natural history diary of Charles Darwin's nearly five year tour around the world. He was an incredibly intelligent and insightful man. I read a very short Darwin biography that stated he was "the discoverer of natural selection..." No, he postulated the theory and presented evidence to back up his theory. He was not the only one to see the relationships between time and the differences in earth forms, and the differences in families and species of plants ...more
It was a bit of a bore at times and difficult to understand. But he expressed ideas that he would later shape into his magnum opus, "The Origin of Species". It is good to read this before you read "The Origin of Species" or if you are looking for a travel journal from a naturalist. Darwin has a very good ability to understandably describe what he sees, although some of his remarks might be offensive in this day and age. During his travels he saw places that nowadays are changed beyond recognitio ...more
What I actually read was a Project Gutenberg edition which lacked the illustrations which was a pity.

Enjoyed the book very much especially since I'd just read Lyell's Principles of Geology.

Fascinating account of the countries he travelled in, but for some reason he says nothing about the time they spent in South Africa. Which I had been looking forward to. Is there an edition which does recount that part of the story? Only a few weeks but he must have seen something of interest there.
This is the abridged version by Millicent E. Selsam. Amazing account of Darwin's 5 years at sea. You really get insight into how he was able to put together his theory of evolution. Interesting how he thought through the way coral reefs were formed.Very readable. This version is from the 1950's and probably out of print, but still quite relevant today.
Feisty Harriet
First off, I think you must be kind of a nerd to enjoy this book. Secondly, I am just such a nerd. I have read a number of books about Darwin and his writings, his science, and the 5-year voyage around the world that launched his career. This is not the scientific notebooks from his journey, but instead is a compilation journal of his experiences and some of his discoveries while exploring Cape Verde, Brazil, Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, Chile, the Galapagos, Tahiti, New Zealand, Aust ...more
This not only has great science in it, but reads a bit like an adventure novel in places. Just a fantastic view into the world of the time and to the voyage that changed Darwin's life and gave him so much food for thought in his development of natural selection.
Pablo Flores
This is young Charles Darwin's account of his journey around the world on the Beagle. As such, the book is full of the ideas to be expected of a young, yet inexperienced British subject of the 1830s, albeit an exceptionally brilliant one. Darwin went aboard as an aspiring naturalist with a special interest in geology, but he recorded his impressions on almost everything, from the geological stratification of Argentine Patagonia to the sociological stratification of Chilean society, from his repu ...more
Dit is het verhaal waarin de evolutietheorie geboren is. Het is best spannend om met deze kennis in het achterhoofd te beginnen met lezen. "Wanneer komt hij op de Galapagos-eilanden aan en ziet hij de vinken?!", is waar ik in het begin alleen maar aan kon denken. Wat uiteraard een beetje dom is, aangezien op de eerste paar bladzijden twee landkaarten staan waarop het verloop van de gehele reis te volgen is en precies beschreven staat wanneer de Beagle bij de Galapagos-eilanden aankomt.

David Redden
The Voyage of the Beagle is Charles Darwin's account of his 5-year journey around the world while he was in his 20s. Much of the book focuses on his travels throughout South America, followed of course the Galapagos Islands, Tahiti (loved it!), New Zealand (meh), Australia (not sure what to think of that), and a few pretty islands on his way home.

I loved his descriptions of the scenery, his adventures, and his humorous turns of phrase, such as, "These lizards, when cooked, yield a white meat, w
Jason Mills
May 29, 2013 Jason Mills rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of travel, Darwin, nature, history
As a young man Darwin travelled with the survey ship HMS Beagle for five years (not unlike the mission of the USS Enterprise). His popular memoir relates his land-bound peregrinations (surprisingly little on life at sea), exploring the plants and animals, landforms and people of many countries and islands. Broadly chronological, the text is a miscellany, telling of things in the order Darwin encountered them. It is never exciting, quite long, yet always interesting: I've never added so many book ...more
Prachtig boek, maar dat weet iedereen!
Als 21ste eeuwer is het wel interessant om een aantal culturele geplogenheden en wereldvisies te horen uit de 19de eeuw. Darwin wijdt uit over culturen, over hoe een European in die tijd keek naar "de wilden" (een term die tegenwoordig politiek incorrect is). Over slavernij.
Meest opmerkelijk vond ik dat hij het meest onder de indruk is van Patagonië terwijl hij het lelijk vindt. Ik ben daar ook geweest en voor mij was het de mooiste plek op aarde die ik ooit
I read Darwin's account of his famous voyage on a voyage of my own, which included a week in the Galapagos. I highly recommend that chapter in particular to anyone planning such a trip. I imagine geologists might also be interested in the book as a whole--I had not realized that long before he became famous for theorizing about evolution, Darwin was fascinated by geology. I, on the other hand, am not especially fascinated by geology, so I occasionally found those bits of the book hard going, and ...more
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  • The Journals
  • Bully for Brontosaurus: Reflections in Natural History
  • Principles of Geology
  • Cooper's Creek
  • Travels Into the Interior of Africa
  • The Malay Archipelago
  • Charles Darwin: The Power of Place
  • The Silent World
  • Scott's Last Expedition: The Journals
  • Darwin's Armada: Four Voyages and the Battle for the Theory of Evolution
  • The Royal Road to Romance: Travelers' Tales Classics
  • Darwin: The Life of a Tormented Evolutionist
  • The Home Of The Blizzard: A True Story Of Antarctic Survival
  • The Mountain of My Fear / Deborah : A Wilderness Narrative: Two Mountaineering Classics in One Volume
Charles Robert Darwin was an English naturalist, eminent as a collector and geologist, who proposed and provided scientific evidence that all species of life have evolved over time from common ancestors through the process he called natural selection. The fact that evolution occurs became accepted by the scientific community and the general public in his lifetime, while his theory of natural selec ...more
More about Charles Darwin...
The Origin of Species The Descent of Man The Autobiography of Charles Darwin, 1809–82 On Natural Selection The Expression of Emotion in Man and Animals

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