Lamarck, the Founder of Evolution - His Life and Work
by Alpheus Spring Packard
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"This distinction is very important to make, because the consideration of fossils is, as we have already said, one of the principal means of knowing well the revolutions which have taken place on the surface of our globe. This subject is of great importance, and under this point of view it should lead naturalists to study fossil shells, in order to compare them with their analogues which we can discover in the sea; finally, to carefully seek the places where each species lives, the banks which are formed of them, the different beds which these banks may present, etc., etc., so that we do not believe it out of place to insert here the principal considerations which have already resulted from that which is known in this respect.

"The fossils which are found in the dry parts of the surface of the globe are evident indications of a long sojourn of the sea in the very places where we observe them." Under this heading, after repeating the statement previously made that fossils occur in all parts of the dry land, in the midst of the continents and on high mountains, he inquires by what cause so many marine shells could be found in the explored parts of the world. Discarding the old idea that they are monuments of the deluge, transformed into fossils, he denies that there was such a general catastrophe as a universal deluge, and goes on to say in his assured, but calm and philosophic way:

"On the globe which we inhabit, everything is submitted to continual and inevitable changes, which result from the essential order of things: they take place, in truth, with more or less promptitude or slowness, according to the nature, the condition, or the situation of the objects; nevertheless they are wrought in some time or other.

"To nature, time is nothing, and it never presents a difficulty; she always has it at her disposal, and it is for her a means without limit, with which she has made the greatest as well as the least things.

"The changes to which everything in this world is subjected are changes not only of form and of nature, but they are changes also of bulk, and even of situation.

"All the considerations stated in the preceding chapters should convince us that nothing on the surface of the terrestrial globe is immutable. They teach us that the vast ocean which occupies so great a part of the surface of our globe cannot have its bed constantly fixed in the same place; that the dry or exposed parts of this surface themselves undergo perpetual changes in their condition, and that they are in turn successively invaded and abandoned by the sea.

"There is, indeed, every evidence that these enormous masses of water continually displace themselves, both their bed and their limits.

"In truth these displacements, which are never interrupted, are in general only made with extreme and almost inappreciable slowness, but they are in ceaseless operation, and with such constancy that the ocean bottom, which necessarily loses on one side while it gains on another, has already, without doubt, spread over not only once, but even several times, every point of the surface of the globe.

"If it is thus, if each point of the surface of the terrestrial globe has been in turn dominated by the seas—that is to say, has contributed to form the bed of those immense masses of water which constitute the ocean—it should result (1) that the insensible but uninterrupted transfer of the bed of the ocean over the whole surface of the globe has given place to deposits of the remains of marine animals which we should find in a fossil state; (2) that this translation of the ocean basin should be the reason why the dry portions of the earth are always more elevated than the level of the sea; so that the old ocean bed should become exposed without being elevated above the sea, and without consequently giving rise to the formation of mountains which we observe in so many different regions of the naked parts of our globe."

Thus littoral shells of many genera, such as Pectens, Tellinae, cockle shells, turban shells (sabots), etc., madrepores and other littoral polyps, the bones of marine or of amphibious animals which have lived near the sea, and which occur as fossils, are then unimpeachable monuments of the sojourn of the sea on the points of the dry parts of the globe where we observe their deposits, and besides these occur deep-water forms. "Thus the encrinites, the belemnites, the orthoceratites, the ostracites, the terebratules, etc., all animals which habitually live at the bottom, found for the most part among the fossils deposited on the point of the globe in question, are unimpeachable witnesses which attest that this same place was once part of the bottom or great depths of the sea." He then attempts to prove, and does so satisfactorily, that the shells he refers to are what he calls deep-water (pelagiennes). He proves the truth of his thesis by the following facts:

1. We are already familiar with a marine Gryphaea, and different Terebratulae, also marine shell-fish, which do not, however, live near shore. 2. Also the greatest depth which has been reached with the rake or the dredge is not destitute of molluscs, since we find there a great number which only live at this depth, and without instruments to reach and bring them up we should know nothing of the cones, olives, Mitra, many species of Murex, Strombus, etc. 3. Finally, since the discovery of a living Encrinus, drawn up on a sounding line from a great depth, and where lives the animal or polyp in question, it is not only possible to assure ourselves that at this depth there are other living animals, but on the contrary we are strongly bound to think that other species of the same genus, and probably other animals of different genera, also live at the same depths. All this leads one to admit, with Bruguiere,[78] the existence of deep-water shell-fish and polyps, which, like him, I distinguish from littoral shells and polyps.

"The two sorts of monuments of which I have above spoken, namely, littoral and deep-sea fossils, may be, and often should be, found separated by different beds in the same bank or in the same mountains, since they have been deposited there at very different epochs. But they may often be found mixed together, because the movements of the water, the currents, submarine volcanoes, etc., have overturned the beds, yet some regular deposits in water always tranquil would be left in quite distant beds.... Every dry part of the earth's surface, when the presence or the abundance of marine fossils prove that formerly the sea has remained in that place, has necessarily twice received, for a single incursion of the sea, littoral shells, and once deep-sea shells, in three different deposits—this will not be disputed. But as such an incursion of the sea can only be accomplished by a period of immense duration, it follows that the littoral shells deposited at the first sojourn of the edge of the sea, and constituting the first deposit, have been destroyed—that is to say, have not been preserved to the present time; while the deep-water shells form the second deposit, and there the littoral shells of the third deposit are, in fact, the only ones which now exist, and which constitute the fossils that we see."

He again asserts that these deposits could not be the result of any sudden catastrophe, because of the necessarily long sojourn of the sea to account for the extensive beds of fossil shells, the remains of "infinitely multiplied generations of shelled animals which have lived in this place, and have there successively deposited their debris." He therefore supposes that these remains, "continually heaped up, have formed these shell banks, become fossilized after the lapse of considerable time, and in which it is often possible to distinguish different beds." He then continues his line of anti-catastrophic reasoning, and we must remember that in his time facts in biology and geology were feebly grasped, and scientific reasoning or induction was in its infancy.

"I would again inquire how, in the supposition of a universal catastrophe, there could have been preserved an infinity of delicate shells which the least shock would break, but of which we now find a great number uninjured among other fossils. How also could it happen that bivalve shells, with which calcareous rocks and even those changed into a silicious condition are interlarded, should be all still provided with their two valves, as I have stated, if the animals of these shells had not lived in these places?

"There is no doubt but that the remains of so many molluscs, that so many shells deposited and consequently changed into fossils, and most of which were totally destroyed before their substance became silicified, furnished a great part of the calcareous matter which we observe on the surface and in the upper beds of the earth.

"Nevertheless there is in the sea, for the formation of calcareous matter, a cause which is greater than shelled molluscs, which is consequently still more powerful, and to which must be referred ninety-nine hundredths, and indeed more, of the calcareous matter occurring in nature. This cause, so important to consider, is the existence of coralligenous polyps, which we might therefore call testaceous polyps, because, like the testaceous molluscs, these polyps have the faculty of forming, by a transudation or a continual secretion of their bodies, the stony and calcareous polypidom on which they live.

"In truth these polyps are animals so small that a single one only forms a minute quantity of calcareous matter. But in this case what nature does not obtain in any volume or in quantity from any one individual, she simply receives by the number of animals in question, through the enormous multiplicity of these animals, and their astonishing fecundity—namely, by the wonderful faculty they have of promptly regenerating, of multiplying in a short time their generations successively, and rapidly accumulating; finally, by the total amount of reunion of the products of these numerous little animals.

"Moreover, it is a fact now well known and well established that the coralligenous polyps, namely, this great family of animals with coral stocks, such as the millepores, the madrepores, astraeae, meandrinae, etc., prepare on a great scale at the bottom of the sea, by a continual secretion of their bodies, and as the result of their enormous multiplication and their accumulated generations, the greatest part of the calcareous matter which exists. The numerous coral stocks which these animals produce, and whose bulk and numbers perpetually increase, form in certain places islands of considerable extent, fill up extensive bays, gulfs, and roadsteads; in a word, close harbors, and entirely change the condition of coasts.

"These enormous banks of madrepores and millepores, heaped upon each other, covered and intermingled with serpulae, different kinds of oysters, patellae, barnacles, and other shells fixed by their base, form irregular mountains of an almost limitless extent.

"But when, after the lapse of considerable time, the sea has left the places where these immense deposits are laid down, then the slow but combined alteration that these great masses undergo, left uncovered and exposed to the incessant action of the air, light, and a variable humidity, changes them gradually into fossils and destroys their membranous or gelatinous part, which is the readiest to decompose. This alteration, which the enormous masses of the corals in question continued to undergo, caused their structure to gradually disappear, and their great porosity unceasingly diminished the parts of these stony masses by displacing and again bringing together the molecules composing them, so that, undergoing a new aggregation, these calcareous molecules obtained a number of points of contact, and constituted harder and more compact masses. It finally results that instead of the original masses of madrepores and millepores there occurs only masses of a compact calcareous rock, which modern mineralogists have improperly called primitive limestone, because, seeing in it no traces of shells or corals, they have mistaken these stony masses for deposits of a matter primitively existing in nature."

He then reiterates the view that these deposits of marble and limestones, often forming mountain ranges, could not have been the result of a universal catastrophe, and in a very modern way goes on to specify what the limits of catastrophism are. The only catastrophes which a naturalist can reasonably admit as having taken place are partial or local ones, those dependent on causes acting in isolated places, such as the disturbances which are caused by volcanic eruptions, by earthquakes, by local inundations, by violent storms, etc. These catastrophes are with reason admissible, because we observe their analogues, and because we know that they often happen. He then gives examples of localities along the coast of France, as at Manche, where there are ranges of high hills made up of limestones containing Gryphaeae, ammonites, and other deep-water shells.

In the conclusion of the chapter, after stating that the ocean has repeatedly covered the greater part of the earth, he then claims that "the displacement of the sea, producing a constantly variable inequality in the mass of the terrestrial radii, has necessarily caused the earth's centre of gravity to vary, as also its two poles.[79] Moreover, since it appears that this variation, very irregular as it is, not being subjected to any limits, it is very probable that each point of the surface of the planet we inhabit is really in the case of successively finding itself subjected to different climates." He then exclaims in eloquent, profound, and impassioned language:

"How curious it is to see that such suppositions receive their confirmation from the consideration of the state of the earth's surface and of its external crust, from that of the nature of certain fossils found in abundance in the northern regions of the earth, and whose analogues now live in warm climates; finally, in that of the ancient astronomical observations of the Egyptians.

"Oh, how great is the antiquity of the terrestrial globe, and how small are the ideas of those who attribute to the existence of this globe a duration of six thousand and some hundred years since its origin down to our time!

"The physico-naturalist and the geologist in this respect see things very differently; for if they have given the matter the slightest consideration—the one, the nature of fossils spread in such great numbers in all the exposed parts of the globe, both in elevated situations and at considerable depths in the earth; the other, the number and disposition of the beds, as also the nature and order of the materials which compose the external crust of this globe studied throughout a great part of its thickness and in the mountain masses—have they not had opportunities to convince themselves that the antiquity of this same globe is so great that it is absolutely beyond the power of man to appreciate it in an adequate way!

"Assuredly our chronologies do not extend back very far, and they could only have been made by propping them up by fables. Traditions, both oral and written, become necessarily lost, and it is in the nature of things that this should be so.

"Even if the invention of printing had been more ancient than it is, what would have resulted at the end of ten thousand years? Everything changes, everything becomes modified, everything becomes lost or destroyed. Every living language insensibly changes its idiom; at the end of a thousand years the writings made in any language can only be read with difficulty; after two thousand years none of these writings will be understood. Besides wars, vandalism, the greediness of tyrants and of those who guide religious opinions, who always rely on the ignorance of the human race and are supported by it, how many are the causes, as proved by history and the sciences, of epochs after epochs of revolutions, which have more or less completely destroyed them.

"How many are the causes by which man loses all trace of that which has existed, and cannot believe nor even conceive of the immense antiquity of the earth he inhabits!

"How great will yet seem this antiquity of the terrestrial globe in the eyes of man when he shall form a just idea of the origin of living bodies, as also of the causes of the development and of the gradual process of perfection of the organization of these bodies, and especially when it will be conceived that, time and favorable circumstances having been necessary to give existence to all the living species such as we actually see, he is himself the last result and the actual maximum of this process of perfecting, the limit (terme) of which, if it exists, cannot be known."

In the fourth chapter of the book there is less to interest the reader, since the author mainly devotes it to a reiteration of the ideas of his earlier works on physics and chemistry. He claims that the minerals and rocks composing the earth's crust are all of organic origin, including even granite. The thickness of this crust he thinks, in the absence of positive knowledge, to be from three to four leagues, or from nine to twelve miles.

After describing the mode of formation of minerals, including agates, flint, geodes, etc., he discusses the process of fossilization by molecular changes, silicious particles replacing the vegetable or animal matter, as in the case of fossil wood.

While, then, the products of animals such as corals and molluscs are limestones, those of vegetables are humus and clay; and all of these deposits losing their less fixed principles pass into a silicious condition, and end by being reduced to quartz, which is the earthy element in its purest form. The salts, pyrites, and metals only differ from other minerals by the different circumstances under which they were accumulated, in their different proportions, and in their much greater amount of carbonic or acidific fire.

Regarding granite, which, he says, naturalists very erroneously consider as primitive, he begins by observing that it is only by conjecture that we should designate as primitive any matter whatever. He recognizes the fact that granite forms the highest mountains, which are generally arranged in more or less regular chains. But he strangely assumes that the constituents of granite, i.e., felspar, quartz, and mica, did not exist before vegetables, and that these minerals and their aggregation into granite were the result of slow deposition in the ocean.[80] He goes so far as to assert that the porphyritic rocks were not thus formed in the sea, but that they are the result of deposits carried down by streams, especially torrents flowing down from mountains. Gneiss, he thinks, resulted from the detritus of granitic rocks, by means of an inappreciable cement, and formed in a way analogous to that of the porphyries.

Then he attacks the notion of Leibnitz of a liquid globe, in which all mineral substances were precipitated tumultuously, replacing this idea by his chemical notion of the origin of the crystalline and volcanic rocks.

He is on firmer ground in explaining the origin of chalk and clay, for the rocks of the region about Paris, with which he was familiar, are sedimentary and largely of organic origin.

In the "Addition" (pp. 173-188) following the fourth chapter Lamarck states that, allowing for the variations in the intensity of the cause of elevation of the land as the result of the accumulations of organic matter, he thinks he can, without great error, consider the mean rate as 324 mm. (1 foot) a century. As a concrete example it has been observed, he says, that one river valley has risen a foot higher in the space of eleven years.

Passing by his speculations on the displacement of the poles of the earth, and on the elevations of the equatorial regions, which will dispense with the necessity of considering the earth as originally in a liquid condition, he allows that "the terrestrial globe is not at all a body entirely and truly solid, but that it is a combination (reunion) of bodies more or less solid, displaceable in their mass or in their separate parts, and among which there is a great number which undergo continual changes in condition."

It was, of course, too early in the history of geology for Lamarck to seize hold of the fact, now so well known, that the highest mountain ranges, as the Alps, Pyrenees, the Caucasus, Atlas ranges, and the Mountains of the Moon (he does not mention the Himalayas) are the youngest, and that the lowest mountains, especially those in the more northern parts of the continents, are but the roots or remains of what were originally lofty mountain ranges. His idea, on the contrary, was, that the high mountain chains above mentioned were the remains of ancient equatorial elevations, which the fresh waters, for an enormous multitude of ages, were in the process of progressively eroding and wearing down.

What he says of the formation of coal is noteworthy:

"Wherever there are masses of fossil wood buried in the earth, the enormous subterranean beds of coal that are met with in different countries, these are the witnesses of ancient encroachments of the sea, over a country covered with forests; it has overturned them, buried them in deposits of clay, and then after a time has withdrawn."

In the appendix he briefly rehearses the laws of evolution as stated in his opening lecture of his course given in the year IX. (1801), and which would be the subject of his projected work, Biologie, the third and last part of the Terrestrial Physics, a work which was not published, but which was probably comprised in his Philosophie zoologique.

The Hydrogeologie closes with a "Memoire sur la matiere du feu" and one "sur la matiere du son," both being reprinted from the Journal de Physique.


[60] Evolution in Biology, in Darwiniana, New York, 1896, p. 212.

[61] Principles of Geology.

[62] Lyell's Principles of Geology, 8th edit., p. 22.

[63] Quoted from Flourens' Eloge Historique de Georges Cuvier, Hoefer's edition. Paris, 1854.

[64] Remarques sur les Coquilles fossiles de quelques Cantons de la Touraine. Mem. Acad. Sc. Paris, 1720, pp. 400-417.

[65] Eloge Historique de Werner, p. 113.

[66] History of Civilization, i. p. 627.

[67] France under Louis XV., p. 359.

[68] France under Louis XV., p. 360.

[69] See vol. iii. of his Memoires sur differentes Parties des Sciences et des Arts, pp. 209-403. Geikie does not give the date of the third volume of his work, but it was apparently about 1771, as vol. ii. was published in 1770. I copy Geikie's account of Guettard's observations often in his own words.

[70] Lyell's Principles of Geology.

[71] Geikie states that the doctrine of the origin of valleys by the erosive action of the streams which flow through them, though it has been credited to various writers, was first clearly taught from actual concrete examples by Desmarest. L. c., p. 65.

[72] Jameson's Cuvier's Theory of the Earth, New York, 1818.

[73] J. G. Lehmann of Berlin, in 1756, first formally stated that there was some regular succession in the strata, his observations being based on profiles of the Hartz and the Erzgebirge. He proposed the names Zechstein, Kupferschiefer, rothes Todtliegendes, which still linger in German treatises. G. C. Fuchsel (1762) wrote on the stratigraphy of the coal measures, the Permian and the later systems in Thuringia. (Zittel.)

[74] James Hutton was born at Edinburgh, June 3, 1726, where he died March 26, 1797.

[75] Quoted from Lyell's Principles of Geology, eighth edit., p. 17.

[76] Bulletin Societe Imp. des Naturalistes De Moscou, xlii. (1869), pt. 1. p. 4, quoted from Geikie's Geology, p. 276, footnote.

[77] Suess also, in his Anlitz etc., substitutes for the folding of the earth's crust by tangential pressure the subsidence by gravity of portions of the crust, their falling in obliging the sea to follow. Suess also explains the later transgressions of the sea by the progressive accumulation of sediments which raise the level of the sea by their deposition at its bottom. Thus he believes that the true factor in the deformation of the globe is vertical descent, and not, as Neumayr had previously thought, the folding of the crust.

[78] Bruguiere (1750-1799), a conchologist of great merit. His descriptions of new species were clear and precise. In his paper on the coal mines of the mountains of Cevennes (Choix de Memoires d'Hist. Nat., 1792) he made the first careful study of the coal formation in the Cevennes, including its beds of coal, sandstone, and shale. A. de Jussieu had previously supposed that the immense deposits of coal were due to sudden cataclysms or to one of the great revolutions of the earth during which the seas of the East or West Indies, having been driven as far as into Europe, had deposited on its soil all these exotic plants to be found there, after having torn them up on their way.

But Bruguiere, who is to be reckoned among the early uniformitarians, says that "the capacity for observation is now too well-informed to be contented with such a theory," and he explains the formation of coal deposits in the following essentially modern way:

"The stores of coal, although formed of vegetable substances, owe their origin to the sea. It is when the places where we now find them were covered by its waters that these prodigious masses of vegetable substances were gathered there, and this operation of nature, which astonishes the imagination, far from depending on any extraordinary commotion of the globe, seems, on the contrary, to be only the result of time, of an order of things now existing, and especially that of slow changes" (i, pp. 116, 117).

The proofs he brings forward are the horizontality of the beds, both of coal and deposits between them, the marine shells in the sandstones, the fossil fishes intermingled with the plant remains in the shales; moreover, some of the coal deposits are covered by beds of limestone containing marine shells which lived in the sea at a very great depth. The alternation of these beds, the great mass of vegetable matter which lived at small distances from the soil which conceals them, and the occurrence of these beds so high up, show that at this time Europe was almost wholly covered by the sea, the summits of the Alps and the Pyrenees being then, as he says, so many small islands in the midst of the ocean. He also intimates that the climate when these ferns ("bamboo" and "banana") lived was warmer than that of Europe at present.

In this essay, then, we see a great advance in correctness of geological observation and reasoning over any previous writers, while its suggestions were appreciated and adopted by Lamarck.

[79] Hooke had previously, in order to explain the presence of tropical fossil shells in England, indulged in a variety of speculations concerning changes in the position of the axis of the earth's rotation, "a shifting of the earth's centre of gravity analogous to the revolutions of the magnetic pole, etc." (Lyell's Principles). See also p. 132.

[80] Cuvier, in a footnote to his Discours (sixth edition, p. 49), in referring to this view, states that it originated with Rodig (La Physique, p. 106, Leipzig, 1801) and De Maillet (Telliamed, tome ii., p. 169), "also an infinity of new German works." He adds: "M. de Lamarck has recently expanded this system in France at great length in his Hydrogeologie and in his Philosophie zoologique." Is the Rodig referred to Ih. Chr. Rodig, author of Beitraege zur Naturwissenschaft (Leipzig, 1803. 8^o)? We have been unable to discover this view in De Maillet; Cuvier's reference to p. 169 is certainly incorrect, as quite a different subject is there discussed.



It was fortunate for palaeontology that the two greatest zooelogists of the end of the eighteenth and the beginning of the nineteenth centuries, Lamarck and Cuvier, lived in the Paris basin, a vast cemetery of corals, shells, and mammals; and not far from extensive deposits of cretaceous rocks packed with fossil invertebrates. With their then unrivalled knowledge of recent or existing forms, they could restore the assemblages of extinct animals which peopled the cretaceous ocean, and more especially the tertiary seas and lakes.

Lamarck drew his supplies of tertiary shells from the tertiary beds situated within a radius of from twenty-five to thirty miles from the centre of Paris, and chiefly from the village of Grignon, about ten miles west of Paris, beyond Versailles, and still a rich collecting ground for the students of the Museum and Sorbonne. He acknowledges the aid received from Defrance,[81] who had already collected at Grignon five hundred species of fossil shells, three-fourths of which, he says, had not then been described.

Lamarck's first essay ("Sur les fossiles") on fossils in general was published at the end of his Systeme des Animaux sans Vertebres (pp. 401-411), in 1801, a year before the publication of the Hydrogeologie. "I give the name fossils," he says, "to remains of living beings, changed by their long sojourn in the earth or under water, but whose forms and structure are still recognizable.

"From this point of view, the bones of vertebrate animals and the remains of testaceous molluscs, of certain crustacea, of many echinoderms, coral polyps, when after having been for a long time buried in the earth or hidden under the sea, will have undergone an alteration which, while changing their substance, has nevertheless destroyed neither their forms, their figures, nor the special features of their structures."

He goes on to say that the animal parts having been destroyed, the shell remains, being composed of calcareous matter. This shell, then, has lost its lustre, its colors, and often even its nacre, if it had any; and in this altered condition it is usually entirely white. In some cases where the shells have remained for a long period buried in a mud of some particular color, the shell receives the same color.

"In France, the fossil shells of Courtagnon near Reims, Grignon near Versailles, of what was formerly Touraine, etc., are almost all still in this calcareous state, having more or less completely lost their animal parts—namely, their lustre, their peculiar colors, and their nacre.

"Other fossils have undergone such an alteration that not only have they lost their animal portion, but their substance has been changed into a silicious matter. I give to this second kind of fossil the name of silicious fossils, and examples of this kind are the different oysters ('des ostracites'), many terebratulae ('des terebratulites'), trigoniae, ammonites, echinites, encrinites, etc.

"The fossils of which I have just spoken are in part buried in the earth, and others lie scattered over its surface. They occur in all the exposed parts of our globe, in the middle even of the largest continents, and, what is very remarkable, they occur on mountains up to very considerable altitudes. In many places the fossils buried in the earth form banks extending several leagues in length."[82]

Conchologists, he says, did not care to collect or study fossil shells, because they had lost their lustre, colors, and beauty, and they were rejected from collections on this account as "dead" and uninteresting. "But," he adds, "since attention has been drawn to the fact that these fossils are extremely valuable monuments for the study of the revolutions which have taken place in different regions of the earth, and of the changes which the beings living there have themselves successively undergone (in my lectures I have always insisted on these considerations), consequently the search for and study of fossils have excited special interest, and are now the objects of the greatest interest to naturalists."

Lamarck then combats the views of several naturalists, undoubtedly referring to Cuvier, that the fossils are extinct species, and that the earth has passed through a general catastrophe (un bouleversement universel) with the result that a multitude of species of animals and plants were consequently absolutely lost or destroyed, and remarks in the following telling and somewhat derisive language:

"A universal catastrophe (bouleversement) which necessarily regulates nothing, mixes up and disperses everything, is a very convenient way to solve the problem for those naturalists who wish to explain everything, and who do not take the trouble to observe and investigate the course followed by nature as respects its production and everything which constitutes its domain. I have already elsewhere said what should be thought of this so-called universal overturning of the globe; I return to fossils.

"It is very true that, of the great quantity of fossil shells gathered in the different countries of the earth, there are yet but a very small number of species whose living or marine analogues are known. Nevertheless, although this number may be very small, which no one will deny, it is enough to suppress the universality announced in the proposition cited above.

"It is well to remark that among the fossil shells whose marine or living analogues are not known, there are many which have a form closely allied to shells of the same genera known to be now living in the sea. However, they differ more or less, and cannot be rigorously regarded as the same species as those known to be living, since they do not perfectly resemble them. These are, it is said, extinct species.

"I am convinced that it is possible never to find, among fresh or marine shells, any shells perfectly similar to the fossil shells of which I have just spoken. I believe I know the reason; I proceed to succinctly indicate, and I hope that it will then be seen, that although many fossil shells are different from all the marine shells known, this does not prove that the species of these shells are extinct, but only that these species have changed as the result of time, and that actually they have different forms from those individuals whose fossil remains we have found."

Then he goes on in the same strain as in the opening discourse, saying that nothing terrestrial remains constant, that geological changes are continually occurring, and that these changes produce in living organisms a diversity of habits, a different mode of life, and as the result modifications or developments in their organs and in the shape of their parts.

"We should still realize that all the modifications which the organism undergoes in its structure and form as the result of the influence of circumstances which would influence this being, are propagated by generation, and that after a long series of ages not only will it be able to form new species, new genera, and even new orders, but also each species will even necessarily vary in its organization and in its forms.

"We should not be more surprised then if, among the numerous fossils which occur in all the dry parts of the globe and which offer us the remains of so many animals which have formerly existed, there should be found so few of which we know the living analogues. If there is in this, on the contrary, anything which should astonish us, it is to find that among these numerous fossil remains of beings which have lived there should be known to us some whose analogues still exist, from a germ to a vast multitude of living forms, of different and ascending grades of perfection, ending in man.

"This fact, as our collection of fossils proves, should lead us to suppose that the fossil remains of the animals whose living analogues we know are the less ancient fossils. The species to which each of them belongs had doubtless not yet time to vary in any of its forms.

"We should, then, never expect to find among the living species the totality of those that we meet with in the fossil state, and yet we cannot conclude that any species can really be lost or extinct. It is undoubtedly possible that among the largest animals some species have been destroyed as a result of the multiplication of man in the regions where they live. But this conjecture cannot be based on the consideration of fossils alone; we can only form an opinion in this respect when all the inhabited parts of the globe will have become perfectly known."

Lamarck did not have, as we now have, a knowledge of the geological succession of organic forms. The comparatively full and detailed view which we possess of the different vast assemblages of plant and animal life which have successively peopled the surface of our earth is a vision on which his eyes never rested. His slight, piecemeal glimpse of the animal life of the Paris Basin, and of the few other extinct forms then known, was all he had to depend upon or reason from. He was not disposed to believe that the thread of life once begun in the earliest times could be arbitrarily broken by catastrophic means; that there was no relation whatever between the earlier and later faunas. He utterly opposed Cuvier's view that species once formed could ever be lost or become extinct without ancestors or descendants. He on the contrary believed that species underwent a slow modification, and that the fossil forms are the ancestors of the animals now living. Moreover, Lamarck was the inventor of the first genealogical tree; his phylogeny, in the second volume of his Philosophie zoologique (p. 463), proves that he realized that the forms leading up to the existing ones were practically extinct, as we now use the word. Lamarck in theory was throughout, as Houssay well says, at one with us who are now living, but a century behind us in knowledge of the facts needed to support his theory.

In this first published expression of his views on palaeontology, we find the following truths enumerated on which the science is based: (1) The great length of geological time; (2) The continuous existence of animal life all through the different geological periods without sudden total extinctions and as sudden recreations of new assemblages; (3) The physical environment remaining practically the same throughout in general, but with (4) continual gradual but not catastrophic changes in the relative distribution of land and sea and other modifications in the physical geography, changes which (5) caused corresponding changes in the habitat, and (6) consequently in the habits of the living beings; so that there has been all through geological history a slow modification of life-forms.

Thus Lamarck's idea of creation is evolutional rather than uniformitarian. There was, from his point of view, not simply a uniform march along a dead level, but a progression, a change from the lower or generalized to the higher or specialized—an evolution or unfolding of organic life. In his effort to disprove catastrophism he failed to clearly see that species, as we style them, became extinct, though really the changes in the species practically amounted to extinctions of the earlier species as such. The little that was known to Lamarck at the time he wrote, prevented his knowing that species became extinct, as we say, or recognizing the fact that while some species, genera, and even orders may rise, culminate, and die, others are modified, while a few persist from one period to another. He did, however, see clearly that, taking plant and animal life as a whole, it underwent a slow modification, the later forms being the descendants of the earlier; and this truth is the central one of modern palaeontology.

Lamarck's first memoir on fossil shells, in which he described many new species, was published in 1802, after the appearance of his Hydrogeologie, to which he refers. It was the first of a series of descriptive papers, which appeared at intervals from 1802 to 1806. He does not fail to open the series of memoirs with some general remarks, which prove his broad, philosophic spirit, that characterizing the founder of a new science. He begins by saying that the fossil forms have their analogues in the tropical seas. He claims that there was evident proof that these molluscs could not have lived in a climate like that of places in which they now occur, instancing Nautilius pompilius, which now lives in the seas of warm countries; also the presence of exotic ferns, palms, fossil amber, fossil gum elastic, besides the occurrence of fossil crocodiles and elephants both in France and Germany.[83]

Hence there have been changes of climate since these forms flourished, and, he adds, the intervals between these changes of climate were stationary periods, whose duration was practically without limit. He assigns a duration to these stationary or intermediate periods of from three to five million years each—"a duration infinitely small relative to those required for all the changes of the earth's surface."

He refers in an appreciative way to the first special treatise on fossil shells ever published, that of an Englishman named Brander,[84] who collected the shells "out of the cliffs by the sea-coast between Christ Church and Lymington, but more especially about the cliffs by the village of Hordwell," where the strata are filled with these fossils. Lamarck, working upon collections of tertiary shells from Grignon and also from Courtagnon near Reims, with the aid of Brander's work showed that these beds, not known to be Eocene, extended into Hampshire, England; thus being the first to correlate by their fossils, though in a limited way to be sure, the tertiary beds of France with those of England.

How he at a later period (1805) regarded fossils and their relations to geology may be seen in his later memoirs, Sur les Fossiles des environs de Paris.[85]

"The determination of the characters, both generic and specific, of animals of which we find the fossil remains in almost all the dry parts of the continents and large islands of our globe will be, from several points of view, a thing extremely useful to the progress of natural history. At the outset, the more this determination is advanced, the more will it tend to complete our knowledge in regard to the species which exist in nature and of those which have existed, as it is true that some of them have been lost, as we have reason to believe, at least as concerns the large animals. Moreover, this same determination will be singularly advantageous for the advancement of geology; for the fossil remains in question may be considered, from their nature, their condition, and their situation, as authentic monuments of the revolutions which the surface of our globe has undergone, and they can throw a strong light on the nature and character of these revolutions."

This series of papers on the fossils of the Paris tertiary basin extended through the first eight volumes of the Annales, and were gathered into a volume published in 1806. In his descriptions his work was comparative, the fossil species being compared with their living representatives. The thirty plates, containing 483 figures representing 184 species (exclusive of those figured by Brard), were afterwards published, with the explanations, but not the descriptions, as a separate volume in 1823.[86] This (the text published in 1806) is the first truly scientific palaeontological work ever published, preceding Cuvier's Ossemens fossiles by six years.

When we consider Lamarck's—at his time unrivalled—knowledge of molluscs, his philosophical treatment of the relations of the study of fossils to geology, his correlation of the tertiary beds of England with those of France, and his comparative descriptions of the fossil forms represented by the existing shells, it seems not unreasonable to regard him as the founder of invertebrate palaeontology, as Cuvier was of vertebrate or mammalian palaeontology.

We have entered the claim that Lamarck was one of the chief founders of palaeontology, and the first French author of a genuine, detailed palaeontological treatise. It must be admitted, therefore, that the statement generally made that Cuvier was the founder of this science should be somewhat modified, though he may be regarded as the chief founder of vertebrate palaeontology.

In this field, however, Cuvier had his precursors not only in Germany and Holland, but also in France.

Our information as to the history of the rise of vertebrate palaeontology is taken from Blainville's posthumous work entitled Cuvier et Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire.[87] In this work, a severe critical and perhaps not always sufficiently appreciative account of Cuvier's character and work, we find an excellent history of the first beginnings of vertebrate palaeontology. Blainville has little or nothing to say of the first steps in invertebrate palaeontology, and, singularly enough, not a word of Lamarck's principles and of his papers and works on fossil shells—a rather strange oversight, because he was a friend and admirer of Lamarck, and succeeded him in one of the two departments of invertebrates created at the Museum d'Histoire Naturelle after Lamarck's death.

Blainville, who by the way was the first to propose the word palaeontology, shows that the study of the great extinct mammals had for forty years been held in great esteem in Germany, before Faujas and Cuvier took up the subject in France. Two Frenchmen, also before 1789, had examined mammalian bones. Thus Bernard de Jussieu knew of the existence in a fossil state of the teeth of the hippopotamus. Guettard[88] published in 1760 a memoir on the fossil bones of Aix en Provence. Lamanon (1780-1783)[89] in a beautiful memoir described a head, almost entire, found in the gypsum beds of Paris. Daubenton had also slightly anticipated Cuvier's law of correlation, giving "a very remarkable example of the mode of procedure to follow in order to solve these kinds of questions by the way in which he had recognized a bone of a giraffe whose skeleton he did not possess" (De Blainville).

"But it was especially in Germany, in the hands of Pallas, Camper, Blumenbach, anatomists and physicians, also those of Walch, Merck, Hollmann, Esper, Rosenmueller, and Collini (who was not, however, occupied with natural history), of Beckman, who had even discussed the subject in a general way (De reductione rerum fossilium ad genera naturalia prototyporum—Nov. Comm. Soc. Scient. Goettingensis, t. ii.), that palaeontology applied to quadrupeds had already settled all that pertained to the largest species."

As early as 1764, Hollmann[90] had admirably identified the bones of a rhinoceros found in a bone-deposit of the Hartz, although he had no skeleton of this animal for comparison.

Pallas, in a series of memoirs dating from 1773, had discovered and distinguished the species of Siberian elephant or mammoth, the rhinoceros, and the large species of oxen and buffalo whose bones were found in such abundance in the quaternary deposits of Siberia; and, as Blainville says, if he did not distinguish the species, it was because at this epoch the question of the distinction of the two species of rhinoceros and of elephants, in the absence of material, could not be solved. This solution, however, was made by the Dutch anatomist Camper, in 1777, who had brought together at Amsterdam a collection of skeletons and skulls of the existing species which enabled him for the first time to make the necessary comparisons between the extinct and living species. A few years later (1780) Blumenbach confirmed Camper's identification, and gave the name of Elephas primigenius to the Siberian mammoth.

"Beckman" [says Blainville] "as early as 1772 had even published a very good memoir on the way in which we should consider fossil organic bodies; he was also the first to propose using the name fossilia instead of petrefacta, and to name the science which studies fossils Oryctology. It was also he who admitted that these bodies should be studied with reference to the class, order, genus, species, as we would do with a living being, and he compared them, which he called prototypes,[91] with their analogues. He then passes in review, following the zooelogical order, the fossils which had been discovered by naturalists. He even described one of them as a new species, besides citing, with an erudition then rare, all the authors and all the works where they were described. He did no more than to indicate but not name each species. Thus he was the means of soon producing a number of German authors who made little advance from lack of anatomical knowledge; but afterwards the task fell into the hands of men capable of giving to the newly created palaeontology a remarkable impulse, and one which since then has not abated."

Blumenbach,[92] the most eminent and all-round German anatomist and physiologist of his time, one of the founders of anthropology as well as of palaeontology, had meanwhile established the fact that there were two species of fossil cave-bear, which he named Ursus spelaeus and U. arctoideus. He began to publish his Archaeologia telluris,[93] the first part of which appeared in 1803.

From Blainville's useful summary we learn that Blumenbach, mainly limiting his work to the fossils of Hanover, aimed at studying fossils in order to explain the revolutions of the earth.

"Hence the order he proposed to follow was not that commonly followed in treatises on oryctology, namely, systematic, following the classes and the orders of the animal and vegetable kingdom, but in a chronological order, in such a way as to show that the classes, so far as it was possible to conjecture with any probability, were established after or in consequence of the different revolutions of the earth.

"Thus, as we see, all the great questions, more or less insoluble, which the study of fossil organic bodies can offer, were raised and even discussed by the celebrated professor of Goettingen as early as 1803, before anything of the sort could have arisen from the essays of M. G. Cuvier; the errors of distribution in the classes committed by Blumenbach were due to the backward state of geology."

The political troubles of Germany, which also bore heavily upon the University of Goettingen, probably brought Blumenbach's labors to an end, for after a second "specimen" of his work, of less importance than the first, the Archaeologia telluris was discontinued.

The French geologist Faujas,[94] who also published several articles on fossil animals, ceased his labors, and now Cuvier began his memorable work.

The field of the labors and triumphs of palaeontology were now transferred to France. We have seen that the year 1793, when Lamarck and Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire were appointed to fill the new zooelogical chairs, and the latter had in 1795 called Cuvier from Normandy to Paris, was a time of renascence of the natural sciences in France. Cuvier began a course of lectures on comparative anatomy at the Museum of Natural History. He was more familiar than any one else in France with the progress in natural science in Germany, and had felt the stimulus arising from this source; besides, as Blainville stated, he was also impelled by the questions boldly raised by Faujas in his geological lectures, who was somewhat of the school of Buffon. Cuvier, moreover, had at his disposition the collection of skeletons of the Museum, which was frequently increased by those of the animals which died in the menagerie. With his knowledge of comparative anatomy, of which, after Vicq-d'Azyr, he was the chief founder, and with the gypsum quarry of Montmartre, that rich cemetery of tertiary mammals, to draw from, he had the whole field before him, and rapidly built up his own vast reputation and thus added to the glory of France.

His first contribution to palaeontology[95] appeared in 1798, in which he announced his intention of publishing an extended work on fossil bones of quadrupeds, to restore the skeletons and to compare them with those now living, and to determine their relations and differences; but, says Blainville, in the list of thirty or forty species which he enumerates in his tableau, none was apparently discovered by him, unless it was the species of "dog" of Montmartre, which he afterward referred to his new genera Palaeotherium and Anaplotherium. In 1801 (le 26 brumaire, an IX.) he published, by order of the Institut, the programme of a work on fossil quadrupeds, with an increased number of species; but, as Blainville states, "It was not until 1804, and in tome iii. of the Annales du Museum, namely, more than three years after his programme, that he began his publications by fragments and without any order, while these publications lasted more than eight years before they were collected into a general work"; this "corps d'ouvrage" being the Ossemens fossiles, which was issued in 1812 in four quarto volumes, with an atlas of plates.

It is with much interest, then, that we turn to Cuvier's great work, which brought him such immediate and widespread fame, in order to see how he treated his subject. His general views are contained in the preliminary remarks in his well-known "Essay on the Theory of the Earth" (1812), which was followed in 1821 by his Discours sur les Revolutions de la Surface du Globe.

It was written in a more attractive and vigorous style than the writings of Lamarck, more elegant, concise, and with less repetition, but it is destitute of the philosophic grasp, and is not the work of a profound thinker, but rather of a man of talent who was an industrious collector and accurate describer of fossil bones, of a high order to be sure, but analytical rather than synthetical, of one knowing well the value of carefully ascertained and demonstrated facts, but too cautious, if he was by nature able to do so, to speculate on what may have seemed to him too few facts. It is also the work of one who fell in with the current views of the time as to the general bearing of his discoveries on philosophy and theology, believing as he did in the universality of the Noachian deluge.

Like Lamarck, Cuvier independently made use of the comparative method, the foundation method in palaeontology; and Cuvier's well-known "law of correlation of structures," so well exemplified in the vertebrates, was a fresh, new contribution to philosophical biology.

In his Discours, speaking of the difficulty of determining the bones of fossil quadrupeds, as compared with fossil shells or the remains of fishes, he remarks:[96]

"Happily comparative anatomy possessed a principle which, well developed, was capable of overcoming every difficulty; it was that of the correlation of forms in organic beings, by means of which each kind of organism can with exactitude be recognized by every fragment of each of its parts.—Every organized being," he adds, "forms an entire system, unique and closed, whose organs mutually correspond, and concur in the same definite action by a reciprocal reaction. Hence none of these parts can change without the other being also modified, and consequently each of them, taken separately, indicates and produces (donne) all the others.

"A claw, a shoulder-blade, a condyle, a leg or arm-bone, or any other bone separately considered, enables us to discover the kind of teeth to which they have belonged; so also reciprocally we may determine the form of the other bones from the teeth. Thus, commencing our investigation by a careful survey of any one bone by itself, a person who is sufficiently master of the laws of organic structure can reconstruct the entire animal. The smallest facet of bone, the smallest apophysis, has a determinate character, relative to the class, the order, the genus, and the species to which it belongs, so that even when one has only the extremity of a well-preserved bone, he can, with careful examination, assisted by analogy and exact comparison, determine all these things as surely as if he had before him the entire animal."

Cuvier adds that he has enjoyed every kind of advantage for such investigations owing to his fortunate situation in the Museum of Natural History, and that by assiduous researches for nearly thirty years[97] he has collected skeletons of all the genera and sub-genera of quadrupeds, with those of many species in certain genera, and several individuals of certain species. With such means it was easy for him to multiply his comparisons, and to verify in all their details the applications of his laws.

Such is the famous law of correlation of parts, of Cuvier. It could be easily understood by the layman, and its enunciation added vastly to the popular reputation and prestige of the young science of comparative anatomy.[98] In his time, and applied to the forms occurring in the Paris Basin, it was a most valuable, ingenious, and yet obvious method, and even now is the principal rule the palaeontologist follows in identifying fragments of fossils of any class. But it has its limitations, and it goes without saying that the more complete the fossil skeleton of a vertebrate, or the remains of an arthropod, the more complete will be our conception of the form of the extinct organism. It may be misleading in the numerous cases of convergence and of generalized forms which now abound in our palaeontological collections. We can well understand how guarded one must be in working out the restorations of dinosaurs and fossil birds, of the Permian and Triassic theromorphs, and the Tertiary creodonts as compared with existing carnivora.

As the late O. C. Marsh[99] observed:

"We know to-day that unknown extinct animals cannot be restored from a single tooth or claw unless they are very similar to forms already known. Had Cuvier himself applied his methods to many forms from the early tertiary or older formations he would have failed. If, for instance, he had had before him the disconnected fragments of an eocene tillodont he would undoubtedly have referred a molar tooth to one of his pachyderms, an incisor tooth to a rodent, and a claw bone to a carnivore. The tooth of a Hesperornis would have given him no possible hint of the rest of the skeleton, nor its swimming feet the slightest clue to the ostrich-like sternum or skull. And yet the earnest belief in his own methods led Cuvier to some of his most important discoveries."

Let us now examine from Cuvier's own words in his Discours, not relying on the statements of his expositors or followers, just what he taught notwithstanding the clear utterances of his older colleague, Lamarck, whose views he set aside and either ignored or ridiculed.[100]

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

He at the outset affirms that nature has, like mankind, also had her intestine wars, and that "the surface of the globe has been much convulsed by successive revolutions and various catastrophes."

As first proof of the revolutions on the surface of the earth he instances fossil shells, which in the lowest and most level parts of the earth are "almost everywhere in such a perfect state of preservation that even the smallest of them retain their most delicate parts, their sharpest ridges, and their finest and tenderest processes."

"We are therefore forcibly led to believe not only that the sea has at one period or another covered all our plains, but that it must have remained there for a long time and in a state of tranquillity, which circumstance was necessary for the formation of deposits so extensive, so thick, in part so solid, and filled with the exuviae of aquatic animals."

But the traces of revolutions become still more marked when we ascend a little higher and approach nearer to the foot of the great mountain chains. Hence the strata are variously inclined, and at times vertical, contain shells differing specifically from those of beds on the plains below, and are covered by horizontal later beds. Thus the sea, previous to the formation of the horizontal strata, had formed others, which by some means have been broken, lifted up, and overturned in a thousand ways. There had therefore been also at least one change in the basin of that sea which preceded ours; it had also experienced at least one revolution.

He then gives proofs that such revolutions have been numerous.

"Thus the great catastrophes which have produced revolutions in the basins of the sea were preceded, accompanied, and followed by changes in the nature of the fluid and of the substances which it held in solution, and when the surface of the seas came to be divided by islands and projecting ridges, different changes took place in every separate basin."

We now come to the Cuvierian doctrine par excellence, one in which he radically differs from Lamarck's views as to the genetic relations between the organisms of successive strata.

"Amid these changes of the general fluid it must have been almost impossible for the same kind of animals to continue to live, nor did they do so in fact. Their species, and even their genera, change with the strata, and although the same species occasionally recur at small distances, it is generally the case that the shells of the ancient strata have forms peculiar to themselves; that they gradually disappear till they are not to be seen at all in the recent strata, still less in the existing seas, in which, indeed, we never discover their corresponding species, and where several even of their genera are not to be found; that, on the contrary, the shells of the recent strata resemble, as regards the genus, those which still exist in the sea, and that in the last formed and loosest of these strata there are some species which the eye of the most expert naturalists cannot distinguish from those which at present inhabit the ocean.

"In animal nature, therefore, there has been a succession of changes corresponding to those which have taken place in the chemical nature of the fluid; and when the sea last receded from our continent its inhabitants were not very different from those which it still continues to support."

He then refers to successive irruptions and retreats of the sea, "the final result of which, however, has been a universal depression of the level of the sea."

"These repeated irruptions and retreats of the sea have neither been slow nor gradual; most of the catastrophes which have occasioned them have been sudden."

He then adds his proofs of the occurrence of revolutions before the existence of living beings. Like Lamarck, Cuvier was a Wernerian, and in speaking of the older or primitive crystalline rocks which contain no vestige of fossils, he accepted the view of the German theorist in geology, that granites forming the axis of mountain chains were formed in a fluid.

We must give Cuvier the credit of fully appreciating the value of fossils as being what he calls "historical documents," also for appreciating the fact that there were a number of revolutions marking either the incoming or end of a geological period; but as he failed to perceive the unity of organization in organic beings, and their genetic relationship, as had been indicated by Lamarck and by Geoffroy St. Hilaire, so in geological history he did not grasp, as did Lamarck, the vast extent of geological time, and the general uninterrupted continuity of geological events. He was analytic, thoroughly believing in the importance of confining himself to the discovery of facts, and, considering the multitude of fantastic hypotheses and suggestions of previous writers of the eighteenth century, this was sound, sensible, and thoroughly scientific. But unfortunately he did not stop here. Master of facts concerning the fossil mammals of the Paris Basin, he also—usually cautious and always a shrewd man of the world—fell into the error of writing his "theory of the world," and of going to the extreme length of imagining universal catastrophes where there are but local ones, a universal Noachian deluge when there was none, and of assuming that there were at successive periods thoroughgoing total and sudden extinctions of life, and as sudden recreations. Cuvier was a natural leader of men, a ready debater, and a clear, forcible writer, a man of great executive force, but lacking in insight and imagination; he dominated scientific Paris and France, he was the law-giver and autocrat of the laboratories of Paris, and the views of quiet, thoughtful, profound scholars such as Lamarck and Geoffroy St. Hilaire were disdainfully pushed aside, overborne, and the progress of geological thought was arrested, while, owing to his great prestige, the rising views of the Lamarckian school were nipped in the bud. Every one, after the appearance of Cuvier's great work on fossil mammals and of his Regne Animal, was a Cuvierian, and down to the time of Lyell and of Charles Darwin all naturalists, with only here and there an exception, were pronounced Cuvierians in biology and geology—catastrophists rather than uniformitarians. We now, with the increase of knowledge of physical and historical geology, of the succession of life on the earth, of the unity of organization pervading that life from monad to man all through the ages from the Precambrian to the present age, know that there were vast periods of preparation followed by crises, perhaps geologically brief, when there were widespread changes in physical geography, which reacted on the life-forms, rendering certain ones extinct, and modifying others; but this conception is entirely distinct from the views of Cuvier and his school,[101] which may, in the light of our present knowledge, properly be deemed not only totally inadequate, but childish and fantastic.

Cuvier cites the view of Dolomieu, the well-known geologist and mineralogist (1770-1801), only, however, to reject it, who went to the extent of supposing that "tides of seven or eight hundred fathoms have carried off from time to time the bottom of the ocean, throwing it up in mountains and hills on the primitive valleys and plains of the continents" (Dolomieu in Journal de Physique).

Cuvier met with objections to his extreme views. In his discourse he thus endeavors to answer "the following objection" which "has already been stated against my conclusions":

"Why may not the non-existing races of mammiferous land quadrupeds be mere modifications or varieties of those ancient races which we now find in the fossil state, which modifications may have been produced by change of climate and other local circumstances, and since raised to the present excessive differences by the operation of similar causes during a long succession of ages?

"This objection may appear strong to those who believe in the indefinite possibility of change of forms in organized bodies, and think that during a succession of ages, and by alternations of habits, all the species may change into each other, or one of them give birth to all the rest. Yet to these persons the following answer may be given from their own system: If the species have changed by degrees, as they assume, we ought to find traces of this gradual modification. Thus, between the Palaeotherium and the species of our own days, we should be able to discover some intermediate forms; and yet no such discovery has ever been made. Since the bowels of the earth have not preserved monuments of this strange genealogy, we have a right to conclude that the ancient and now extinct species were as permanent in their forms and characters as those which exist at present; or, at least, that the catastrophe which destroyed them did not have sufficient time for the production of the changes that are alleged to have taken place."

Cuvier thus emphatically rejects all idea that any of the tertiary mammals could have been the ancestral forms of those now existing.

"From all these well-established facts, there does not seem to be the smallest foundation for supposing that the new genera which I have discovered or established among extraneous fossils, such as the palaeotherium, anaplotherium, megalonynx, mastodon, pterodactylis, etc., have ever been the sources of any of our present animals, which only differ as far as they are influenced by time or climate. Even if it should prove true, which I am far from believing to be the case, that the fossil elephants, rhinoceroses, elks, and bears do not differ further from the present existing species of the same genera than the present races of dogs differ among themselves, this would by no means be a sufficient reason to conclude that they were of the same species; since the races or varieties of dogs have been influenced by the trammels of domestication, which these other animals never did and indeed never could experience."[102]

The extreme views of Cuvier as to the frequent renewal and extinction of life were afterward (in 1850) carried out to an exaggerated extent by D'Orbigny, who maintained that the life of the earth must have become extinct and again renewed twenty-seven times. Similar views were held by Agassiz, who, however, maintained the geological succession of animals and the parallelism between their embryonic development and geological succession, the two foundation stones of the biogenetic law of Haeckel. But immediately after the publication of Cuvier's Ossemens fossiles, as early as 1813, Von Schlotheim, the founder of vegetable palaeontology, refused to admit that each set of beds was the result of such a thoroughgoing revolution.[103]

At a later date Bronn "demonstrated that certain species indeed really passed from one formation to another, and though stratigraphic boundaries are often barriers confining the persistence of some form, still this is not an absolute rule, since the species in nowise appear in their entirety."[104] At present the persistence of genera like Saccamina, Lingula, Ceratodus, etc., from one age to another, or even through two or more geological ages, is well known, while Atrypa reticulatus, a species of world-wide distribution, lived from near the beginning of the Upper Silurian to the Waverly or beginning of the Carboniferous age.

Such were the views of the distinguished founder of vertebrate palaeontology. When we compare the Hydrogeologie of Lamarck with Cuvier's Discours, we see, though some erroneous views, some very fantastic conceptions are held, in common with others of his time, in regard to changes of level of the land and the origin of the crystalline rocks, that it did contain the principles upon which modern palaeontology is founded, while those of Cuvier are now in the limbo—so densely populated—of exploded, ill-founded theories.

Our claim that Lamarck should share with Cuvier the honor of being a founder of palaeontology[105] is substantiated by the philosophic Lyell, who as early as 1836, in his Principles of Geology, expresses the same view in the following words: "The labors of Cuvier in comparative osteology, and of Lamarck in recent and fossil shells, had raised these departments of study to a rank of which they had never previously been deemed susceptible."

Our distinguished American palaeontologist, the late O. C. Marsh, takes the same view, and draws the following parallel between the two great French naturalists:

"In looking back from this point of view, the philosophical breadth of Lamarck's conclusions, in comparison with those of Cuvier, is clearly evident. The invertebrates on which Lamarck worked offered less striking evidence of change than the various animals investigated by Cuvier; yet they led Lamarck directly to evolution, while Cuvier ignored what was before him on this point, and rejected the proof offered by others. Both pursued the same methods, and had an abundance of material on which to work, yet the facts observed induced Cuvier to believe in catastrophes, and Lamarck in the uniform course of nature. Cuvier declared species to be permanent; Lamarck, that they were descended from others. Both men stand in the first rank in science; but Lamarck was the prophetic genius, half a century in advance of his time."[106]


[81] Although Defrance (born 1759, died in 1850) aided Lamarck in collecting tertiary shells, his earliest palaeontological paper (on Hipponyx) did not appear until the year 1819.

[82] In a footnote Lamarck refers to an unpublished work, which probably formed a part of the Hydrogeologie, published in the following year. "Voyez a ce sujet mon ouvrage intitule: De l'influence du mouvement des eaus sur la surface du globe terrestre, et des indices du deplacement continuel du bassin des mers, ainsi que de son transport successif sur les differens points de la surface du globe" (no date).

[83] It should be stated that the first observer to inaugurate the comparative method was that remarkable forerunner of modern palaeontologists, Steno the Dane, who was for a while a professor at Padua. In 1669, in his treatise entitled De Solido intra Solidum naturaliter contento, which Lyell translates "On gems, crystals, and organic petrefactions inclosed within solid rocks," he showed, by dissecting a shark from the Mediterranean, that certain fossil teeth found in Tuscany were also those of some shark. "He had also compared the shells discovered in the Italian strata with living species, pointed out their resemblance, and traced the various gradations from shells merely calcined, or which had only lost their animal gluten, to those petrefactions in which there was a perfect substitution of stony matter" (Lyell's Principles, p. 25). About twenty years afterwards, the English philosopher Robert Hooke, in a discourse on earthquakes, written in 1688, but published posthumously in 1705, was aware that the fossil ammonites, nautili, and many other shells and fossil skeletons found in England, were of different species from any then known; but he doubted whether the species had become extinct, observing that the knowledge of naturalists of all the marine species, especially those inhabiting the deep sea, was very deficient. In some parts of his writings, however, he leans to the opinion that species had been lost. Some species, he observes with great sagacity, "are peculiar to certain places, and not to be found elsewhere." Turtles and such large ammonites as are found in Portland seem to have been the productions of hotter countries, and he thought that England once lay under the sea within the torrid zone (Lyell's Principles).

Gesner the botanist, of Zurich, also published in 1758 an excellent treatise on petrefactions and the changes of the earth which they testify. He observed that some fossils, "such as ammonites, gryphites, belemnites, and other shells, are either of unknown species or found only in the Indian and other distant seas" (Lyell's Principles).

Geikie estimates very highly Guettard's labors in palaeontology, saying that "his descriptions and excellent drawings entitle him to rank as the first great leader of the palaeontological school of France." He published many long and elaborate memoirs containing brief descriptions, but without specific names, and figured some hundreds of fossil shells. He was the first to recognize trilobites (Illaenus) in the Silurian slates of Angers, in a memoir published in 1762. Some of his generic names, says Geikie, "have passed into the languages of modern palaeontology," and one of the genera of chalk sponges which he described has been named after him, Guettardia. In his memoir "On the accidents that have befallen fossil shells compared with those which are found to happen to shells now living in the sea" (Trans. Acad. Roy. Sciences, 1765, pp. 189, 329, 399) he shows that the beds of fossil shells on the land present the closest possible analogy to the flow of the present sea, so that it becomes impossible to doubt that the accidents, such as broken and worn shells, which have affected the fossil organisms, arose from precisely the same causes as those of exactly the same nature that still befall their successors on the existing ocean bottom. On the other hand, Geikie observes that it must be acknowledged "that Guettard does not seem to have had any clear ideas of the sequence of formations and of geological structures."

[84] Scheuchzer's "Complaint and Vindication of the Fishes" (Piscium Querelae et Vindiciae, Germany, 1708), "a work of zooelogical merit, in which he gave some good plates and descriptions of fossil fish" (Lyell). Gesner's treatise on petrefactions preceded Lamarck's work in this direction, as did Brander's Fossillia Hantoniensia, published in 1766, which contained "excellent figures of fossil shells from the more modern (or Eocene) marine strata of Hampshire. In his opinion fossil animals and testacea were, for the most part, of unknown species, and of such as were known the living analogues now belonged to southern latitudes" (Lyell's Principles, eighth edition, p. 46).

[85] Annales du Museum d'Histoire Naturelle, vi., 1805, pp. 222-228.

[86] Recueil de Planches des Coquilles fossiles des environs de Paris (Paris, 1823). There are added two plates of fossil fresh-water shells (twenty-one species of Limnaea, etc.) by Brard, with sixty-two figures.

[87] Cuvier et Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire. Biographies scientifiques, par Ducrotay de Blainville (Paris, 1890, p. 446).

[88] "Memoire sur des os fossiles decouverts aupres de la ville d'Aix en Provence" (Mem. Acad. Sc., Paris, 1760, pp. 209-220).

[89] "Sur un os d'une grosseur enorme qu'on a trouve dans une couche de glaise au milieu de Paris; et en general sur les ossemens fossiles qui ont appartenu a de grands animaux" (Journal de Physique, tome xvii., 1781. pp. 393-405). Lamanon also, in 1780, published in the same Journal an article on the nature and position of the bones found at Aix en Provence; and in 1783 another article on the fossil bones belonging to gigantic animals.

[90] Hollmann had still earlier published a paper entitled De corporum marinorum, aliorumque peregrinorum in terra continente origine (Commentarii Soc. Goettingen., tom. iii., 1753, pp. 285-374).

[91] Novi Commentarii Soc. Sc. Goettingensis, tom. ii., Commentat., tom. i.

[92] His first palaeontological article appears to have been one entitled Beitraege zur Naturgeschichte der Vorwelt (Lichtenberg, Voigt's Magaz., Bd. vi., S. 4, 1790, pp. 1-17). I have been unable to ascertain in which of his publications he describes and names the cave-bear.

[93] Specimen archaeologia telluris terrarumque imprimis Hannoveranae, pts. i., ii. Cum 4 tabl. aen. 4 maj. Gottingae, 1803.

[94] Faujas Saint-Fond wrote articles on fossil bones (1794); on fossil plants both of France (1803) and of Monte Bolca (1820); on a fish from Nanterre (1802) and a fossil turtle (1803); on two species of fossil ox, whose skulls were found in Germany, France, and England (1803), and on an elephant's tusk found in the volcanic tufa of Darbres (1803); on the fossil shells of Mayence (1806); and on a new genus (Clotho) of bivalve shells.

[95] Sur les ossemens qui se trouvent dans le gyps de Montmartre (Bulletin des sciences pour la Societe philomatique, tomes 1, 2, 1798, pp. 154-155).

[96] The following account is translated from the fourth edition of the Ossemens fossiles, vol. 1., 1834, also the sixth edition of the Discours, separately published in 1830. It does not differ materially from the first edition of the Essay on the Theory of the Earth, translated by Jameson, and republished in New York, with additions by Samuel L. Mitchell, in 1818.

[97] In the first edition of the Theorie he says fifteen years, writing in 1812. In the later edition he changed the number of years to thirty.

[98] De Blainville is inclined to make light of Cuvier's law and of his assumptions; and in his somewhat cynical, depreciatory way, says:

"Thus for the thirty years during which appeared the works of M. G. Cuvier on fossil bones, under the most favorable circumstances, in a kind of renascence of the science of organization of animals, then almost effaced in France, aided by the richest osteological collections which then existed in Europe, M. G. Cuvier passed an active and a comparatively long life, in a region abounding in fossil bones, without having established any other principle in osteology than a witticism which he had been unable for a moment to take seriously himself, because he had not yet investigated or sufficiently studied the science of organization, which I even doubt, to speak frankly, if he ever did. Otherwise, he would himself soon have perceived the falsity of his assertion that a single facet of a bone was sufficient to reconstruct a skeleton from the observation that everything is harmoniously correlated in an animal. It is a great thing if the memory, aided by a strong imagination, can thus pass from a bone to the entire skeleton, even in an animal well known and studied even to satiety; but for an unknown animal, there is no one except a man but slightly acquainted with the anatomy of animals who could pretend to do it. It is not true anatomists like Hunter, Camper, Pallas, Vicq-d'Azyr, Blumenbach, Soemmering, and Meckel who would be so presuming, and M. G. Cuvier would have been himself much embarrassed if he had been taken at his word, and besides it is this assertion which will remain formulated in the mouths of the ignorant, and which has already made many persons believe that it is possible to answer the most difficult and often insoluble problems in palaeontology, without having made any preliminary study, with the aid of dividers, and, on the other hand, discouraging the Blumenbachs and Soemmerings from giving their attention to this kind of work."

Huxley has, inter alia, put the case in a somewhat similar way, to show that the law should at least be applied with much caution to unknown forms:

"Cuvier, in the Discours sur les Revolutions de la Surface du Globe, strangely credits himself, and has ever since been credited by others, with the invention of a new method of palaeontological research. But if you will turn to the Recherches sur les Ossemens fossiles, and watch Cuvier not speculating, but working, you will find that his method is neither more nor less than that of Steno. If he was able to make his famous prophecy from the jaw which lay upon the surface of a block of stone to the pelvis which lay hidden in it, it was not because either he or any one else knew, or knows, why a certain form of jaw is, as a rule, constantly accompanied by the presence of marsupial bones, but simply because experience has shown that these two structures are cooerdinated" (Science and Hebrew Tradition. Rise and Progress of Paleontology 1881, p. 23).

[99] History and Methods of Paleontological Discovery (1879).

[100] The following statement of Cuvier's views is taken from Jameson's translation of the first Essay on the Theory of the Earth, "which formed the introduction to his Recherches sur les Ossemens fossiles," the first edition of which appeared in 1812, or ten years after the publication of the Hydrogeologie. The original I have not seen, but I have compared Jameson's translation with the sixth edition of the Discours (1820).

[101] Cuvier, in speaking of these revolutions, "which have changed the surface of our earth," correctly reasons that they must have excited a more powerful action upon terrestrial quadrupeds than upon marine animals. "As these revolutions," he says, "have consisted chiefly in changes of the bed of the sea, and as the waters must have destroyed all the quadrupeds which they reached if their irruption over the land was general, they must have destroyed the entire class, or, if confined only to certain continents at one time, they must have destroyed at least all the species inhabiting these continents, without having the same effect upon the marine animals. On the other hand, millions of aquatic animals may have been left quite dry, or buried in newly formed strata or thrown violently on the coasts, while their races may have been still preserved in more peaceful parts of the sea, whence they might again propagate and spread after the agitation of the water had ceased."

[102] Discours, etc. Sixth edition.

[103] Felix Bernard, The Principles of Paleontology, Paris, 1895, translated by C. E. Brooks, edited by J. M. Clark, from 14th Annual Report New York State Geologist, 1895, pp. 127-217 (p. 16). Bernard gives no reference to the work in which Schlotheim expressed this opinion. E. v. Schlotheim's first work, Flora der Vorwelt, appeared in 1804, entitled Beschreibung merkwuerdiger Kraueterabdruecke und Pflanzenversteinerungen. Ein Beytrag zur Flora der Vorvelt. I Abtheil. Mit 14 Kpfrn. 4^o. Gotha, 1804. A later work was Beytraege zur Naturgeschichte der Versteinerungen in geognostischer Hinsicht (Denkschrift d. k. Academie d. Wissenschaften zu Muenchen fuer den Jahren 1816 und 1817. 8 Taf. Muenchen, 1819). He was followed in Germany by Sternberg (Versuch einer geognostischbotanischen Darstellung der Flora der Vorvelt. 1-8. 1811. Leipzig, 1820-38); and in France by A. T. Brongniart, 1801-1876 (Histoire des Vegetaux fossiles, 1828). These were the pioneers in palaeophytology.

[104] Bernard's History and Methods of Paleontological Discovery (1879), p. 23.

[105] In his valuable and comprehensive Geschichte der Geologie und Palaeontologie (1899), Prof. K. von Zittel, while referring to Lamarck's works on the tertiary shells of Paris and his Animaux sans Vertebres, also giving a just and full account of his life, practically gives him the credit of being one of the founders of invertebrate palaeontology. He speaks of him as "the reformer and founder of scientific conchology," and states that "he defined with wonderful acuteness the numerous genera and species of invertebrate animals, and created thereby for the ten years following an authoritative foundation." Zittel, however, does not mention the Hydrogeologie. Probably so rare a book was overlooked by the eminent German palaeontologist.

[106] History and Methods of Paleontological Discovery (1879), p. 23.



Lamarck died before the rise of the sciences of morphology, embryology, and cytology. As to palaeontology, which he aided in founding, he had but the slightest idea of the geological succession of life-forms, and not an inkling of the biogenetic law or recapitulation theory. Little did he know or foresee that the main and strongest support of his own theory was to be this same science of the extinct forms of life. Yet it is a matter of interest to know what were his views or opinions on the nature of life; whether he made any suggestions bearing on the doctrine of the unity of nature; whether he was a vitalist or not; and whether he was a follower of Haller and of Bonnet,[107] as was Cuvier, or pronounced in favor of epigenesis.

We know that he was a firm believer in spontaneous generation, and that he conceived that it took place not only in the origination of his primeval germs or ebauches, but at all later periods down to the present day.

Yet Lamarck accepted Harvey's doctrine, published in 1651, that all living beings arose from germs or eggs.[108]

He must have known of Spallanzani's experiments, published in 1776, even if he had not read the writings of Treviranus (1802-1805), both of whom had experimentally disproved the theory of the spontaneous generation of animalcules in putrid infusions, showing that the lowest organisms develop only from germs.

The eighteenth century, though one of great intellectual activity, was, however, as regards cosmology, geology, general physiology or biology, a period of groping in the dim twilight, when the whole truth or even a part of it was beyond the reach of the greatest geniuses, and they could only seize on half-truths. Lamarck, both a practical botanist, systematic zooelogist, and synthetic philosopher, had done his best work before the rise of the experimental and inductive methods, when direct observation and experiments had begun to take the place of vague a priori thinking and reasoning, so that he labored under a disadvantage due largely to the age in which he lived.

Only the closing years of the century witnessed the rise of the experimental methods in physics and chemistry, owing to the brilliant work of Priestley and of Lavoisier. The foundations of general physiology had been laid by Haller,[109] those of embryology to a partial extent by Wolff,[110] Von Baer's work not appearing until 1829, the year in which Lamarck died.

Spontaneous Generation.—Lamarck's views on spontaneous generation are stated in his Recherches sur l'Organisation des Corps vivans (1802). He begins by referring to his statement in a previous work[111] that life may be suspended for a time and then go on again.

"Here I would remark it (life) can be produced (preparee) both by an organic act and by nature herself, without any act of this kind, in such a way that certain bodies without possessing life can be prepared to receive it, by an impression which indicates in these bodies the first traces of organization."

We will not enter upon an exposition of his views on the nature of sexual generation and of fecundation, the character of his vapeur subtile (aura vitalis) which he supposes to take an active part in the act of fertilization, because the notion is quite as objectionable as that of the vital force which he rejects. He goes on to say, however, that we cannot penetrate farther into the wonderful mystery of fecundation, but the opinions he expresses lead to the view that "nature herself imitates her procedures in fecundation in another state of things, without having need of the union or of the products of any preexistent organization."

He proceeds to observe that in the places where his aura vitalis, or subtle fluid, is very abundant, as in hot climates or in heated periods, and especially in humid places, life seems to originate and to multiply itself everywhere and with a singular rapidity.

"In this high temperature the higher animals and mankind develop and mature more rapidly, and diseases run their courses more swiftly; while on the other hand these conditions are more favorable to the simpler forms of life, for the reason that in them the orgasm and irritability are entirely dependent on external influences, and all plants are in the same case, because heat, moisture, and light complete the conditions necessary to their existence.

"Because heat is so advantageous to the simplest animals, let us examine whether there is not occasion for believing that it can itself form, with the concourse of favorable circumstances, the first germs of animal life.

"Nature necessarily forms generations, spontaneous or direct, at the extremity of each organic kingdom or where the simplest organic bodies occur."

This proposition, he allows, is so far removed from the view generally held, that it will be for a long time, and perhaps always, regarded as one of the errors of the human mind.

"I do not," he adds, "ask any one to accord it the least confidence on my word alone. But as surely it will happen, sooner or later, that men on the one hand independent of prejudices even the most widespread, and on the other profound observers of nature, may have a glimpse of this truth, I am very content that we should know that it is of the number of those views which, in spite of the prejudices of my age, I have thought it well to accept."

"Why," he asks, "should not heat and electricity act on certain matters under favorable conditions and circumstances?" He quotes Lavoisier as saying (Chemie, i., p. 202) "that God in creating light had spread over the world the principle of organization of feeling and of thought"; and Lamarck suggests that heat, "this mother of generation, this material soul of organized bodies," may be the chief one of the means which nature directly employs to produce in the appropriate kind of matter an act of arrangement of parts, of a primitive germ of organization, and consequently of vitalization analogous to sexual fecundation.

"Not only the direct formation of the simplest living beings could have taken place, as I shall attempt to demonstrate, but the following considerations prove that it is necessary that such germ-formations should be effected and be repeated under favorable conditions, without which the state of things which we observe could neither exist nor subsist."

His argument is that in the lower polyps (the Protozoa) there is no sexual reproduction, no eggs. But they perish (as he strangely thought, without apparently attempting to verify his belief) in the winter. How, he asks, can they reappear? Is it not more likely that these simple organisms are themselves regenerated? After much verbiage and repetition, he concludes:

"We may conceive that the simplest organisms can arise from a minute mass of substances which possess the following conditions—namely, which will have solid parts in a state nearest the fluid conditions, consequently having the greatest suppleness and only sufficient consistence to be susceptible of constituting the parts contained in it. Such is the condition of the most gelatinous organized bodies.

"Through such a mass of substances the subtile and expansive fluids spread, and, always in motion in the milieu environing it, unceasingly penetrate it and likewise dissipate it, arranging while traversing this mass the internal disposition of its parts, and rendering it suitable to continually absorb and to exhale the other environing fluids which are able to penetrate into its interior, and which are susceptible of being contained.

"These other fluids, which are water charged with dissolved (dissous) gas, or with other tenuous substances, the atmospheric air, which contains water, etc., I call containable fluids, to distinguish them from subtile fluids, such as caloric, electricity, etc., which no known bodies are believed to contain.

"The containable fluids absorbed by the small gelatinous mass in question remain almost motionless in its different parts, because the non-containable subtile fluids which always penetrate there do not permit it.

"In this way the uncontainable fluids at first mark out the first traces of the simplest organization, and consequently the containable fluids by their movements and their other influences develop it, and with time and all the favorable circumstances complete it."

This is certainly a sufficiently vague and unsatisfactory theory of spontaneous generation. This sort of guess-work and hypothetical reasoning is not entirely confined to Lamarck's time. Have we not, even a century later, examples among some of our biologists, and very eminent ones, of whole volumes of a priori theorizing and reasoning, with scarcely a single new fact to serve as a foundation? And yet this is an age of laboratories, of experimentations and of trained observers. The best of us indulge in far-fetched hypotheses, such as pangenesis, panmixia, the existence of determinants, and if this be so should we not excuse Lamarck, who gave so many years to close observation in systematic botany and zooelogy, for his flights into the empyrean of subtle fluids, containable and uncontainable, and for his invocation of an aura vitalis, at a time when the world of demonstrated facts in modern biology was undiscovered and its existence unsuspected?

The Preexistence of Germs and the Encasement Theory.—Lamarck did not believe in Bonnet's idea of the "preexistence of germs." He asks whether there is any foundation for the notion that germs "successively develop in generations, i.e. in the multiplication of individuals for the preservation of species," and says:

"I am not inclined to believe it if this preexistence is taken in a general sense; but in limiting it to individuals in which the unfertilized embryos or germs are formed before generation. I then believe that it has some foundation.—They say with good reason," he adds, "that every living being originates from an egg.... But the eggs being the envelope of every kind of germ, they preexist in the individuals which produce them, before fertilization has vivified them. The seeds of plants (which are vegetable eggs) actually exist in the ovaries of flowers before the fertilization of these ovaries."[112]

From whom did he get this idea that seeds or eggs are envelopes of all sorts of germs? It is not the "evolution" of a single germ, as, for example, an excessively minute but complete chick in the hen's egg, in the sense held by Bonnet. Who it was he does not mention. He evidently, however, had the Swiss biologist in mind, who held that all living things proceed from preexisting germs.[113]

Whatever may have been his views as to the germs in the egg before fertilization, we take it that he believed in the epigenetic development of the plant or animal after the seed or egg was once fertilized.[114]

Lamarck did not adopt the encasement theory of Swammerdam and of Heller. We find nothing in Lamarck's writings opposed to epigenesis. The following passage, which bears on this subject, is translated from his Memoires de Physique (p. 250), where he contrasts the growth of organic bodies with that of minerals.

"The body of this living being not having been formed by juxtaposition, as most mineral substances, that is to say, by the external and successive apposition of particles aggregated en masse by attraction, but essentially formed by generation, in its principle, it has then grown by intussusception—namely, by the introduction, the transportation, and the internal apposition of molecules borne along and deposited between its parts; whence have resulted the successive developments of parts which compose the body of this living individual, and from which afterwards also result the repairs which preserve it during a limited time."

Here, as elsewhere in his various works, Lamarck brings out the fact, for the first time stated, that all material things are either non-living or mineral, inorganic; or living, organic. A favorite phrase with him is living bodies, or, as we should say, organisms. He also is the first one to show that minerals increase by juxtaposition, while organisms grow by intussusception.

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