The Secrets of Darwin’s Greenhouse

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Despite the controversy, evolution was widely accepted by many naturalists within a few years of the Origin’s appearance. An important reason for this rapid triumph was Darwin’s botanical works. Seen through evolutionary eyes, plants proved to be mobile, carnivorous, sensitive – even crafty. 

As Darwin “exalted” his favourite flowers, the orchids, he also narrowed the once-unimaginably wide gap between plants and animals, thus making it easier for his readers to imaginatively bridge the much smaller distance between humans and apes.

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Jim Endersby, Gresham Visiting Professor of the History of Science. 

Professor Jim Endersby

Visiting Professor of the History of Science

Jim Endersby is Professor of the History of Science at the University of Sussex.

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