The Charles Darwin Sculpture Garden

While in Cambridge, England earlier this fall I visited Christ’s College. When I visit Cambridge University this is one of my stops since it is where my 11th great grandfather Richard Barnard went to school.

Darwin Sculpture, Cambridge, England, Alan SmithOne of the places that I enjoyed at Christ’s College was The Darwin Sculpture Garden. Charles Darwin was a student at Christ’s College in the mid 1800’s a little more than 200 years later than Barnard.

Darwin Sculpture, Cambridge, England, Alan SmithThe sculpture is of Darwin when he was 22 years old in 1831 during his last year at Christ’s College and shortly before his famous voyage on the Beagle.

The sculpture is by Anthony Smith who was a student at Christ’s College in the early 2000’s.

Darwin Sculpture, Cambridge, England, Alan SmithDarwin is holding a book in his right hand and there is a stack of books on the bench beside him. You can see the book in his hand in the previous picture. Can you guess which books he might have with him?

Darwin Sculpture, Cambridge, England, Alan SmithThe book in Darwin’s hand is Personal Narrative by Alexander von Humboldt. This book inspired his travels in search of scientific knowledge.

There are three books in the stack on the bench which he would have read at this time. Natural Theology by William Paley is a book I have in my library. Preliminary Discourse on Natural Philosophy by John Herschel and Illustrations of British Entomology would have also inspired Darwin’s research of nature.

If you look closely you will see a Brachinus crepitans which represents his collection of beetles.

Darwin Sculpture, Cambridge, England, Alan Smith

Here we have one last look at the sculpture. To me Darwin is closely observing his surroundings and trying to figure out how everything works together.

I have read Darwin’s books and he made some great observations of the natural world around him.

Steven

 

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