The diplodocus in 1904
and in 2008, by Richard Carter
I didn't get where I am today without spending wet Bank Holiday afternoons in London at the Natural History Museum looking at the dinosaurs; so that's where we went.
It was rather more crowded than it was in 1904 - we queued for 10 minutes until we reached a sign. "You are 45 minutes from the dinosaurs", it said, so we went to the Darwin exhibition instead.
Darwin changed the world with an astonishing idea
which he hugged largely to himself for over 20 years until the same idea was had by Alfred Russel Wallace who wrote it all up in a neat essay and sent it to... Charles Darwin. Oops.
One idea, two authors. The reason we now remember name of Darwin is because Darwin was
The reason Darwin had sat on his idea for so long seems to have been largely because he didn't want to upset his wife. The ironic thing is: he nearly didn't have a wife, for the most memorable item in the exhibition is his notes on the pros and cons of marriage and you can see for yourself it was close run thing.
Which point was it, do you suppose, decided him in the end?
In Victorian times most people refused to believe that a species could change, despite the clear evidence of their own eyes. Even now it can be hard to believe what's in plain sight: for instance if you look closely at the two pictures you'll notice that at some time in the last 100 years the diplodocus has stirred, stood up and lifted its tail...