Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Darwinian Theory Of Evolution

Theory proposed by Charles Darwin in 1859 that argues, in brief, that
(1) the number of individuals in a species remains more or less constant;
(2) many more individuals are born than can ever survive to reproduce;
(3) there is high mortality before reproductive age;
(4) there is variation in nature, and some of that variation is heritable;
(5) those who survive to reproduce are the better adapted;
(6) only the better adapted pass on heritable traits to the next generation;
(7) this process may be called natural selection;
(8) over a long period, natural selection gives rise to new forms of life, the origin of species.

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