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Darlington, Cyril Dean (1903–1981), cytogeneticist and evolutionist, was born on 19 December 1903 in Chorley, Lancashire, the younger son (there were no daughters) of William Henry Robertson Darlington (1866–1943), a schoolmaster, and his wife, Ellen Frankland (b. 1874). He attended Heathside elementary school...

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Darwin, Charles Robert (1809–1882), naturalist, geologist, and originator of the theory of natural selection, was born on 12 February 1809 at The Mount, Shrewsbury, the fifth child and second son of Robert Waring Darwin (1766–1848), Shrewsbury's principal physician, and Susannah Wedgwood (1765–1817). His sisters were ...

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Charles Robert Darwin (1809–1882) by John Collier, 1881 by permission of the Linnean Society of London

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Mitchison, (John) Murdoch (1922–2011), zoologist and cell biologist, was born at Cherwell, Linton Road, Oxford, on 11 June 1922, the third of four sons and third of seven children (two of whom died in childhood) of Gilbert Richard (Dick) Mitchison (1890–1970), barrister, and later Labour MP for ...

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Romanes, George John [pseuds. Physicus, Metaphysicus] (1848–1894), evolutionary biologist, was born in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, on 20 May 1848, the third son of the Revd George Romanes and Isabella Gair Smith. His father, who taught Greek at the small university in ...

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George John Romanes (1848–1894) by Elliott & Fry, 1891 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Wallace, Alfred Russel (1823–1913), naturalist, evolutionary theorist, and social critic, was born on 8 January 1823, at Kensington Cottage, Usk, Monmouthshire, the third of four sons and eighth of the nine children of Thomas Vere Wallace and Mary Anne Greenell. Early biographical treatments give the year of his birth as 1822 through an oversight on ...

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Alfred Russel Wallace (1823–1913) by Reginald Haines, c. 1909 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Weldon, Walter Frank Raphael (1860–1906), zoologist and biometrician, was born on 15 March 1860, at Highgate, Middlesex, the second child of the journalist and industrial chemist Walter Weldon (1832–1885) and his wife, Anne Cotton (d. 1881). His father's wealth came from his patents of the manganese regeneration process and the magnesia chlorine process. The family moved so frequently that ...

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Walter Frank Raphael Weldon (1860–1906) by unknown photographer The College Art Collections, University of London; photograph National Portrait Gallery, London