Darwin’s university lifestyle uncovered

UK“Two hundred years after Charles Darwin’s birth, historians have gained new insight into his days as a student at Cambridge after unearthing bills that record intimate details of how he spent his money. The revolutionary scientist was, it would appear, ahead of his time in his willingness to pay extra to supplement his daily intake of vegetables. And, as one would expect of a 19th-century gentleman, he was happy to pay others to carry out menial tasks for him, such as stoking his fire and polishing his shoes. But there is little to suggest that he bought many books, or that he did much else to further his studies. The evolutionist famously spent little of his time studying or in lectures, preferring to shoot, ride and collect beetles …” (more)

[Caroline Davies, Observer, 22 March]

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