Robert Darwin


Robert Darwin

Dr Robert Waring Darwin, F.R.S. (30 May, 1766 - 13 November, 1848) was a Shrewsbury-based medical doctor, today best known as the father of the naturalist Charles Darwin.

Biography

Darwin was born in Lichfield in 1766, the son of Erasmus Darwin and his first wife Mary Howard. He was named after his uncle, Robert Waring Darwin of Elston (1724-1816), a bachelor. His mother died in 1770 and Mary Parker, the governess hired to look after him became his father's mistress and bore Erasmus two illegitimate daughters.

Darwin studied medicine at the University of Leiden, and took his MD from the University of Edinburgh in 1786, when he was only 20. In Edinburgh he studied under several leading scholars, including John Walker. He held his experience in Edinburgh in such high regard that he sent his son Charles to study there.

Family

On 18 April 1796 he married Susannah Wedgwood, daughter of the potter Josiah Wedgwood at in St Marylebone, Middlesex, and they had six children:

* Marianne Darwin (1798-1858), married Henry Parker (1788–1858) in 1824.
* Caroline Sarah Darwin (1800-1888) married her cousin Josiah Wedgwood III (grandson of Josiah Wedgwood)
* Susan Elizabeth Darwin (1803-1866)
* Erasmus Alvey Darwin (1804-1881)
* Charles Robert Darwin (1809-1882)
* Emily Catherine Darwin (1810-1866)

He was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society on 21 February 1788.

Advice

He cautioned his son against voyaging on the Beagle, but was persuaded otherwise. A large man of 6'2", he reportedly stopped weighing himself when he weighed 24 stone (336 lbs). He required his coachman to test the floorboards of houses he was visiting, and had to have special stone steps made for him to enter his carriage.

External links

* http://darwin.baruch.cuny.edu/biography/shrewsbury/rdarwin.html


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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Charles Robert Darwin — noun English natural scientist who formulated a theory of evolution by natural selection (1809 1882) • Syn: ↑Darwin, ↑Charles Darwin • Derivationally related forms: ↑Darwinian (for: ↑Darwin) • Instance Hypernyms: ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • Charles Robert Darwin — n. Charles Darwin (1809 1882), British scientist, originator of the theory of evolution through natural selection, author of The Descent of Man and Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection …   English contemporary dictionary

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