The First American Edition of This Important Book
DARWIN, Charles. On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. Or the preservation of favoured races in the struggle for life. New York: D. Appleton and Company , 1860.
First American edition, third issue. "Revised Edition" on title-page and three quotations to verso of half-title. Octavo (7 11/16 x 4 7/8 inches; 196 x 125 mm). [1]-432 pp. With folding chart.

Original pebbled brown cloth with covers decoratively stamped in blind. Spine lettered in gilt. Green-coated endpapers. A very slight bit of fraying to top and bottom of the spine. Spine lightly sunned. Previous owner's pencil signature on front free endpaper. And an old ink gift inscription dated 1895 on front flyleaf. Some intermittent light foxing. Overall a very good unrestored copy.

One of the most influential scientific works of the nineteenth century, On the Origin of Species was (and still is) one of the most controversial. The book caused an uproar immediately upon its publication, and many early copies were burned in protest of its authorís ideas. In it "Darwin not only drew an entirely new picture of the workings of organic nature; he revolutionized our methods of thinking and our outlook on the natural order of things. The recognition that constant change is the order of the universe had been finally established and a vast step forward in the uniformity of nature had been taken" (Printing and the Mind of Man).

Although published the same year as the second English edition, the text of the first American edition (with the two stereo reprints of the same year) is identical to the first English edition (Freeman 373), with the whale-bear story surviving intact.

Freeman 376 ("the most important biological book ever written"). Grolier/Horblit 23b ("the most influential scientific work of the nineteenth century"); Printing and the Mind of Man 344b (first edition).

Freeman, Darwin, 379. Printing and the Mind of Man 344.

HBS # 68677 $6,000

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