Much has been made of the wives of the important men in history. Some of those wives were very important in their own right, or even more so than their husbands. It seems that one such lady has somehow slipped through the cracks of history, though.
Recently, a journal called International Microbiology published a gem of an article that describes the life of Emma Darwin, wife of Charles Darwin. While her husband’s landmark book, The Origin of Species, has been read by many modern biologists, few know the story of his wife and greatest companion.
One might assume that this is because she was a wholly uninteresting person, but then one would be wrong! As it turns out, where Charles was the brilliant but frail husband, Emma was the caring but principled wife. Their inherent disagreement about the nature of God and creation had a great impact on when and how the Father of Evolution chose to bear his brainchild.
I won’t say any more for fear of spoiling an engagingly written article by Mercè Piqueras, Associate Editor of the journal, but believe me when I say I’ve read a lot of biology articles and this one deserves some high honors for its quality.
You can find the article in this link [More about Mrs. Darwin than Mr. Darwin]. It is a PDF that you will want to download directly.
Be you historian or scientist, I’d love to discuss this article with you on Twitter. If you’re shy, leave a comment!
[via @MicrobeWorld, the Twitter account for the American Society for Microbiology’s public outreach program][Emma Darwin Portrait from Wikimedia Commons]