ARTICLE: Seaside natural history and divinity: a science-inclined Scottish cleric’s avoidance of evolution (1860–1868)

New in Archives of Natural History:

Seaside natural history and divinity: a science-inclined Scottish cleric’s avoidance of evolution (1860–1868)

P.G. Moore

Abstract The Reverend Robert William Fraser (1810–1876), a Presbyterian minister in Edinburgh, published on religious, historical and scientific (physical science, natural history) themes. His natural history titles Ebb and flow (1860), Seaside divinity (1861) and The seaside naturalist (1868) were aimed at the popular market. Appearing in the years immediately after Darwin’s On the origin of species (1859), the tone of Fraser’s books sheds light on the response of a popular, science-inclined clergyman in Scotland’s Enlightenment capital to the idea of evolution. His avoidance of the issue of evolution by natural selection is evident but was not shared by all contemporary clerics.

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