On the flora of Australia, its origin, affinities, and distribution; being an introductory essay to the Flora of Tasmania. Offprint from The Botany of the Antarctic Voyage of H. M. Discovery Ships ‘Erebus’ and ‘Terror’, Vol. III (Flora Tasmaniae), part I (June, 1859). London: Lowell Reeve, 1859.
The first important botanical work by a supporter of Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection. Hooker, a botanist and plant geographer, had been a close friend of Darwin for many years, and was aware of Darwin’s gradual progression toward a belief in the mutability of species, yet he did not begin fully to support Darwin’s views until shortly after the publication of the Origin of Species (1859). In his introduction to Flora Tasmaniae, the third volume of his massive Botany of the Antarctic Voyage of H. M. Discovery Ships ‘Erebus’ and ‘Terror’, Hooker publicly acknowledged his acceptance of Darwinian theory, which had come about “solely and entirely from an independent study of the plants themselves” (letter to W. H. Harvey, c. 1860). (This is a kind of offprint of a portion of No. 7448; it is sometimes viewed as a separate work.)
Subjects: BOTANY, Biogeography, Biogeography › Phytogeography, COUNTRIES, CONTINENTS AND REGIONS › Australia, EVOLUTION, VOYAGES & Travels by Physicians, Surgeons & Scientists