A Cultural History of Heredity by Hans-Jorg Rheinberger, Peter McLaughlin, Staffan

By Hans-Jorg Rheinberger, Peter McLaughlin, Staffan Muller-Wille

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43 Marc J. Ratcliff Another problem relates to fixity, history and genealogy. First, in relation to species and classifications, the status of time was at stake in the debates on varieties and species. A fixed species is conceived as being out of time, while an organism suddenly appearing raises the question of time and of a constancy of species. This issue was much discussed by the classical botanists such as John Ray, Robert Morison, Jean Marchant and Linnaeus, and Duchesne did not evade it. Second, time is also related to history, and the use Linnaeus, and Duchesne made of the history of botanical species was new in contrast to the descriptive tradition of botany.

See also Hoffheimer (1982). , p. 310. ” 35 Varieties occurring by chance could be perpetuated through cultivation, just as particular traits are preserved in animals by systematically selecting for them. Over time, cultivation could cause varieties to solidify into a separate species that would be stable enough to perpetuate itself. In his most speculative mode, Maupertuis suggested that naturalists might use the collections of animals in menageries to explore heredity through hybridization, even to the point of crossing animals that would never mate in nature.

Vénus physique. edited by Patrick Tort. Paris: Aubier Montaigne. Mazzolini, Renato and Shirley Roe. 1986. Science against the unbelievers: the correspondence of Bonnet and Needham, 1760-1780. Oxford: The Voltaire Foundation. Needham, John Turberville. 1748. ” Philosophical Transactions 45:615–666. Panckoucke, Charles Joseph. 1761. De l’homme, et de la reproduction des différens individus. Ouvrage qui peut servir d’introduction & de défense à l’Histoire naturelle des animaux par m. de Buffon. Paris.

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