160 Charles Darwin Quotes You Must Read

160 Charles Darwin Quotes You Must Read

Here, we have compiled 160 famous and best quotes by Charles Darwin about evolution, survival, science, man, nature, and music.

Charles Robert Darwin (1809 –1882) was an English naturalist, geologist, and biologist who played a significant role in biological sciences. He is one of the most dominant and honorable personalities in the history of science.

Darwin is considered the master of evolution science due to his in-depth work in the field.  His theory that all species have descended from common ancestors is now a primary concept of biological sciences.

He proposed his Theory of Evolution in his book “On the Origin of Species” with ample evidence.  Also, he wrote down vastly about the survival and process of natural selection of species which is still widely accepted and appreciated.

Best Quotes of Charles Darwin

So, let’s take a look at these 160 best and knowledgeable quotes from Charles Darwin that will definitely amuse you.

  1. “But Geology carries the day: it is like the pleasure of gambling, speculating, on first arriving, what the rocks may be; I often mentally cry out 3 to 1 Tertiary against primitive, but the latter have hitherto won all the bets.” — Charles Darwin
  2. “If I had not been so great an invalid, I should not have done so much as I have accomplished.” — Charles Darwin
  3. “It is a fatal fault to reason whilst observing, though so necessary beforehand and so useful afterwards.” — Charles Darwin
  4. “One hand has surely worked throughout the universe.” — Charles Darwin
  5. “Nothing exists for itself alone, but only in relation to other forms of life.” — Charles Darwin
  6. “Often a cold shudder has run through me, and I have asked myself whether I may have not devoted myself to a fantasy.” — Charles Darwin
  7. “It is impossible to conceive of this immense and wonderful universe as the result of blind chance or necessity.” — Charles Darwin
  8. “May we not suspect that the vague but very real fears of children, which are quite independent of experience, are the inherited effects of real dangers and abject superstitions during ancient savage times?” — Charles Darwin
  9. “An American monkey, after getting drunk on brandy, would never touch it again, and thus is much wiser than most men.” — Charles Darwin
  10. “I agree with Agassiz that dogs possess something very like conscience.” — Charles Darwin
  11. “The most energetic workers I have encountered in my world travels are the vegetarian miners of Chile.” — Charles Darwin
  12. “The mystery of the beginning of all things is insoluble by us, and I for one must be content to remain an agnostic.” — Charles Darwin
  13. “The question of whether there exists a Creator and Ruler of the Universe has been answered in the affirmative by some of the highest intellects that have ever existed.” — Charles Darwin
  14. “It is like confessing to a murder.” — Charles Darwin
  15. “To my deep mortification, my father once said to me, “You care for nothing but shooting, dogs, and rat-catching, and you will be a disgrace to yourself and all your family.”“ — Charles Darwin
  16. “Not one great country can be named, from the polar regions in the north to New Zealand in the south, in which the aborigines do not tattoo themselves.” — Charles Darwin
  17. “Linnaeus and Cuvier have been my two gods, though in very different ways, but they were mere schoolboys to old Aristotle.” — Charles Darwin
  18. “It is easy to specify the individual objects of admiration in these grand scenes; but it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, astonishment, and devotion, which fill and elevate the mind.” — Charles Darwin
  19. “The age-old and noble thought of ‘I will lay down my life to save another,’ is nothing more than cowardice.” — Charles Darwin
  20. “Many kinds of monkeys have a strong taste for tea, coffee, and spirituous liqueurs.” — Charles Darwin
  21. “From the first dawn of life, all organic beings are found to resemble each other in descending degrees so that they can be classed in groups under groups. This classification is evidently not arbitrary like the grouping of stars in constellations.” — Charles Darwin
  22. “I am dying by inches, from not having anybody to talk to about insects.” — Charles Darwin
  23. “We are not here concerned with hopes or fears, only with truth as far as our reason permits us to discover it.” — Charles Darwin
  24. “Our faculties are more fitted to recognize the wonderful structure of a beetle than a Universe.” — Charles Darwin
  25. “I have no great quickness of apprehension or wit which is so remarkable in some clever men, for instance, Huxley.” — Charles Darwin
  26. “A republic cannot succeed, till it contains a certain body of men imbued with the principles of justice and honor.” — Charles Darwin
  27. “I have tried lately to read Shakespeare and found it so intolerably dull that it nauseated me.” — Charles Darwin
  28. “Even when we are quite alone, how often do we think with pleasure or pain of what others think of us – of their imagined approbation or disapprobation.” — Charles Darwin
  29. “He who understands baboons would do more towards metaphysics than Locke.” — Charles Darwin
  30. “I see no good reasons why the views given in this volume should shock the religious views of anyone.” — Charles Darwin
  31. “It is so easy to hide our ignorance under such expressions as the plan of creation or unity of design, etc., and to think that we give an explanation when we only restate a fact.” — Charles Darwin
  32. “Wherever the European had trod, death seemed to pursue the aboriginal.” — Charles Darwin
  33. “I can remember the very spot in the road, whilst in my carriage, when to my joy the solution occurred to me.” — Charles Darwin
  34. “I suppose you are two fathoms deep in mathematics, and if you are, then God help you. For so am I, only with this difference: I stick fast in the mud at the bottom, and there I shall remain.” — Charles Darwin
  35. “Such simple instincts as bees making a beehive could be sufficient to overthrow my whole theory.” — Charles Darwin
  36. “Progress has been much more general than retrogression.” — Charles Darwin
  37. “I worked on true Baconian principles, and without any theory collected facts.” — Charles Darwin
  38. “We can allow satellites, planets, suns, universe, nay whole systems of universes, to be governed by laws, but the smallest insect, we wish to be created at once by special act.” — Charles Darwin
  39. “I always make special notes about evidence that contradicts me: supportive evidence I can remember without trying.” — Charles Darwin
  40. “I am not the least afraid to die.” — Charles Darwin
  41. “It strikes me that all our knowledge about the structure of our Earth is very much like what an old hen would know of the hundred-acre field in a corner of which she is scratching.” — Charles Darwin
  42. “I have deeply regretted that I did not proceed far enough at least to understand something of the great leading principles of mathematics, for men thus endowed seem to have an extra sense.” — Charles Darwin
  43. “Delight itself, however, is a weak term to express the feelings of a naturalist.” — Charles Darwin
  44. “Hence, a traveler should be a botanist, for in all views plants form the chief embellishment.” — Charles Darwin
  45. “On the ordinary view of each species having been independently created, we gain no scientific explanation.” — Charles Darwin
  46. “We have happy days, remember good dinners.” — Charles Darwin
  47. “The willing horse is always overworked.” — Charles Darwin
  48. “If everyone were cast in the same mold, there would be no such thing as beauty.” — Charles Darwin
  49. “The highest possible stage in moral culture is when we recognize that we ought to control our thoughts.” — Charles Darwin
  50. “I am not apt to follow blindly the lead of other men.” — Charles Darwin
  51. “I have long discovered that geologists never read each other’s works and that the only object in writing a book is a proof of earnestness.” — Charles Darwin
  52. “Nothing can be more hopeless than to attempt to explain this similarity of pattern in members of the same class, by utility or by the doctrine of final causes.” — Charles Darwin
  53.  “Daily it is forced home on the mind of the biologist that nothing, not even the wind that blows, is so unstable as the level of the crust of this earth.” — Charles Darwin
  54. “Mathematics seems to endow one with something like a new sense.” — Charles Darwin
  55. “I cannot persuade myself that a beneficent and omnipotent God would have designedly created parasitic wasps with the express intention of their feeding within the living bodies of Caterpillars.” — Charles Darwin
  56.  “The very essence of instinct is that it’s followed independently of reason.” — Charles Darwin
  57. “Sympathy will have been increased through natural selection.” — Charles Darwin
  58. “A cell is a complex structure, with its investing membrane, nucleus, and nucleolus.” — Charles Darwin
  59. “To kill an error is as good a service as, and sometimes even better than, the establishing of a new truth or fact.” — Charles Darwin
  60. “Life is nearly over with me. I have taken no pains about my style of writing.” — Charles Darwin
  61. “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.” — Charles Darwin
  62. “Besides love and sympathy, animals exhibit other qualities connected with the social instincts which in us would be called moral.” — Charles Darwin
  63. “Animals, whom we have made our slaves, we do not like to consider our equal.” — Charles Darwin
  64. “Attention, if sudden and close, graduates into surprise; and this into astonishment; and this into stupefied amazement.” — Charles Darwin
  65. “Nothing is easier than to admit in words the truth of the universal struggle for life, or more difficult – at least I have found it so – than constantly to bear this conclusion in mind.” — Charles Darwin
  66. “It is mere rubbish thinking, at present, of origin of life; one might as well think of origin of matter.” — Charles Darwin
  67. “Englishmen rarely cry, except under the pressure of the acutest grief; whereas in some parts of the Continent the men shed tears much more readily and freely.” — Charles Darwin
  68. “My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts.” — Charles Darwin
  69. “The school as a means of education to me was simply a blank.” — Charles Darwin
  70. “As the sense of smell is so intimately connected with that of taste, it is not surprising that an excessively bad odor should excite wrenching or vomiting in some persons.” — Charles Darwin
  71.  “On your life, underestimating the proclivities of finches is likely to lead to great internal hemorrhaging.” — Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin Quotes About Evolution & Survival

  1. “Some call it evolution, and others call it God.” — Charles Darwin
  2. “The fact of evolution is the backbone of biology, and biology is thus in the peculiar position of being a science founded on an improved theory, is it then a science or faith?” — Charles Darwin
  3. “Man in his arrogance thinks himself a great work, worthy the interposition of a great deity. More humble and I believe true to consider him created from animals.” — Charles Darwin
  4. “Endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being evolved.” — Charles Darwin
  5. “The world will not be inherited by the strongest; it will be inherited by those most able to change.” — Charles Darwin
  6. “To suppose that the eye could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest possible degree.” — Charles Darwin
  7. “A grain in the balance will determine which individual shall live and which shall die – which variety or species shall increase in number, and which shall decrease, or finally become extinct.” — Charles Darwin
  8. “If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed, which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down. But I can find no such case.” — Charles Darwin
  9. “Although I am fully convinced of the truth of Evolution, I by no means expect to convince experienced naturalists. But I look with confidence to the future naturalists, who will be able to view both sides with impartiality.” — Charles Darwin
  10. “The formation of different languages and of distinct species and the proofs that both have been developed through a gradual process, are curiously parallel.” — Charles Darwin
  11.  “Seeing this gradation and diversity of structure in one small, intimately related group of birds, one might really fancy that from an original paucity of birds in this archipelago; one species had been taken and modified for different ends.” — Charles Darwin
  12. “It is a truly wonderful fact – the wonder of which we are apt to overlook from familiarity – that all animals and all plants throughout all time and space should be related to each other in group subordinate to group.” — Charles Darwin
  13.  “The main conclusion arrived at in this work; namely that man is descended from some lowly organized form, will, I regret to think, be highly distasteful to many persons. But there can hardly be a doubt that we are descended from barbarians.” — Charles Darwin
  14. “Natural selection acts solely by accumulating slight successive favorable variations; it can produce no great or sudden modification; it can act only by very short steps.” — Charles Darwin
  15. “As natural selection works solely by and for the good of each being, all corporeal and mental endowments will tend to progress toward perfection.” — Charles Darwin
  16. “It’s not the strongest, but the most adaptable that survive.” — Charles Darwin
  17. “It is not the most intellectual of the species that survives; it is not the strongest that survives, but the species that survives is the one that is able best to adapt and adjust to the changing environment in which it finds itself.” — Charles Darwin
  18. “I have called this principle, by which each slight variation, if useful, is preserved, by the term of Natural Selection.” — Charles Darwin
  19. “The most important factor in survival is neither intelligence nor strength but adaptability.” — Charles Darwin
  20.  “Multiply, vary, let the strongest live and the weakest die.” — Charles Darwin
  21. “The survival or preservation of certain favored words in the struggle for existence is natural selection.” — Charles Darwin
  22. “It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” — Charles Darwin
  23. “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change, that lives within the means available and works co-operatively against common threats.” — Charles Darwin
  24. “Only the fittest will survive.” — Charles Darwin
  25. “In the struggle for survival, the fittest win out at the expense of their rivals because they succeed in adapting themselves best to their environment.” — Charles Darwin
  26. “Intelligence is based on how efficient a species became at doing the things they need to survive.” — Charles Darwin
  27. “The most powerful natural species are those that adapt to environmental change without losing their fundamental identity which gives them their competitive advantage.” — Charles Darwin
  28. “In the survival of favored individuals and races, during the constantly-recurring struggle for existence, we see a powerful and ever-acting form of selection.” — Charles Darwin
  29. “There is a grandeur in this view of life, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful are being evolved.” — Charles Darwin
  30. “With mammals, the male appears to win the female much more through the law of battle than through the display of his charms.” — Charles Darwin
  31. “With highly civilized nations continued progress depends in a subordinate degree on natural selection; for such nations do not supplant and exterminate one another as do savage tribes.” — Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin Quotes About Science

  1. “Great is the power of steady misrepresentation; but the history of science shows that fortunately, this power does not long endure.” — Charles Darwin
  2. “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is those who know little, and not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science.” — Charles Darwin
  3. “Freedom of thought is best promoted by the gradual illumination of men’s minds which follows from the advance of science.” — Charles Darwin
  4. “Nothing before had ever made me thoroughly realize, though I had read various scientific books, that science consists in grouping facts so that general laws or conclusions may be drawn from them.” — Charles Darwin
  5. “A scientific man ought to have no wishes, no affections – a mere heart of stone.” — Charles Darwin
  6. “The noble science of Geology loses glory from the extreme imperfection of the record. The crust of the earth with its embedded remains must not be looked at as a well-filled museum, but as a poor collection made at hazard and at rare intervals.” — Charles Darwin
  7. “It has been a bitter mortification for me to digest the conclusion that the “race is for the strong” and that I shall probably do little more but be content to admire the strides others made in science.” — Charles Darwin
  8. “At no time am I a quick thinker or writer: whatever I have done in science has solely been by long pondering, patience, and industry.” — Charles Darwin
  9. “You will be astonished to find how the whole mental disposition of your children changes with advancing years. A young child and the same when nearly grown, sometimes differ almost as much as do a caterpillar and butterfly.” — Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin Quotes About Man and Nature

  1. “A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life.” — Charles Darwin
  2. “The normal food of man is vegetable.” — Charles Darwin
  3. “Building a better mousetrap merely results in smarter mice.” — Charles Darwin
  4. “Thus, we have given to man a pedigree of prodigious length, but not, it may be said, of noble quality.” — Charles Darwin
  5. “Sympathy beyond the confines of man, that is, humanity to the lower animals seems to be one of the latest moral acquisitions.” — Charles Darwin
  6. “A man’s friendships are one of the best measures of his worth.” — Charles Darwin
  7. “Man selects only for his own good: Nature only for that of the being which she tends.” — Charles Darwin
  8. “Man, scans with scrupulous care the character and pedigree of his horses, cattle, and dogs before he matches them; but when he comes to his own marriage he rarely, or never, takes any such care.” — Charles Darwin
  9. “The love for all living creatures is the most noble attribute of man.” — Charles Darwin
  10. “Sympathy for the lowest animals is one of the noblest virtues with which man is endowed.” — Charles Darwin
  11. “Much love much trial, but what an utter desert is life without love.” — Charles Darwin
  12.  “At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace the savage races throughout the world.” — Charles Darwin
  13. “I have been speculating last night what makes a man a discoverer of undiscovered things. As far as I can conjecture, the art consists in habitually searching for the causes and meaning of everything which occurs.” — Charles Darwin
  14. “The man that created the Theory of Evolution by natural selection was thrown out by his dad because he wanted him to be a doctor. GAWD, parents haven’t changed much.” — Charles Darwin
  15. “Every new body of discovery is mathematical in form because there is no other guidance we can have.” — Charles Darwin
  16. “What wretched doings come from the ardor of fame; the love of truth alone would never make one man attack another bitterly.” — Charles Darwin
  17. “Even people who aren’t geniuses can outthink the rest of mankind if they develop certain thinking habits.” — Charles Darwin
  18. “Worms have played a more important part in the history of the world than humans would at first suppose.” — Charles Darwin
  19. “A mathematician is a blind man in a dark room looking for a black cat which isn’t there.” — Charles Darwin
  20. “Man, himself cannot express love and humility by external signs, so plainly as does a dog, when with drooping ears, hanging lips, flexuous body, and wagging tail, he meets his beloved master.” — Charles Darwin
  21. “I hate a Barnacle as no man ever did before, not even a Sailor in a slow-sailing ship.” — Charles Darwin
  22. “It is a cursed evil to any man to become as absorbed in any subject as I am in mine.” — Charles Darwin
  23. “What can be more curious than that the hand of a man, formed for grasping, that of a mole for digging, the leg of the horse, the paddle of the porpoise, and the wing of the bat, should all be constructed on the same pattern?” — Charles Darwin
  24. “Blushing is the most peculiar and most human of all expressions. Monkeys redden from passion, but it would take an overwhelming amount of evidence to make us believe that any animal can blush.” — Charles Darwin
  25. “The limit of man’s knowledge in any subject possesses a high interest which is perhaps increased by its close neighborhood to the realms of imagination.” — Charles Darwin
  26. “I was a young man with uninformed ideas. I threw out queries, suggestions, wondering all the time over everything, and to my astonishment, the ideas took like wildfire. People made a religion of them.” — Charles Darwin
  27. “A novel according to my taste, does not come into the moderately good class unless it contains some person whom one can thoroughly love – and if a pretty woman, all the better.” — Charles Darwin
  28. “There is no fundamental difference between man and animals in their ability to feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery.” — Charles Darwin
  29. “Man, wonderful man, must collapse, into nature’s cauldron, he is no deity, he is no exception.” — Charles Darwin
  30. “Blushing is the most peculiar and most human of all expressions.” — Charles Darwin
  31. “A moral being is one who is capable of reflecting on his past actions and their motives – of approving of some and disapproving of others.” — Charles Darwin
  32. “Man tends to increase at a greater rate than his means of subsistence.” — Charles Darwin
  33. “I feel like an old warhorse at the sound of a trumpet when I read about the capturing of rare beetles.” — Charles Darwin
  34. “The man who walks with Henslow.” — Charles Darwin
  35. “In my simplicity, I remember wondering why every gentleman did not become an ornithologist.” — Charles Darwin
  36. “The more one thinks, the more one feels the hopeless immensity of man’s ignorance.” — Charles Darwin
  37. “Nature will tell you a direct lie if she can.” — Charles Darwin
  38. “Everything in nature is the result of fixed laws.” — Charles Darwin
  39. “What a book a devil’s chaplain might write on the clumsy, wasteful, blundering, low, and horribly cruel work of nature!” — Charles Darwin
  40. “There are several other sources of enjoyment in a long voyage, which are of a more reasonable nature. The map of the world ceases to be a blank; it becomes a picture full of the most varied and animated figures.” — Charles Darwin
  41. “We behold the face of nature bright with gladness.” — Charles Darwin
  42. “So great is the economy of Nature, that most flowers which are fertilized by crepuscular or nocturnal insects emit their odor chiefly or exclusively in the evening.” — Charles Darwin
  43. “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” — Charles Darwin
  44. “From the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of higher animals, directly follows.” — Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin Quotes About Music

  1. “If I had life to live over again, I would give my life to poetry, to music, to literature, and to art to make life richer and happier. In my youth, I steeled myself against them and thought them so much waste.” — Charles Darwin
  2. “When the sexes differ in beauty, in the power of singing, or in producing what I have called instrumental music, it is almost invariably the male which excels the female.” — Charles Darwin
  3. “If I had my life to live over again, I would have made a rule to read some poetry and listen to some music at least once every week.” — Charles Darwin
  4. “Music was known and understood before words were spoken.” — Charles Darwin
  5. “I conclude that the musical notes and rhythms were first acquired by the male or female progenitors of mankind for the sake of charming the opposite sex.” — Charles Darwin

What was Charles Darwin’s phrase?

The phrase Survival of the fittest from Darwin’s Theory of Evolution is considered his most dominant word. Its emphasis is that the process of natural selection allows only the species with the best adaptation to survive and reproduce.

What were Charles Darwin’s four main points?

The four main points of British naturalist Charles Darwin’s Theory of Evolution are:

  1. Individuals of similar species can’t be identical to each other, and there are always some variations among them.
  2. The traits pass from generation to generation.
  3. The birth rate of offspring is always higher than the number of surviving species.
  4. Only the surviving species of competition for resources becomes able to take part in reproduction.

What did Darwin say about survival of the fittest?

The term “Survival of the fittest” was published in the fifth edition of On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin. He mentioned that only species who adjust the best according to their environment could survive in the tough competition of resources.

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Written by Fariha Arif

Fariha Arif is a passionate blog writer and loves to write diversified content. She prefers to read novels, browsing the Internet, and traveling in her spare time.

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