'Hurrah for the missing link!': A history of apes, ancestors and a crucial piece of evidence

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningfagfællebedømt

In the nineteenth century the idea of a ‘missing link’ connecting humans with the rest of the animal kingdom was eagerly embraced by professional scientists and popularizers. After the publication of Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species in 1859, many tied the idea and subsequent search for a crucial piece of evidence to Darwin and his formulation of the theory of evolution by natural selection. This article demonstrates that the expression was widely used and that the framework for discussions about human’s relation to the apes and gaps in the fossil record were well in place and widely debated long before Origin of Species became the standard reference for discussing human evolution. In the second half of the century the missing link gradually became the ultimate prize in palaeoanthropology and grew into one of the most powerful, celebrated and criticized icons of human evolution.
TidsskriftNotes and Records of the Royal Society of London
Udgave nummer1
Sider (fra-til)83-98
StatusUdgivet - 2011
Eksternt udgivetJa

ID: 160580339