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Darwin's 200th anniversary

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Maria Mac
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#41 Post by Maria Mac » November 16th, 2008, 11:15 pm

Latest post of the previous page:

peneasy wrote:If this 10£ banknote depicting Darwin will be really printed I foreshadow a fair amount of notes will be collected by Humanists and Atheists Worldwide. Quite a business for HM's Mint! :thumbsup:


Charles Darwin has been on our £10 banknotes for eight years. He replaced Charles Dickens in 2000. :smile:



Here's one I collected a few years ago. Spot the amendment (it wasn't me!):

Image

And here's the other side:

Image

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Alan C.
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#42 Post by Alan C. » November 16th, 2008, 11:26 pm

Charles Darwin has been on our £10 banknotes for eight years. He replaced Charles Dickens in 2000.
Is that the English notes Maria? or the Scottish ones? I never take much notice of who's picture is on them, I never have them long enough.
Abstinence Makes the Church Grow Fondlers.

Gottard
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#43 Post by Gottard » November 17th, 2008, 11:13 am

Charles Darwin has been on our £10 banknotes for eight years. He replaced Charles Dickens in 2000.

I'm a bit confused Maria! Why then all this fuss about a new banknote? I assume it will be a new edition of the same £10 banknote?!
Besides, I wonder if the caption "in god we trust" will appear in the Darwin note; if that will be the case then ....hem, (censored comment) :sad2:
The only thing I fear of death is regret if I couldn’t complete my learning experience

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Alan H
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#44 Post by Alan H » November 17th, 2008, 12:05 pm

I suspect the older notes with Darwin don't have the hummingbird, which is what all the fuss is about.

We generally don't see many Bank of England notes in Scotland: they are usually the Royal Bank of Scotland, the Bank of Scotland and the Clydesdale Bank notes. Just why we need four banks all providing (essentially) exactly the same service, I'll never understand. B of E notes are accepted without question in Scotland, but there can be problems with Scottish notes in England.

Does anyone actually spend any time looking at what's on their notes (apart from the denomination!)?
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Alan C.
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#45 Post by Alan C. » November 17th, 2008, 2:17 pm

Alan H
Does anyone actually spend any time looking at what's on their notes (apart from the denomination!)?
You just prompted me to have a peek, I have a Clydesdale £5 with Robbie Burns on the front, and a Timorous wee beastie on the reverse, I have a bank of England £10 with HRH on the front, and lo and behold! Darwin and the Hummingbird on the reverse, so they are already in circulation.
I have a bank of Scotland £10 Sir Walter Scott on the front, and a distillery on the reverse :smile:
And I have two Royal Bank of Scotland £20 with Lord Ilay on the front, and Brodick castle on the reverse.
Some of the new Scottish fivers are very colourful, but I can't tell you what's depicted on them, cos I aint got one to look at.
Abstinence Makes the Church Grow Fondlers.

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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#46 Post by Gottard » November 17th, 2008, 4:56 pm

Both Alans,
in fact I remember to have touched and spent the £10 with Darwin and hummingb. years ago but, prudently, I thought I did it in my former life
( :hilarity:).
Last time I flew to London from Edinburgh I spent the -then- only different £5 note without problems.
By covering economic facts in Europe I read today that the UK, may be, perhaps, who knows, might think that joining the Euro could not be a bad idea given the crisis we are going through!
Any Scottish reactions? :dance:
The only thing I fear of death is regret if I couldn’t complete my learning experience

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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#47 Post by RichardS » November 20th, 2008, 10:28 am

Regarding the feeding of a religion into a child. It is no use ranting about religious parents doing this because they have no choice. If they truly believe then it follows that they must pass their belief on to their children. It is even dafter to say that we must allow people to believe so long as they do not indoctrinate their children. It just can't happen. the best one can hope for is that religious parents will explain that other people have different beliefs or no religion at all but even then they are likely to say that their particular version is the only true one.
Going back to Darwin. I too find "Darwin the man" fascinating and a particular aspect of this is his relationship with Alfred Russel Wallace. They came from such different backgrounds yet seem to have had great respect for each other and, as far as I can tell, behaved with such honour that they are an example to some other scientists who have cheated, lied and bent the truth in order to get the credit. Did you know that Darwin was instrumental in getting Gladstone to give Wallace a pension?
RichardS

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jaywhat
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#48 Post by jaywhat » December 3rd, 2008, 6:09 am

This is in the BHA Bulletin posted by Alan - but thought it would stick out a bit more in a Darwin thread - but not sure why its in Social Club

A happy humanist holiday?
Watford Area Humanists are petitioning the Prime Minister to make Darwin Day (12th February) a UK Bank Holiday. Petition creator Ian Roberts says, “Charles Darwin was a truly remarkable scientist. His work on evolution deserves to be honoured in some way. Making his birthday (12th February) a bank holiday would be a simple way of doing this.” To sign the petition, visit http://petitions.number10.gov.uk/Darwins-day/

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Paolo
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#49 Post by Paolo » December 3rd, 2008, 7:34 am

Much as I like the idea of Darwin day being a Bank Holiday, it doesn't fill the gap between the August BH and Christmas, which is probably the are that will be most likely to get a BH allocated due to the long stretch without one. The date of publication of the Origin of Species (24th November) would be a better timed. Let's call it "Evolution Day".

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Alan H
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#50 Post by Alan H » December 8th, 2008, 12:37 am

Found this from the religious 'think tank', Theos:
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Theos think tank - News -> 8 out of 10 Britons unaware of Darwin anniversary
http://www.theosthinktank.co.uk/8_out_o ... efPageID=5
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8 out of 10 Britons unaware of Darwin anniversary

Only 21% of people know that 2009 is Darwin's anniversary year, according to a new poll published by Theos today, on the 149th anniversary of the publication of the Origin of Species.

2009 will see a double Darwin anniversary: 12 February marks the 200th anniversary of Darwin's birth. On 24 November, the 150th anniversary of the publication of the Origin of Species will be commemorated.

The finding of the ComRes poll coincides with the unveiling by Theos and the Faraday Institute on Science and Religion of a programme of major events and publications to 'rescue' Darwin from the crossfire of a philosophical battle in which he had little personal interest.

On 12 May, there will be a high profile debate in Westminster Abbey (where Darwin is buried) chaired by the BBC's John Humphrys. This will explore the compatibility of belief in God and Darwinian evolution. The panellists will include Lord Robert Winston, Professor Steve Jones, Dr Denis Alexander, and Professor Nancy Rothwell.

This debate will draw on the findings of two major new research projects. In February, Theos will publish the findings of a major quantitative study conducted by polling company ComRes. This will provide, for the first time, comprehensive data about the extent and nature of evolutionary and non-evolutionary opinion in the UK and its relationship to atheistic and religious beliefs.

In addition to the above, an independent qualitative research project conducted by ESRO, a research consultancy, will be published. This research seeks to interview leading proponents of creationism and intelligent design in the UK, in order to better understand the underlying discourses and ideas which form the foundations of the theories.

Drawing on all of this new research, Theos will be publishing a major report on the compatibility of Christianity and Darwinian evolution. SPCK will also be publishing a book by Theos Director of Studies Nick Spencer, entitled Darwin and God.

Commenting on the plans for 2009, Director of Theos Paul Woolley said:

"Towards the end of his life Charles Darwin wrote, 'It seems to me absurd to doubt that a man may be an ardent Theist and an evolutionist.' Unfortunately, too many people today disagree with him.

"Our project aims to 'rescue' his original position and ensure that next year Darwin is recognised as a supremely gifted scientist rather than a theologian or anti-theologian."

To see the results of the poll in full, click here.

[Retrieved: Mon Dec 08 2008 00:36:28 GMT+0000 (GMT Standard Time)]

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Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#51 Post by jaywhat » December 8th, 2008, 11:51 am

Anything from the theo think tank makes me cringe - like the result of a so-called poll they conducted which showed that over 35% of adults believe that Mary really was a virgin - what a load of bollocks.

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Paolo
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#52 Post by Paolo » December 8th, 2008, 12:15 pm

To be honest I think that 21% of people realising that 2009 is Darwin's bicentenary is pretty good. The event hasn't happened yet, the bombardment by the media is only just getting going - I hope another poll is carried out in 2010. I expect the number would have increased significantly!

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Alan H
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#53 Post by Alan H » December 8th, 2008, 1:36 pm

Paolo wrote:To be honest I think that 21% of people realising that 2009 is Darwin's bicentenary is pretty good.
I agree, particularly when you consider this statistic from the religious think tank, Theos:
only 12% of the population, and only 7% of young adults, had a reasonably comprehensive understanding of the Nativity.


I used this in a comment on The Scotsman's website this morning:
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Christmas still seen as religious - The Scotsman
http://thescotsman.scotsman.com/uk?arti ... 85#3512477
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Christmas still seen as religious

Published Date: 08 December 2008
NEARLY three-quarters of Britons believe the birth of Jesus remains a "significant" part of our culture, and more than half (57 per cent) plan to celebrate Christmas as a religious festival.
Results of a telephone poll for the theology think-tank Theos released today say 66 per cent of Scots will celebrate Christmas in that way.

1
zeno,
www.thinkhumanism.com 08/12/2008 00:45:14
However, another survey from Theos (http://tinyurl.com/5a2nmp), said that "only 12% of the population, and only 7% of young adults, had a reasonably comprehensive understanding of the Nativity".

How are the 57% going to celebrate something they know little about? Surely the truth is many follow tradition, not religion?
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2
Maximus,
Roberton 08/12/2008 12:06:49
In the grand scheme of things we know very little about a great many things ... and yet we are part of these things.

We get to know about religion, say, by participating in it, reading about it, conversing with those who practice it and so on. Speaking as a Catholic of some 40 years of age, I can hosently say that I'm only just beginning to understand the significance of Advent and Nativity.
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3
zeno,
www.thinkhumanism.com 08/12/2008 13:04:43
Maximus: I don't think this was anything to do with understanding the significance (if any) of the nativity, but just about basic facts of it. Of course, religions do little to dispel the saccharine myths that have been built up around the alleged birth of Jesus.

[Retrieved: Mon Dec 08 2008 13:35:42 GMT+0000 (GMT Standard Time)]

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Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

Maria Mac
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#54 Post by Maria Mac » December 31st, 2008, 1:51 pm

Just to draw attention to my post on our Darwin Quiz viewtopic.php?f=6&t=2622

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Alan H
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#55 Post by Alan H » January 3rd, 2009, 11:58 am

Some interesting articles in The Times today:
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Britain’s Galápagos offers insight into evolutionary ideas - Times Online
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/u ... 435036.ece
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Britain’s Galápagos offers insight into evolutionary ideas
Charles Darwin

Celebrations will mark the bicentenary of Darwin's birth and the 150th anniversary of On the Origin of Species
Mark Henderson, Science Editor

The living laboratory where Charles Darwin developed much of his evolutionary thinking, described by scientists as “Britain’s Galápagos”, is to reopen to the public next month to mark the bicentenary of the great biologist’s birth.

A £900,000 revamp of Down House, the Darwin family home near Orpington, Kent, will give visitors fresh insights into the story of evolution, with a new exhibition and the opportunity to be guided around its grounds by leading intellectuals.

Sir David Attenborough, Lord Bragg and the evolutionary biologist Steve Jones, are among the narrators of a multimedia tour of the gardens and fields around Down House, which will set out on handheld monitors their role as a natural laboratory for Darwin’s science. Professor Jones, of University College London, described the site as “Britain’s Galápagos”, because the observations that Darwin made there were as important to his intellectual development as those that he made during the voyage of HMS Beagle to South America.

Down House and its surrounding countryside have also been nominated by the Government as a World Heritage Site, to mark the bicentenary of Darwin’s birth and the 150th anniversary of his seminal work, On the Origin of Species, which both fall this year.
Times Archive

* Darwin and Downe House

* Letter: Darwin's home at Downe

* Charles Darwin's home opened to the public

Related Links

* Mockingbird goes back to its origins

* Darwinian thinking deepens religious faith

The theory of evolution by natural selection, which Darwin set out in On the Origin of Species, is the foundation of all modern biology. It holds that organisms evolve by means of random mutations, which are then preserved if they are beneficial and help survival and breeding. When the house and its grounds reopen on February 13, the day after the 200th anniversary of Darwin’s birth, parts of the original manuscript will be displayed for the first time, with pages from his Beagle notebooks. A mock-up of the cabin that he occupied on board the ship is also being installed.

The multimedia garden tour aims to highlight the countryside setting’s critical role in Darwin’s thinking. “Several years of work have gone into recreating the garden as it was in Darwin’s time, and now we can show it off with handheld video guides,” said Jenny Cousins, of English Heritage, which owns Down House. “It’s important because he really did use it as a living laboratory. We can show off the seasonality of the gardens – a particular plant might not be flowering when you visit as it’s out of season, and we can offer a guided tour with experts such as David Attenborough, Melvyn Bragg and Steve Jones.”

Darwin moved with his family to Down House in 1842, partly to escape Central London, but also because its surroundings offered great opportunities for him to study the natural world and refine his theories about its development. His experiments in the surrounding countryside included one of the first detailed ecological surveys, in which he catalogued all 142 species he found in the nearby Great Puckland meadow. He used the gardens to investigate plant breeding, and he did much of his thinking while strolling around a path called the Sandwalk.

Bob Bloomfield, of the Natural History Museum, who is coordinating a programme of bicentennial celebrations called Darwin 200, said: “Darwin’s ideas were certainly among the greatest ideas of the 19th century, and some people would argue even greater than that. Down House is the environment where they were developed and reinforced: it wasn’t just a home, it was a laboratory and workplace.”

[Retrieved: Sat Jan 03 2009 11:53:34 GMT+0000 (GMT Standard Time)]

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Mockingbird goes back to its origins in honour of Charles Darwin - Times Online
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/e ... 434999.ece
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Mockingbird goes back to its origins in honour of Charles Darwin
The variations Darwin observed in mockingbirds helped to form his theory

The variations Darwin observed in mockingbirds helped to form his theory
Lewis Smith

The bird that prompted Charles Darwin to start developing his theory of evolution is to be returned to its native island to help to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the naturalist’s birth.

Floreana mockingbirds played a pivotal role in guiding Darwin’s thoughts after he noticed slight differences between them and the mockingbirds living on other islands in the Galápagos.

Within 50 years of his visit to the Galápagos in HMS Beagle, however, the Floreana mockingbird had been wiped out on Floreana island, known to Darwin as Charles island.

This year conservationists intend to bring back the species to Floreana island to live and breed there for the first time in more than 130 years.
Times Archive

* Darwin and Downe House

* Letter: Darwin's home at Downe

* Charles Darwin's home opened to the public

Related Links

* Down House offers insight into evolution

* Darwinian thinking deepens religious faith

When Darwin reached the Galápagos in 1835 and collected specimens of mockingbirds, or mocking-thrushes as he often called them, from Floreana he was struck by the small differences from those that he had taken from the island of San Cristóbal, 50 miles away.

In his account of the expedition to South America, The Voyage of the Beagle, he recalled his surprise that animals on nearby islands displayed such variation.

“My attention was first thoroughly aroused, by comparing together the numerous specimens, shot by myself and several other parties on board, of the mocking-thrushes, when, to my astonishment, I discovered that all those from Charles Island [now Floreana] belonged to one species (Mimus trifasciatus); all from Albemarle [now Isabela] Island to M. parvulus; and all from James [now Santiago] and Chatham [now San Cristóbal] Islands belonged to M. melanotis.”

Floreana mockingbirds were common on the island when Darwin visited but quickly died out in the face of an onslaught from animals introduced from Europe.

Rats, which attacked them and ate the eggs, and goats, which destroyed the prickly pear cactus the birds depended on, were the worst but cats, donkeys and pigs also took a toll.

The species survives today only because it managed to find refuge on two tiny isles, Gardner-by-Floreana and Champion, which lie within sight of Floreana island, but with fewer than 150 birds alive it is classified as critically endangered.

Stock for the reintroduction project will be taken from the populations on the tiny isles. Five females and five males are expected to be captured this spring as fledgelings and transported to Floreana, where they will form the basis of a breeding population.

Once the birds have adapted to their new home, and the surroundings have been cleared of invasive species, they will be released into the wild. It is hoped that the first releases can take place this year. Once the release sites have been identified the rats and other invasive animals will be eradicated. At the same time large areas of invasive plants will be removed from Floreana and replaced with prickly pear cactus and other native species to create the conditions that the mockingbirds need to survive and thrive on the sand.

The release programme will be carried out by conservationists from Durrell, set up by the naturalist and author Gerald Durrell 50 years ago and formerly known as Jersey Zoo. They will work with conservationists from the Charles Darwin Foundation, Galápagos National Park, Zurich University, and the University of Missouri.

Scientists at Durrell have extensive experience in helping rare island birds.

Among those they have saved are the pink pigeon and the Mauritius kestrel.

Professor John Fa, of Durrell, said of the mockingbird: “It is an iconic species for our understanding of evolution. It was the bird that made Darwin think about the origin of species.”

Glyn Young, a researcher for the project, added: “There is a popular view that the young Darwin, preparing his new specimens, held the mockers [mockingbirds] up together and a light went on in his head! I believe that this was pretty close to the truth.”

200 years on

Until April 19 The Natural History Museum in London offers the single largest exhibition dedicated to Darwin. Darwin 200 contains artefacts and artwork that are rare, revealing and in many cases had never before been shown publicly.

February 5 Penguin to rerelease Darwin’s seminal On the Origin of Species as part of its Classics Collection. The new edition has illustrations by Damien Hirst.

March 20 – August 23 The Australian Maritime Museum introduces Voyages that Shook the World, an interactive experience at which visitors can step aboard the Beagle and travel alongside Darwin, discovering the planet and learning about it through his eyes.

July 19-24 The Charles Darwin Foundation hosts a symposium exploring the role of science in relation to a sustainable future at Santa Cruz on the Galápagos Islands.

Summer, date to be confirmed The release of Jon Amiel’s feature film Creation, which explores the balance that Darwin found between his revolutionary theories on evolution and the relationship with his religious wife.

July 6 – December 9 For A Voyage Around the World Cambridge University library will exhibit the world’s largest archive of manuscripts, books and letters related to Darwin.

October 3 – July 2010 Manchester Museum presents Charles Darwin –The Evolution of a Scientist, a comprehensive look at Darwin, Darwinism and postDarwin influenced theories. The exhibition will include new installations, hands-on features for children and a host of artefacts collected from around the world.

[Retrieved: Sat Jan 03 2009 11:54:48 GMT+0000 (GMT Standard Time)]

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And one my Michael Reiss on Darwinian thinking clarifies and deepens religious faith, which is not very interesting!
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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jaywhat
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Re: Darwin's 200th anniversary

#56 Post by jaywhat » January 4th, 2009, 6:26 am

Darwin Day

I do not send cards at xmas time, but this year I shall start sending Darwin cards........

......I have deleted the rest and put 'Darwin Day' in Positive Humanism.

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