11 June 2008

"Time to Eat the Dogs"

...is the title of a new blog on science, history and exploration that any fan of The Beagle Project (and her blog) simply must visit. Two posts in particular are required reading for anyone interested in Darwin and science under sail (that'd be you, dear reader):

"Digital Archive: Charles Darwin" contains some of the most delightful writing on Darwin/Beagle that I've read in a long long time. Here's a sample:

Grave, sober Darwin. The melancholic Santa, staring out at us as if we were vandalizing his sleigh. This is the Darwin we remember: the tired revolutionary, the Devil’s Chaplin, a man so afflicted by ailments that he was a prisoner of Down House where he lived. Yet Darwin’s story — and the revolution he set off — grows out of his experiences as a youthful explorer, a roving naturalist aboard HMS Beagle.

*wild applause from The Beagle Project*

The above calls to mind my ongoing championship of images (both written and visual) of Darwin the young explorer.

Then there's "The Reenacted Voyage", in which intrepid historian-blogger Michael Robinson documents his experience on a modern research sailing ship, the Corwith Cramer:
In my former career in science, the mysteries of life were something best looked at indoors, preferably under a laminar flow hood where they wouldn’t infect you. Today my research questions are different. They focus on humans rather than marine ecology or rarefied microbes. And it was the human element of the voyage that made the its greatest impression on me, namely my own halting adaptation to life aboard ship.
And so, from all of us here at The Beagle Project: welcome to the blogosphere, Michael! I'm very much looking forward to following your adventures and reading more of your brilliant turns of phrase along the lines of "melancholic Santa". What a keeper.

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