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Discourse on the Revolutionary Upheavals - George Cuvier

Discourse on the Revolutionary Upheavals - George Cuvier

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Published by Mikael de SanLeon
Translated by Ian Johnston (2009)
Translated by Ian Johnston (2009)

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: Mikael de SanLeon on Nov 25, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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11/14/2013

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George CuvierDISCOURSEONTHE REVOLUTIONARY UPHEAVALSON THE SURFACE OF THE GLOBE AND ON THE CHANGES WHICH THEY HAVEPRODUCEDIN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM
Translated by Ian Johnston Vancouver Island University Nanaimo, BCCanada[Revised 2009][Note that this text may be downloaded, printed, and distributed ordistributed electronically, in whole or in part, without permission and without charge. Commercial publication of any part of it is, however,prohibited, without the permission of the translator. For information,please contact
ian.johnston@viu.ca.
 Please note that in order to make the download of this text quicker, thediagrams at the end of Cuvier’s text have been placed in a different file.These may be accessed by the following link:Diagrams. If the link does not work try typing the address
http://records.viu.ca/~johnstoi/cuvier/illustrations.pdf  into the browser.
 
 
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Table of Contents
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Introductory Note 3Translator’s Note 5Foreword 6Exposition 7The First Appearance of the Earth 8The First Proofs of Upheavals 9Proofs that these Revolutions have been Numerous 10Proofs that these Revolutions have been Sudden 11Proofs that there were Revolutionary Upheavals before theExistence of Living Things 12Examination of the Causes Which Are Still at Work Today on the Surface of the Earth 15Collapses 16 Alluvial Deposits 16Dunes 17Cliffs 17Deposits Under the Waters 18Stalactites 18Lithophytes 19Encrustations 19 Volcanoes 20Constant Astronomical Causes 20 Ancient Systems of Geologists 21More Recent Systems 22Divergences of All Systems 24Causes of These Divergences 24The Nature and Conditions of the Problem 25Reason for the Neglect of These Conditions 26Progress of Mineral Geology 26Importance of Fossils in Geology 26
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[
Translator’s note 
: Cuvier’s text has words in the margins to indicate the start of impor-tant sections. These remarks in the margins have been made headings in the followingtext and are listed above in the Table of Contents].
 
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Special Importance of the Fossil Bones of Quadrupeds 28There is Little Hope of Discovering New Species of LargeQuadrupeds 29The Fossil Bones of Quadrupeds are Difficult to Determine 39Principle of Determination 40Tabulated General Results of These Studies 44Relationships Between Species and the Strata 45The Lost Species Are Not Varieties of the Living Species 48There Are No Human Fossil Bones 53Physical Proofs of the Newness of the Present State of the Continents 56Deposits of Material 56The March of the Dunes 63Peat Bogs and Rock Falls 64The History of Peoples Confirms the Newness of the Continents 64The Excessive Antiquity Attributed to Certain People HasNo Historical Basis 69The Astronomical Monuments Left by the Ancients DoNot Bear the Excessively Distant Dates Which People BelieveThey Have Seen in Them 92The Zodiac Is Far From Carrying in Itself a Certain andExcessively Ancient Date 103Exaggerations Concerning Certain Mine Works 106General Conclusion Concerning the Time of the LatestRevolution 107Ideas About Later Geological Research Projects 107 A Summary of the Observations on the Successive Formations 109Enumeration of Fossil Animals Recognized by the Author 113 Appendix: Determination of the Birds Called Ibis by the Ancient Egyptians 133Illustrations 149 A Note on the Translator 157
Introductory Note
Georges Cuvier (1769-1832) was a major scientific figure in the early 19
th
 century, a brilliant and enormously influential naturalist in France andthroughout Europe. His work on the comparative anatomy of living andfossil animals, especially vertebrates, was a major landmark in the history of modern biology. Cuvier was, like many other naturalists at the time, astaunch opponent of the theory of evolution, above all as that theory hadbeen presented by his colleague Jean-Baptiste Lamarck in
Philosophie zoologique 
(1809).

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