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The Life and Correspondence of William Buckland, D.D., F.R.S


    IN the early decades of this century Geology had not established for itself an acknowledged place in the circle of the natural sciences. With as yet no settled philosophical basis, it offered a boundless field for indulgence in the wildest conjectures and the boldest speculation. Its votaries were, therefore, hardly regarded as serious students by the scientific men of the day. On the other hand, they incurred much popular odium. They had drawn such strange and almost incredible pictures of what they averred to have been the past history of the earth, so utterly at variance with all accepted beliefs, that they were looked upon with suspicion by some, sneered at by others, while by a large body of blatant opponents they were openly denounced as freethinkers, who, under the guise of natural science, aimed at the subversion of all religion. It needed some courage to be a geologist in those days, and still more to be a champion of the new inquiry.

    The Life and Correspondence of William Buckland, D.D., F.R.S.

    By his Daughter, Mrs. Gordon. (London: John Murray, 1894.)

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