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Experimental Morphology.1

Nature volume 57, pages 4146 | Download Citation



IN looking at the progress which has been made in the study of plant morphology, I have been as much impressed with the different attitudes of mind toward the subject during the past 150 years as by the advance which has taken place in methods of study, as well as the important acquisitions to botanical science. These different view points have coincided to some extent with distinct periods of time. What Sachs in his “History of Botany” calls the “new morphology” was ushered in near the middle of the present century by von Mohl's researches in anatomy, by Naegeli's investigations of the cell, and Schleiden's history of the development of the flower. The leading idea in the study of morphology during this period was the inductive method for the purpose of discerning fundamental principles and laws, not simply the establishment of individual facts, which was especially characteristic of the earlier period when the dogma of the constancy of species prevailed.

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