Charles Robert Darwin, FRS was born on 12 February 1809. He was an English naturalist who established that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestors and he proposed the scientific theory that this branching pattern of evolution resulted from a process that he called natural selection, in which the struggle for existence has a similar effect to the artificial selection involved in selective breeding.
Darwin published his theory of evolution with compelling evidence in his 1859 book On the Origin of Species. By the 1870s the scientific community and much of the general public had accepted evolution as a fact. However, many favoured competing explanations and indeed there are some who still do.
Darwin died of coronary thrombosis on 19 April 1882 whilst on holiday in Montmorillon.