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Form and Function A Contribution to the History of Animal Morphology   By: (1887-1954)

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Form and Function: A Contribution to the History of Animal Morphology by E. S. (Edward Stuart) Russell is a remarkable piece of scientific literature that delves into the intricate world of animal morphology. Russell takes readers on a captivating journey through the history of this field, shedding light on the interplay between form and function in the animal kingdom.

The author's deep understanding of the subject matter is evident from the very first page. Russell possesses a unique ability to make complex concepts accessible to readers of all backgrounds. His eloquent writing style, coupled with a wealth of knowledge, ensures that even novice readers can grasp the significance of the topics discussed.

One commendable aspect of Form and Function is the meticulous attention given to historical developments within animal morphology. Russell offers a comprehensive overview of important scientific contributions, dating back to ancient times until the present day. By doing so, he provides a crucial context that allows readers to appreciate the progression of ideas and theories over time.

Furthermore, Russell's exploration of the relationship between form and function is truly enlightening. He delves into the underlying principles that govern animal morphology, explaining how the structure of an organism directly influences its biological function. Russell's explanations are supported by numerous illustrations and diagrams, which greatly enhance understanding and help readers visualize the concepts being discussed.

In addition to the historical and theoretical aspects, the book also showcases real-life examples that demonstrate the practical applications of animal morphology. Russell presents case studies and experiments conducted by eminent scientists throughout history, highlighting how observations in the field have contributed to our understanding of animal form and function.

One possible improvement for this work would be the inclusion of more recent research findings. Although Russell's historical exploration is extensive and valuable, greater attention to contemporary studies would have made the book even more engaging for readers seeking the latest advancements in animal morphology.

In conclusion, Form and Function: A Contribution to the History of Animal Morphology is a highly informative and engaging book. Edward Stuart Russell's eloquent writing, thorough research, and ability to explain complex concepts make this work accessible to a wide range of readers. Those interested in the history and intricacies of animal morphology will find this book to be an invaluable resource.

First Page:



By E.S. RUSSELL, M.A., B.Sc., F.Z.S.





All rights reserved

Transcriber's Note: Obvious printer errors have been corrected, all other inconsistencies in spelling and punctuation are as in the original.


This book is not intended to be a full or detailed history of animal morphology: a complete account is given neither of morphological discoveries nor of morphological theories. My aim has been rather to call attention to the existence of diverse typical attitudes to the problems of form, and to trace the interplay of the theories that have arisen out of them.

The main currents of morphological thought are to my mind three the functional or synthetic, the formal or transcendental, and the materialistic or disintegrative.

The first is associated with the great names of Aristotle, Cuvier, and von Baer, and leads easily to the more open vitalism of Lamarck and Samuel Butler. The typical representative of the second attitude is E. Geoffroy St. Hilaire, and this habit of thought has greatly influenced the development of evolutionary morphology... Continue reading book >>

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