, Haeckel was a zoologist, an accomplished artist and illustrator, and later a professor of comparative anatomy. He is most well known for his descriptions of phylogenetic trees, studies of radiolarians, and illustrations of vertebrate embryos to support his biogenetic law and Darwin’s work with evolution. Between 1859 and 1866 Haeckel worked on many phyla, such as radiolarians, poriferans (sponges) and annelids (segmented worms). One of his more revolutionary claims was that life was created by chance in the deep sea through random combinations of basic elements like carbon, oxygen, and sulfur.  There were multiple versions of the embryo drawings, and Haeckel rejected the claims of fraud. Haeckel did not support natural selection, rather believing in Lamarckism.  Haeckel supported the theory with embryo drawings that have since been shown to be oversimplified and in part inaccurate, and the theory is now considered an oversimplification of quite complicated relationships, however comparison of embryos remains a powerful way to demonstrate that all animals are related. The German biologist and artist Ernst Heinrich Philipp August Haeckel (1834–1919) (Fig. He also proposed the kingdom Protista in 1866. 1998. After publication he told a colleague that the images "are completely exact, partly copied from nature, partly assembled from all illustrations of these early stages that have hitherto become known". He held that evolutionary biology had definitively proven that races were unequal in intelligence and ability, and that their lives were also of unequal value. … There is certainly, even now, a number of lower vertebrate animals (e.g. The article focuses on the life and contribution of zoologist Ernst Haeckel to the discovery of multi-cellular organisms. Human language as such probably developed only after the species of speechless Urmenschen or Affenmenschen (German: ape-men) had split into several species or kinds. He studied at Würzburg and at the University of Berlin, where his professor, the physiologist and anatomist Johannes Müller, took him on a summer expedition to observe small sea creatures off the coast of Heligoland in the North Sea. Enthusiastically attempting to explain both inorganic and organic nature under the same physical laws, Haeckel portrayed the lowest creatures as mere protoplasm without nuclei; he speculated that they had arisen spontaneously through combinations of carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, hydrogen, and sulfur. Haeckel believed privately that his figures were both exact and synthetic, and in public asserted that they were schematic like most figures used in teaching. He became a key figure in social darwinism and leading proponent of scientific racism, stating for instance:. The current consensus of anthropologists is that the direct ancestors of modern humans were African populations of Homo erectus (possibly Homo ergaster), rather than the Asian populations exemplified by Java Man and Peking Man. Modern scientists and science historians have varied on the value of these diagrams … The similarity of early vertebrate embryos became common knowledge, and the illustrations were praised by experts such as Michael Foster of the University of Cambridge. p. 518. illustrations of animals and sea creatures, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex, Kristallseelen : Studien über das anorganische Leben, "Ernst Haeckel's contribution to Evo-Devo and scientific debate: a re-evaluation of Haeckel's controversial illustrations in US textbooks in response to creationist accusations", "Ernst Haeckel (1834–1919): The German Darwin and his impact on modern biology", Race, Racism, and Science: Social Impact and Interaction, "Pictures of evolution and charges of fraud: Ernst Haeckel's embryological illustrations", "Ernst Haeckel and the Struggles over Evolution and Religion", E. Haeckel: Natürliche Schöpfungsgeschichte 1868 (front page of 1st edition, German), E. Haeckel: Die Welträthsel 1899 (front page of 1st edition, German). , Haeckel also applied the hypothesis of polygenism to the modern diversity of human groups. G. Fischer, Jena, Germany [in German] BHL Reference page. Ernst Haeckel's contribution to Evo-Devo and scientific debate: a re-evaluation of Haeckel's controversial illustrations in US textbooks in response to creationist accusations.  Kurt Hildebrandt, a Nazi political philosopher, also rejected Haeckel. From Ernst Haeckel's. Before macro photography showed us tiny things in great detail, Ernst Heinrich Haeckel (16 February 1834 – 9 August 1919) drew life seen through his microscope.  He was also a social Darwinist who believed that "survival of the fittest" was a natural law, and that struggle led to improvement of the race. In 1852 Haeckel completed studies at the Domgymnasium, the cathedral high-school of Merseburg. On 21 October he visited Charles Darwin at Down House in Kent. If you have additional information or corrections regarding this mathematician, please use the update form.To submit students of this mathematician, please use the new data form, noting this mathematician's MGP ID of 159000 for the advisor ID. , Haeckel was a flamboyant figure, who sometimes took great, non-scientific leaps from available evidence. , From 1866 to 1867 Haeckel made an extended journey to the Canary Islands with Hermann Fol. , However, Haeckel's books were banned by the Nazi Party, which refused Monism and Haeckel's freedom of thought. Though Haeckel's views had attracted continuing controversy, there had been little dispute about the embryos and he had many expert supporters, but Wilhelm His revived the earlier criticisms and introduced new attacks on the 1874 illustrations. Rather than being a strict Darwinian, Haeckel believed that the characteristics of an organism were acquired through interactions with the environment and that ontogeny reflected phylogeny.  Robert J. Richards, in a paper published in 2008, defends the case for Haeckel, shedding doubt against the fraud accusations based on the material used for comparison with what Haeckel could access at the time. In 1857 … The images were reworked to match in size and orientation, and though displaying Haeckel's own views of essential features, they support von Baer's concept that vertebrate embryos begin similarly and then diverge. In the United States, Mount Haeckel, a 13,418 ft (4,090 m) summit in the Eastern Sierra Nevada, overlooking the Evolution Basin, is named in his honour, as is another Mount Haeckel, a 2,941 m (9,649 ft) summit in New Zealand; and the asteroid 12323 Haeckel.  As a result of the "struggle for existence", it followed that the "lower" races would eventually be exterminated. , In 1864, his beloved first wife, Anna Sethe, died. One of the first problems with the illustrations in the first row of Haeckel’s comparative embryo plates in his work Anthropogenie is that he drew many embryos, including the human and chick embryos, without either pericardial or heart bulges, where they possess these in reality. Dubois classified Java Man with Haeckel's Pithecanthropus label, though they were later reclassified as Homo erectus. The word ecology was coined by the German zoologist Ernst Haeckel, who applied the term oekologie to the “relation of the animal both to its organic as well as its inorganic environment.” The word comes from the Greek oikos, meaning “household,” “home,” or “place to live.”Thus, ecology deals with the organism and its environment.  Alfred Ploetz, founder of the German Society for Racial Hygiene, praised Haeckel repeatedly, and invited him to become an honorary member. Haeckel's publisher turned down a proposal for a "strictly scholarly and objective" second edition. Ernst Heinrich Philipp August Haeckel was a prominent comparative anatomist and active lecturer in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Although Haeckel's ideas are important to the history of evolutionary theory, and although he was a competent invertebrate anatomist most famous for his work on radiolaria, many speculative concepts that he championed are now considered incorrect. Vol. As a philosopher, Ernst Haeckel wrote Die Welträthsel (1895–1899; in English: The Riddle of the Universe, 1901), the genesis for the term "world riddle" (Welträtsel); and Freedom in Science and Teaching to support teaching evolution. At that time, no remains of human ancestors had yet been identified. Ernst Haeckel was a renowned German biologist, naturalist, physician, philosopher and artist who identified many new species of living beings and gave names to thousands of them. Ernst Mayr. This is so because the growing embryo needs a constant supply of oxygen, and nutrients. His Generelle Morphologie der Organismen (1866; “General Morphology of Organisms”) presented many of his evolutionary ideas, but the scientific community was little interested. :270–274, The book sold very well, and while some anatomical experts hostile to Haeckel's evolutionary views expressed some private concerns that certain figures had been drawn rather freely, the figures showed what they already knew about similarities in embryos. , Haeckel became the most famous proponent of Monism in Germany. Haeckel's notion that ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny was deeply flawed, but it was at least straightforward. Daniel Gasman (1998). It was agreed by all European evolutionists that all vertebrates looked very similar at an early stage, in what was thought of as a common ideal type, but there was a continuing debate from the 1820s between the Romantic recapitulation theory that human embryos developed through stages of the forms of all the major groups of adult animals, literally manifesting a sequence of organisms on a linear chain of being, and Karl Ernst von Baer's opposing view, stated in von Baer's laws of embryology, that the early general forms diverged into four major groups of specialised forms without ever resembling the adult of another species, showing affinity to an archetype but no relation to other types or any transmutation of species. From p. 215: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (. Haeckel divided human beings into ten races, of which the Caucasian was the highest and the primitives were doomed to extinction. Photograph of Ernst Haeckel (left) in the Canary Islands with his assistant Miklucho-Maclay in 1867. For a time he practiced medicine; his father then agreed to his traveling to Italy, where he painted and even considered art as a career. At the end of 1868 his review in the Archiv für Anthropologie wondered about the claim that the work was "popular and scholarly", doubting whether the second was true, and expressed horror about such public discussion of man's place in nature with illustrations such as the evolutionary trees being shown to non-experts. He left the Lutheran church in 1910. The published artwork of Haeckel includes over 100 detailed, multi-colour illustrations of animals and sea creatures, collected in his Kunstformen der Natur ("Art Forms of Nature"). In 1862 he was appointed extraordinary (that is, associate) professor of zoology, and that year, when he published his monograph on the Radiolaria, he expressed in it his agreement with Darwin’s theory of evolution; from that time he was a proponent of Darwinism, and he soon was lecturing to scientific and lay audiences on the descent theory. His gastraea theory, tracing all multicellular animals to a hypothetical two-layered ancestor, stimulated both discussion and investigation. 1, pp. :275–276;282–286, The revised 1870 second edition of 1,500 copies attracted more attention, being quickly followed by further revised editions with larger print runs as the book became a prominent part of the optimistic, nationalist, anticlerical "culture of progress" in Otto von Bismarck's new German Empire.  He was also a pacifist until the First World War, when he wrote propaganda in favor of the war. The first published concerns came from Ludwig Rütimeyer, a professor of zoology and comparative anatomy at the University of Basel who had placed fossil mammals in an evolutionary lineage early in the 1860s and had been sent a complimentary copy. A staunch evolutionary biologist, Haeckel put Darwin on the world map. :288–296, While it has been widely claimed that Haeckel was charged with fraud by five professors and convicted by a university court at Jena, there does not appear to be an independently verifiable source for this claim. The evolutionary study of embryos reached a peak in the late 1800s thanks primarily to the efforts of one extraordinarily gifted, though not entirely honest, scientist named Ernst Haeckel (left).  During a trip to the Mediterranean, Haeckel named nearly 150 new species of radiolarians. Robert J. Richards, "Myth 19: That Darwin and Haeckel Were Complicit in Nazi Biology", in. He described these theoretical remains in great detail and even named the as-yet unfound species, Pithecanthropus alalus, and instructed his students such as Richard and Oskar Hertwig to go and find it. Affiliations Ernst Haeckel was a German biologist, naturalist, and artist who pioneered the practice of using artistic illustrations to capture the likenesses of animals in the wild during the 19th century. He proposed the biogenetic law while working at the University of Jena in Jena, Germany, in his 1866 book Generelle Morphologie der Organismen [ General Morphology of the Organisms ]. These separate languages had completed the transition from animals to man, and under the influence of each main branch of languages, humans had evolved – in a kind of Lamarckian use-inheritance – as separate species, which could be subdivided into races. Despite the significance to ideas of transformism, this was not really polite enough for the new popular science writing, and was a matter for medical institutions and for experts who could make their own comparisons. It was frequently reprinted until 1926. Over the next few days he met Charles Lyell, and visited Thomas Huxley and family at their home. , The evidence is in some respects ambiguous.  For a fuller list of works of and about Haeckel, see his entry in the German Wikisource. ), German zoologist and evolutionist who was a strong proponent of Darwinism and who proposed new notions of the evolutionary descent of human beings. , The creationist polygenism of Samuel George Morton and Louis Agassiz, which presented human races as separately created species, was rejected by Charles Darwin, who argued for the monogenesis of the human species and the African origin of modern humans. , German biologist, philosopher, physician, and artist, "Haeckel" redirects here. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. Born in Germany in 1834, Ernst Haeckel studied medicine at the University of Berlin and graduated in 1857. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. The turning point in Haeckel’s thinking was his reading of Charles Darwin’s 1859 work, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. On 17 October 1866 he arrived in London. Though he made no suggestion that embryo illustrations should be directly based on specimens, to him the subject demanded the utmost "scrupulosity and conscientiousness" and an artist must "not arbitrarily model or generalise his originals for speculative purposes" which he considered proved by comparison with works by other authors. Watts E (1), Levit GS (2), Hossfeld U (3). , In his Ontogeny and Phylogeny Harvard paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould wrote: "[Haeckel's] evolutionary racism; his call to the German people for racial purity and unflinching devotion to a 'just' state; his belief that harsh, inexorable laws of evolution ruled human civilization and nature alike, conferring upon favored races the right to dominate others ... all contributed to the rise of Nazism. Ernst Haeckel – Evolution's controversial artist. In 1906 Haeckel founded a group called the Monist League (Deutscher Monistenbund) to promote his religious and political beliefs. He termed these early organisms Mon… Haeckel, E. 1879. , Haeckel's wife, Agnes, died in 1915, and he became substantially frailer, breaking his leg and arm. He had long been thinking of “vital molecular movement” when, in 1876, he attempted to place heredity on a molecular basis in a work entitled Die Perigenesis der Plastidule (“The Generation of Waves in the Small Vital Particles”).  Others have denied the relationship all together.  Gunther Hecht, a member of the Nazi Department of Race Politics, also issued a memorandum rejecting Haeckel as a forerunner of Nazism. For other uses, see, Assessments of potential influence on Nazism. Thus they do not inform the debate and may themselves be disingenuous." He then studied medicine in Berlin and Würzburg, particularly with Albert von Kölliker, Franz Leydig, Rudolf Virchow (with whom he later worked briefly as assistant), and with the anatomist-physiologist Johannes Peter Müller (1801–1858). Some historians have seen Haeckel's social Darwinism as a forerunner to Nazi ideology. Richardson and Keuck, (Biol. An effective popularizer of science, Haeckel produced numerous tree diagrams, showing evolutionary relationships between different species. He was an atheist. In 1891 Haeckel made the excuse that this "extremely rash foolishness" had occurred in undue haste but was "bona fide", and since repetition of incidental details was obvious on close inspection, it is unlikely to have been intentional deception. This species alone (with the exception of the Mongolian) has had an actual history; it alone has attained to that degree of civilisation which seems to raise men above the rest of nature. Ernst Heinrich Philipp August Haeckel (German: [ˈʔɛɐ̯nst ˈhɛkl̩]; 16 February 1834 – 9 August 1919) was a German zoologist, naturalist, eugenicist, philosopher, physician, professor, marine biologist, and artist who discovered, described and named thousands of new species, mapped a genealogical tree relating all life forms, and coined many terms in biology, including ecology, phylum, phylogeny, and Protista. Haeckel was fond of drawing linear and symmetrical trees of evolution, tracing humanity's ancestry back to life's earliest forms, especially the protozoa he had published on at the beginning of his career. "Haeckel's embryos continued". Michael K. Richardson. Ernst Haeckel's evolutionary scheme presented in the form of a tree.  It proposed a link between ontogeny (development of form) and phylogeny (evolutionary descent), summed up by Haeckel in the phrase "ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny".  He then studied medicine in Berlin and Würzburg, particularly with Albert von Kölliker, Franz Leydig, Rudolf Virchow (with whom he later worked briefly as assistant), and with the anatomist-physiologist Johannes Peter Müller (1801–1858). Haeckel retired from teaching in 1909, and in 1910 he withdrew from the Evangelical Church of Prussia. They quote Haeckel as saying "If [recapitulation] was always complete, it would be a very easy task to construct whole phylogeny on the basis of ontogeny. Initially Haeckel trained as a physician, and then studied comparative anatomy with … Together with Hermann Steudner he attended botanylectures in Würzburg. Ernst Haeckel was born on 16 February 1834, in Potsdam (then part of the Kingdom of Prussia). , Ernst Haeckel was born on 16 February 1834, in Potsdam (then part of the Kingdom of Prussia). 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