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Darwin’s Beagle library digitalized

By Tim Sandle     Jul 19, 2014 in Entertainment
Singapore - An online reconstruction of the books that Charles Darwin took on the ship Beagle, has made the library from Darwin’s famed voyage more accessible.
While on the voyage of the HMS Beagle, Charles Darwin lived and worked in a cabin that housed the ship’s library. This consisted of 404 volumes that spanned works by naturalists and explorers of the time.
To show the range of books studied by the naturalist, a virtual recreation of the library has been undertaken. The digital library gives readers a glimpse of the biologist’s life at sea and the types of animals and plants that he was interested in.
One of the maps studied by Charles Darwin on board HMS Beagle.
One of the maps studied by Charles Darwin on board HMS Beagle.
John van Wyhe
The reconstruction, according to Nature News, was led by science historian John van Wyhe of the National University of Singapore. The digital projects consists of 195,000 pages of text and 5,000 illustrations. Although many of these books are already widely used by researchers, The Guardian notes that the digitization makes the collection more accessible to general readers.
A colored drawing of a bird  studied by Charles Darwin.
A colored drawing of a bird, studied by Charles Darwin.
John van Wyhe
Although most of the tomes are non-fiction, a few works of fiction are present. These include Milton’s Paradise Lost, and a Spanish novel that Darwin is known to have read on the voyage.
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