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Erasmus Darwin
Erasmus Darwin

Press Release - 07 February 2007

Free public lecture: Erasmus Darwin and the Lunar Society

Local people have the opportunity to hear about the life and work of pioneer evolutionist Erasmus Darwin, grandfather of Charles Darwin, in a free public lecture at the University of Bath on Wednesday 14 February.

Stuart Harris, a member of the management committee of the Erasmus Darwin Foundation, will describe Erasmus Darwin’s involvement with the Lunar Society of Birmingham, which brought together many of Britain’s leading scientists and innovators.

Mr Harris will consider the impact of the Society on Darwin’s literary work, which explored ideas about how life evolved, including Zoomania, The Laws of Organic Life and his poem The Temple of Nature.

Darwin was one of the leading intellectuals of eighteenth century England and was a physician, poet, philosopher, botanist and inventor. He was instrumental in setting up the Lunar Society with Josiah Wedgwood, Joseph Priestly and James Wyatt.

Mr Harris has published a new edition of Erasmus Darwin's poetry, entitled Cosmologia, and a critical study of his poetry, Erasmus Darwin's Enlightenment Epic.

Admission for the lecture is free and people can just turn up on the evening. Free parking is available in the West Car Park. The lecture runs from 5.15pm until 6.15pm in the lecture hall 8 West 1.1 on the Claverton campus.

The University of Bath is one of the UK's leading universities, with an international reputation for quality research and teaching. View a full list of the University's press releases: