Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Rubies in the rubbish On Naval Timber (Matthew 1831)

[See here for all my posts on Pattrick Matthew and plagiarism claims made on his behalf.] 
[update: 6 jan. 2015] Added one ruby at page 373.

The following is a graphic illustration of the structure of On Naval Timber and Arboriculture by Patrick Matthew (1831). The number line is proportional to the pages of the book. Particular pages are marked. For example, the Introduction goes from page 1 to page 5. The title page, preface etc. all come before page 1.  

The pages, where Matthew has written something of relevance to his idea of natural selection, are marked red and enumerated as rubies, because they are lost in this vast book on other topics. A reader interested in natural selection will feel, as if they were rubies in the rubbish.

As can be seen from this illustration, the biggest part of the book is Part IV, which is a critique of previous works of other scholars that have treated arboriculture. This is the biggest heap of rubbish, so to speak, but it also contains one of the most significant rubies, the one containing the phrase "natural process of selection."

For more information on the structure and contents of the book see this previous post.