William Erasmus Darwin (1839–1914) was the first of the naturalist's ten children. From 1861 to 1870 he was his father's main scientific assistant for his outstanding research on plant forms and floral mechanisms for cross-fertilisation, and the different methods they have evolved for climbing. This volume contains three of Darwin's classic botanical works, to each of which William made significant contributions. In his later life William Erasmus championed the cause of university education for all, and played a leading role in the initiatives which led to the foundation of a university college in Southampton in 1902.
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