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Charles Robert Darwin was born in 1809 of a prosperous middle class family, his paternal grandfather was the scientist Erasmus Darwin and his maternal grandfather was the potter Josiah Wedgewood. At 16 he went to Edinburgh University to study medicine which he hated, so he joined Christ's College Cambridge to study theology which he found more congenial.
in January 1831 he was offered an opportunity that was to transform his life, when he was chosen as the naturalist on board HMS Beagle and spent the next five years circumnavigating the globe. The most famous of many places visited were the Galapagos Islands where he stayed for one month. He collected many specimens on his journey and made daily entries into a journal, that was to form the basis for his published works.
This is only a brief summary of the life of the great man, but a visit to Down house off the A21 near Biggin Hill in Kent, will provide much more information on Darwin's life and travels. Tour the House, including his study and browse several exhibitions explaining his life, also explore the pleasant grounds which include his old laboratory.