Is it a myth, a fact or something in-between?
1. Is it true that Darwin and/or Wallace originated the full theory of macroevolution by natural selection?
Answer = No! It's a myth because Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace, and many other top experts on evolution (such as Matthew himself, de Beer, Mayr and Dawkins) all agreed Matthew (1831) was first into print, decades before Darwin or Wallace with the full theory in his book On Naval Timber and Arboriculture.
2. Is it true that Matthew must have failed to influence Darwin and/or Wallace with his theory because no naturalists / no single person had read Matthew's theory before he claimed his priority in a published letter of 1860?
Answer = No! It's a myth started as an empirical proven lie by Darwin in all editions of the Origin of Species from third edition onwards and parroted by the credulous and adoring scientific community ever since. In 1860 Matthew's published letter informed Darwin directly that his book had been reviewed by the famous naturalist and biologist Loudon, reviewed in various periodicals and newspapers and was read by an esteemed profesor who could not teach it nor write about it for fear of pillory punishment, it being heretical in the first half of the 19th century. Sutton's research originally and uniquely identifies 30+ people who read and then cited Matthew's 1831 book in published print before Darwin and Wallace replicated the original theory in it. This list includes Wallace's admitted greatest influencer, Robert Chambers (who met and corresponded with Darwin pre-1858) and the editor of Wallace's famous Sarawak paper - Selby. Loudon edited and published two of Blyth's most influential papers, read by Darwin, and Darwin admitted Blyth was his most prolific correspondent on the topic of species and varieties.
3. Is it true, what Darwin claimed in the Origin of Species and elsewhere, that Matthew was an obscure writer and that Matthew's theory was only briefly given in the scattered pages of an appendix to an entirely irrelevant book on the topic?
Answer = No! It's a myth. Again this myth was started as a published lie by Darwin. Firstly, if Matthew was an obscure writer then how is it that pre-1858 Matthew was cited in the Encyclopedia Britannica and and elsewhere in that publication his 1831 enjoyed a prominent 1/2 page block advert and why is it that it is newly proven that before 1858 Darwin held in his own hands at least five publications that cited Matthew's 1831 book. Darwin lied about Matthew's theory being limited to an appendix because his own letter to Lyell on that topic said it would be splitting hairs to admit the truth (he knew, because Matthew had shown him in his published letter of reply to Darwin) was otherwise. Moreover, trees and plants are at the core of the theory of evolution by natural selection. Darwin was obsessed by trees and he notebook of books he read proves it.
4. Is it true that Darwin originated the term "process of natural selection"
Answer = Something in between. Big Data research does reveal he was apparently first into print with that term. But it is a four word shuffle of Matthew's 1831 original term of the very exact same meaning "natural process of selection". And Chambers (who cited Matthew's 1831 book before writing his own influential 1844 book on organic evolution) was apparently first to be second into print in 1859 with Matthew's original four word term.
5. Is it true that Darwin was the first to use artificial selection as an analogue of natural selection as an analogical explanation explain the process of natural selection?
Answer = No! It's a myth. Matthew was first to do that. He was then followed by Wallace who used it in his Sarawak paper. Darwin replicated Matthew's explanatory analogy in his private essay of 1844 and to open Chapter One in the Origin of Species. In that private essay Darwin even replicated Matthew's highly idiosyncratic analogy of difference between trees raised in nurseries versus trees growing wild in nature.
6. Is it true that Darwin was a remarkably honest man and genius orignal thinker?
Answer = No! It's a myth, proven by each and every one of the empirical fact led five answers to the questions above. Darwin (and Wallace too) was a replicator of a prior published theory and all paths of those who read and cited Matthew's book lead to Darwin and to Wallace and to their known and admitted influencers, friends and to their influencer's influencers. Darwin, with assistance from Wallace, and others,, facilitated and enabled by the bone-headed bias and credulity of the scientific community, committed the worlds greatest science fraud by plagiary and lies.
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