Historically Speaking

Making sense of it all!

A Monkey’s Uncle

Posted by Elyse Bruce on January 22, 2010

In 1859, Charles Darwin published “On the Origin of Species” that presented his scientific theory claiming that branching patterns of evolution resulted from a process called natural selection.

In 1871, the publication of Darwin’s theory on the  evolution of man in the book “Descent of Man” was greeted by a great deal of skepticism and considerable derision.

The idea that man was related by a common ancestor to apes and monkeys was considered the most outrageous of claims.

“I’ll be a monkey’s uncle” was originally a sarcastic remark by non-believers of Darwin’s theory and was intended to ridicule the theory of evolution.

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One Response to “A Monkey’s Uncle”

  1. […] In the end, any identity can (and has) been slipped into the expression over the generations to express incredulity.  Entire cultural groups have been slipped into the expression as in “I’m a Dutchman” or animals as in “I’m a monkey’s uncle!” […]

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