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In 1866, the German zoologist Ernst Haeckel proposed that the embryonal development of an individual organism (its ontogeny) followed the same path as the evolutionary history of its species (its phylogeny). This theory arose from Haeckel’s attempt to synthesise the ideas of Lamarckism and Goethe’s Naturphilosophie with Charles Darwin’s concepts. –Wikipedia

“Ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny,”
Or so said Haeckel.
Still, my father insists that it was Verchow.
But his father before him probably had a different answer,
& so on, & so on, all the way back to
that first Furst that started it all,
that first Furst that each of us once was,
cilia propelling him around the Garden,
grousing to his wife
about his multi-cellular ingrates.


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