Human and ape phylogeny

P.Hovenkamp Hovenkamp at NHN.LEIDENUNIV.NL
Tue Apr 8 10:22:53 CDT 2003

At 03:55 PM 4/7/03 +0100, David Williams wrote:
>Interesting. So in a non-evolutionary world vertebrates (homologue) =
>Vertebrata (taxon), in an evolutionary world they do not. And in an
>evolutionary world, Owen's derivation ('transformation') of vertebrate
>parts from the archetype (ancestor) makes sense, whereas in a
>non-evolutionary world (Owen's) they do not.

The first point is based on a misunderstanding - understandably, perhaps,
because I just gave a short reply, not a longish treatise on homology. To
answer it I would recall that vertebrae (if that's what were talking about,
otherwise I give up) did not develop from scratch - iirc there are
homologous structures in non-vertebrate chordates.
Second point is more interesting, as it is in fact true. Owen's derivation
of vertebrate parts does not make sense in a non-evolutionary world. It is
one of the "explananda" of which evolution is the "explanans".

Peter Hovenkamp

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