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What year did Thomas Huxley give his speech about biogenesis and abiogenesis?I am doing...

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abbyemma1999 | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 16, 2011 at 6:12 AM via web

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What year did Thomas Huxley give his speech about biogenesis and abiogenesis?

I am doing a report on the year that Thomas Huxley gave his speech.

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ncchemist | eNotes Employee

Posted November 16, 2011 at 9:09 AM (Answer #1)

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Thomas Huxley was a prominent biology professor in England in the 19th century.  He coined the terms "biogenesis" and "abiogenesis" in a speech he gave in 1870.  Biogenesis means "life from existing life" and abiogenesis means "life from non-living materials."  Abiogenesis has its roots from spontaneous generation where it used to be believed that certain forms of life simply spontaneously came into existence under certain conditions (such as maggots from rotting food, etc.).  Huxley was a strong supporter of biogenesis and did much over his career to discredit the notion of spontaneous generation (abiogenesis).

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