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A New Edition of Alfred Russel Wallace Book Features Rare Essay

Michael Flannery

I thought readers would be interested to know that a newly revised edition of my book Alfred Russel Wallace’s Theory of Intelligent Evolution: How Wallace’s World of Life Challenged Darwinism is now available, featuring a rare and fascinating essay by the Rev. John Magens Mello.
Mello, a graduate of Oxford University, was rector of St. Thomas’s near Chesterfield from 1863 until 1887 when he became the vicar of Mapperley, Derbyshire. Mello was fascinated by the co-discoverer of natural selection and particularly with the naturalist’s grand evolutionary synthesis, The World of Life (1910). Shortly after that book was published, Mello wrote “The Mystery of Life and Mind, with special reference to The World of Life by A. R. Wallace.”
Although Wallace was not a Christian, Mello’s essay provides a detailed outline of the work and places Wallace’s ideas within a specifically Christian context. Mello’s interest in The World of Life was understandable for he too was a man with scientific interests. He was a member of the Geological Society, La Soci�t� Scientifique de Bruxelles, and other scientific societies of his day. He also authored a Handbook to the Geology of Derbyshire in 1866 and released a revised edition in 1891.
Now Mello’s little-known 1911 essay, originally issued as a 20-page pamphlet, is available to a new generation of readers as Appendix B, “A Theologian/Scientist Looks at The World of Life.”