Quotation by Thomas Henry Huxley

If the question is put to me would I rather have a miserable ape for a grandfather or a man highly endowed by nature and possessed of great means of influence and yet who employs those faculties and that influence for the mere purpose of introducing ridicule into a grave scientific discussion—I unhesitatingly affirm my preference for the ape.
Thomas Henry Huxley (1825–1895), British biologist. Speech, June 30, 1860, University Museum, Oxford. Quoted in Harvest of a Quiet Eye, ed. Alan L. Mackay (1977).

When asked by Samuel Wilberforce, Bishop of Oxford, whether he traced his descent from an ape on his mother's or his father's side, during a meeting of the British Association (commemorated by a plate in the University Museum). Huxley was the foremost scientific supporter of Darwin's theory of evolution, and became known as "Darwin's Bulldog." The precise wording of his retort to Wilberforce, which was remembered afterwards, varies according to different versions.
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