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In Brief

Alfred Russel Wallace's House for Sale in England

Alfred Russel Wallace collection and specimens
An antique cabinet acquired inadvertently by a Washington, D.C. lawyer turned out to hold Alfred Russel Wallace's collection of 1,700 specimens housed in 26 drawers. (Image credit: National Science Foundation)

Fancy owning a bit of evolutionary history? For just £1.5 million (about $2.3 million with current exchange rates), you can own the house that Alfred Russel Wallace built when he returned from the travels to exotic locales that helped him formulate the idea of evolution through natural selection independently of Charles Darwin, Nature's News blog reports (opens in new tab).

The house, which Wallace dubbed "The Dell," is situated north of the Thames to the east of London in the town of Grays in Essex. Wallace had the house built in 1872, but only lived in it for four years, Nature reports.

Wallace wrote to Darwin about the observations from his travels and his ideas on natural selection, prompting Darwin to rush to publish his own work and observations, which he had sat on for years. Wallace has been a bit of a footnote to Darwin ever since, though he is considered an eminent naturalist in his own right.

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Andrea Thompson
Andrea Thompson

Andrea Thompson is an associate editor at Scientific American, where she covers sustainability, energy and the environment. Prior to that, she was a senior writer covering climate science at Climate Central and a reporter and editor at Live Science, where she primarily covered Earth science and the environment. She holds a graduate degree in science health and environmental reporting from New York University, as well as a bachelor of science and and masters of science in atmospheric chemistry from the Georgia Institute of Technology.