"degenerating by Degrees"

  The doctrine of evolution by degeneration is, once again, a bit of foresight on the part of Swift. Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon (7 September 1707 – 16 April 1788) was a French naturalist, mathematician, cosmologist, and encyclopedic author. Some decades after Gulliver's Travels was published, he suggested this in detail. He theory was that an ape was a degenerated man, a donkey a degenerated horse, and so on.