Gregor Johann Mendel (July 20, 1822 – January 6, 1884) was a German-speaking Silesian scientist and Augustinian friar who gained posthumous fame as the founder of the new science of genetics. Mendel demonstrated that the inheritance of certain traits in pea plants follows particular patterns, now referred to as the laws of Mendelian inheritance. The profound significance of Mendel's work was not recognized until the turn of the 20th century, when the independent rediscovery of these laws initiated the modern science of genetics.
Plant reproduction is the production of new individuals or offspring in plants, which can be accomplished by sexual or asexual means. Sexual reproduction produces offspring by the fusion of gametes, resulting in offspring genetically different from the parent or parents. Asexual reproduction produces new individuals without the fusion of gametes, genetically identical to the parent plants and each other, except when mutations occur. In seed plants, the offspring can be packaged in a protective seed, which is used as an agent of dispersal.
William Bateson (Robin Hood's Bay, August 8, 1861 – February 8, 1926) was an English geneticist and a Fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge. He was the first person to use the term genetics to describe the study of heredity and biological inheritance, and the chief populariser of the ideas of Gregor Mendel following their rediscovery in 1900 by Hugo de Vries and Carl Correns.
Particulate inheritance is a pattern of inheritance discovered by Mendelian theorists (or by Gregor Mendel himself) showing that characteristics can be passed from generation to generation through "discrete particles" (now known as genes). These particles can keep their ability to be expressed while not always appearing in a descending generation.
Early in the 19th century, scientists had already recognized that Earth has been inhabited by living creatures for a very long time. On the other hand, they did not understand what mechanisms actually drove biological diversity. They also did not understand how physical traits are inherited from one generation to the next. Blending inheritance was the common ideal at the time, but was later discredited by the experiments of Gregor Mendel. Mendel proposed the theory of particulate inheritance by using pea plants (Pisum sativum) to explain how variation can be inherited and maintained over time.