Obrázky na stránke

of human happiness. Had an ordinary routine physician been appointed in his place, the same abuses might have continued unabated for years, and no suspicion have ever crossed his mind that the system was susceptible of the smallest improvement. How few, accordingly,—how very few-are there, among the numerous establishments of Europe, whose physicians have done any thing to advance our knowledge of insanity, or even given to the world any record of their principles, practice, or experience! Many golden opportunities are thus lost for ever; but the day is approaching, when a more active and enlightened zeal will hasten to remove the reproach.

After this preface, we need hardly say, that the name of Pinel on the title-page of the above work gave us a sanguine expectation of finding the son carrying on the labours of his lamented parent, and contributing a fresh stock of information on this most interesting subject. Nor have we been deceived. We miss occasionally the perfect sobriety of judgment and solidity of matter which distinguished the father ; but we recognise the same acute observation, glowing benevolence, and scientific zeal, which characterized him; combined, indeed, as is quite natural, with a more youthful and ardent imagination. These, however, are defects which the lapse of time and further experience will not fail to remove.

We intended to notice the present work at greater length ; but, owing to want of room, must content ourselves with offering a strong recommendation to its able author, to make himself thoroughly acquainted with the facts and evidences of Phrenology; as we feel assured that it will enable him to give additional force and precision to his views, and to explain satisfactorily a variety of phenomena, which will otherwise seem perplexing and contradictory. His liberality, intelligence, and candour, lead us to believe, that conviction of the truth and value of Phrenology will follow his study of its doctrines; and we feel persuaded, that, with its assistance, he would not only do greater justice to his own talents, but add much to the practical value of his work. In the hope that a second edition, thus amended, may make its carly appearance, we leave him at present with our best wishes.





TO THE EDITOR OF THE PHRENOLOGICAL JOURNAL. Sir, I am directed to make the following communication to you respecting the Manchester Phrenological Society's proceedings since the last report inserted in the Journal :

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

3d June 1834.—Mr James Edmondson read a paper on the character and development of Burns the poet; which led to an animated discussion at this and the ensuing meeting.

10th June.-Mr Bally introduced Mr Ditchfield, a resident of Paris, who visited this country mainly for the purpose of estimating the progress of Phrenology, with the view of report- . ing on the subject to its advocates in Paris. He was unanimously elected a corresponding member.

20 July. The president, Mr Wilson, read a paper on idiocy, peculiarly referring to the case of the Salford idiot, as published in the last Journal,

5th August.--Mr A. Prentice suggested for discussion the question, “ How far are the principles adopted in infant school education consonant with those of Phrenology ?” In the course of his observations on this question, Mr P. entered into the description of the mode adopted generally in infant schools in the neighbourhood, in the founding of several of which he has been mainly instrumental. A long discussion arose upon the question, particularly as to the liability of the faculties to fatigue, and the great necessity of peculiar regard to avoiding an over exercise of them during infancy.

230 September.-A paper was read by Mr Edmondson“ the practice of taking developments”-deprecating the course adopted by some Phrenologists in pursuing almost indiscriminate manipulation of heads, and the prediction of character therefrom-a practice which, owing to a due regard not always being had to the whole relative conditions, he considered calculated to do injury to Phrenology, and so tending to impede its progress, by increasing the prejudices already too general against it.

14th October.-Mr Bally laid upon the table ten casts of different sections of the brain, as exhibited in the course of its dissection, according to the plan of Dr Spurzheim. The casts are beautifully executed, and are coloured and finished so as to constitute an invaluable substitute for the real brain in the illustration of cerebral anatomy. Mr Bally also displayed and dissected the brain of a sheep; upon which, in connection with the above-mentioned casts, he proceeded to give a series of observations on the anatomy of the brain, and to point out the correspondencies of the sheep's and the human brain. His remarks and dissection elicited the warmest thanks of the Society, and subsequently the set of casts of the brain was purchased and added to the Society's collection. The subject of the anatomy of the brain was continued at three subsequent meetings by Mr D. Noble and Mr Bally.

21st October.-Mr James Edmondson read a paper on the character of the natives of Loo-Choo, as described by Captain

، أ.

[ocr errors]

Basil Hall, and suggested an inferred general development; which led to an interesting discussion.it,

ad December - Mr Daniel Noble read a paper et on the means, physical and moral, of estimating human character." So highly were the merits of this essay appreciated by the members present on the second evening of discussion, that they determined upon its publication in the form of a pamphlet. This resolution has since been carried into effect, and a copy is herewith forwarded.

9th December.Previously to entering into the farther discussion of Mr Noble's paper read at the last meeting, Mr Noble begged to make some remarks upon the critique contained in the last number of the Journal, upon his paper on the temperaments, therein published, and forwarded by this Society to the Editors. After some discussion upon those remarks, it was

. resolved unanimously, “ That the Secretary is directed to communicate to the Editors of the Journal the objections of this Society to the critique on the abridgement of Mr D. Noble’s paper on the temperaments, contained in the December number of that publication.” In accordance with this resolution, I may be allowed respectfully to remark, that Mr Noble does not state in the essay that " indolence and mental inactivity in the absence of any very powerful motive" are the result of the sanguine temperament; but that this condition of things is most commonly associated with it, and for the reasons stated by Mr Noble in the succeeding paragraph, viz." in consequence of the predominant energy usually possessed in these instances by the organs of vegetative life," leading most generally to the state of bodily constitution which you, in your critical illustration, allow to be productive of " mental indolence and inactivity.” It was conceived by the Society, that had the whole sentence within the periods, relative to this matter, been quoted, your half-condemnatory remarks would not have been deemed so appropriate, In your concluding remarks in the critique in question, you observe, that “ Temperament, therefore, besides influencing the activity of the organs, affects their power also, to a greater extent than Mr Noble seems inclined to allow.". The Society apprehends, that had not a very important paragraph been abstracted, in the process of abridgement, this objection could not have appeared to hold good. In the draft of the paper in the possession of Mr Noble, the paragraph alluded to runs thus, " The practical inference which I would deduce from all these circumstances is, that, in forming an opinion of mental peculiarity from corporeal structure, we should in all cases take into the account, not only the size of the brain generally and the cerebral organs individually, but also the kind of temperament with which they

are associated; for as this latter very materially modifies the degree of exercise to which the power may have been submitted, it will be absolutely impossible to form a correct idea of the actual energy of any power, without our attention being directed to its probable training, over which the temperament exerts such a manifest influence. We are all well aware that the vigour of any faculty is obviously increased by its due exercise, and certainly before any corresponding increase in the size of the organic material can have taken place,” &c. &c. In conclusion, it appears to us that the views expressed in Mr Noble's paper are, that exercise increases the energy of the powers, and that such exercise is promoted by a favourable temperamenti

We feel it incumbent upon us thus to declare ourselves upon the foregoing subject, having unanimously adopted Mr Noble's essay on the temperaments, and having originally forwarded the same for insertion in your valuable Journal.

- 16th December -Mr Prentice read a paper " on the comparative cerebral endowment of successful and unsuccessful tradesmen, in which several instances and facts, valuable to the science, were contributed. He has promised additional communications upon the subject at his earliest convenience.

19th December - The Rev. Henry Halford Jones in the chair. This being an especial annual meeting of the Society for receiving the report of the past year, and for the election of officers for the ensuing one, the reports of the Treasurer and Secretary were read and received, and the balloting then took place. Ultimately the following results were announced by the chairman:-Mr Daniel Noble, surgeon, President; Mr George Inglis, Treasurer; Mr Jonathan N. Rawson, Secretary ; Mr William Bally, artist, Curator ; Rev. H. H. Jones, Mr George Plant, surgeon, Mr Richard Anderson, surgeon, Mr Edmondson, Mr James Edmondson, and Mr John Stansfield, Council lors. The thanks of the Society were then given to the officers of the past year, and the Society adjourned to the 6th January 1895..!!

6th January 1835.--The Secretary read a paper “on the character and source of the disagreeable feeling suggested by the observation of uncleanliness of the person;" in which the Society ultimately thoughts after two evenings' discussion, that he had successfully shewn that the five external senses possess, like the intellectual faculties, perception, memory, and, probably, imagination. He examined the sources to which peculiar regard to cleanliness of the person is usually attributed, and shewed the deductions or conclusions to be unsatisfactory. After a brief description of the nature of the feeling experienced in uncleanliness, and the process of annoyance it occasions, he expressed the conclusion at which he had arrived to be," that the source of

[ocr errors]

that abhorrence which some display at the sight of uncleanliness, or of extreme regard to cleanliness at the same time manifested, is the peculiar acuteness of the sense of touch or feeling in some degree, in joint operation with the observing powers."

27th January-The life of Caspar Hauser was read by the Secretary, with a view to the eliciting of the opinions of the members, and inducing attention to that most interesting case. It is expected that it will lead to a more particular notice in the form of an essay. Your attention to these communications will oblige, Sir, your most obedient servant, for the Manchester Phrenological Society,

Jon. N. Rawson, Sec. We insert with much pleasure the foregoing communication. The Manchester phrenologists continue to prosecule their investigations with most commendable zeal and perseverance; and we rejoice to find that they are presided over by such an intelligent and well-informed phrenologist as Mr Noble appears to be. His “ Essay on the Means, Physical and Moral, of Estimating the Human Character," a copy of which Mr Rawson has kindly sent us, is excellently fitted to rectify the crude notions entertained by some as to the extent to which character is ascertainable from the mere size and form of the head, without regard to temperament, or inquiry into the kind of society in which the individual has moved, and his moral, religious, literary, and scientific education. The important influence of these circumstances in modifying the natural tendencies, though treated of in all the standard works on Phrenology, is too frequently neglected in practice; and the consequence is, that grave errors are committed, which, instead of being ascribed to the ignorance or rashness of the manipulator, are often regarded as demonstrative of the unsoundness of Phrenology itself. The present essay, therefore, in which these modifying circumstances are insisted on in detail, is calculated to be of great service in checking the folly of unthinking phrenologists; and we heartily recommend it to our readers, both for this reason and on account of its intrinsic excellence and soundness of doctrine. The pamphlet is sold by all the booksellers in Manchester, and also by our Edinburgh publisher. A short specimen may be given here.

With respect to the modifying effects of example, Mr Noble observes :" We all know how much mankind, especially in youth, are the creatures of imitation, and how much example influences the disposition in early years. We all know how habits, from this source, become formed, to which there was not any especial predisposition ; and how, when they have become so formed, they exist almost as a second nature, and this either for good or for evil. The great tendency in the inferior feelings of our nature to obtain a predominance is well known, and we may

« PredošláPokračovať »