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Such appear to have been the characteristics of this Egyptian girl, so far as they can be deduced from her skull, and on the presumption that the organic constitution of her brain was good. But, ignorant as we are of the training of children in ancient Egypt, and of the degree in which their religious opinions tended to excite particular faculties, it would be rash to affirm that the foregoing remarks may not be erroneous in some of their minor details.
STIS, Į). :))
Lihat OBSERVATIONS ON THE PHRENOLOGICAL STANDARD OF:
Social civilization is the intellectual and moral improvement of the individuals of which a nation is composed. The progress of a nation in civilization must, therefore, keep even pace with the degree of approximation of its members to that use of the faculties of man for wbich these faculties were bestowed, for civilization is essentially that right use. These faculties are in abuse, in different degrees, directly as the animal propensities preponderate over the right-regulated intellectual faculties and moral sentiments. Of three eras or stages in man's history, namely, the Savage, the Barbarous, and the Civilized, this animal preponderance distinctly marks the first and second. The ancients adopted a tripartite division also,--two eras of which they considered as past,--the golden age of innocence and peace, in other words, of pure morality; the silver age, of a deteriorated morality; and their own period of moral degeneracy, which they termed the iron age. While we deny the golden age as ever having been, and tie silver age as even yet past, we admit the age of iron as an accurate character of ancient times and all that had preceded them; and we have no objections to adopt the characteristic names of the Golden, Silver, and Iron ages, only inverting the order adopted by the ancients. The Iron age is the infancy of society. It divides itself into the Savage and the Barbarous, with a sort of analogy to the legal division of nonage into pupilarity and minority. Savage life is unqualified animalism, as is well testified by all our nautical discoverers. It is difficult to trace in their descriptions of the dispositions and conduct of savages, excepting perhaps attachment to their young, any thing higher than sensuality, cunning, covetousness, revenge and cruelty, pride, vanity, obstinacy, and superstition. An act of well-distinguished and unmixed benevolence is rarely to be found recorded of the savage; and if he manifests the
faintest perception of justice, his Conscientiousness operates in invariable combination with an inordinate Self-Esteem, which demands justice, but makes no return of it. The feeblest endow. ment of Conscientiousness is adequate to this selfish feeling of justice; while the rights of others are unsafe in its hands, it complains bitterly of the slightest invasion of its own. The occupations of the savage, after he has constructed his but with its rude furniture, his weapons, his canoe, his dress and ornaments, are, scarcely with any variation, destructive. Without agriculture, he gathers the spontaneous fruits of the earth, and destroys wild animals for food; and, when in a very low and ferocious savage state, he devours his fellow-men. Gorged with food, he sleeps, or lies in lethargic ease, till the instinct of food róuses him to take his bow and lance for fresh destruction. Excited by offended Self-Esteem, his Destructiveness becomes active; and revenge, another word for the combination of these two impulses, impels him to destroy his enemy in war. He is proud and vain of his prowess, valour, and address; and glory, the aim of the savage's Self-Esteem and Love of Approbation, prompts him to fight even when he has no injury to revenge. He is not yet aubitious, or desirous of conquest,--the result of Act quisitiveness added to the love of glory,—for his enemy offers him nothing to plunder but bis scalp; territory is not yet an object of desire or appropriation, beyond a new settlement of his tribe in better hunting ground, after he has dispossessed, by destroy. ing them, the former occupants. Covered with glory and blood, the savage feasts, and eagerly seeks the luxury of intoxication, if he possesses the fermented liquor or the drug, and falls down in sleep and lethargy. His very love is sometimes mixed with Secretiveness and Combativeness. He carries off bis bride by cunning and force : the New Hollander steals towards the woman he courts, springs upon her like a wild-cat, stupifies her with blows, and in that state drags her home. The government instrument is the club of the strongest savage, the ipso facto chief,--the origin, by the way, of the mace of the Lord Chancellor.
The Barbarous period of the iron age may be said to date its commencement with the rude culture and appropriation of land, and the building of cities. Tradition never begins earlier, for savages leave no records. We know nothing of the Jews, Greeks and Romans as savages. We bave a glimpse of Nimrod as a mighty hunter, but we find him and his daughter building the walls of Nineveh. We have no better than a hazy picture of the naked and painted bodies of our own British ancestors, not from themselves, but in the descriptions of a more advanced people who visited and subdued them. The patriarchs were shepherds with territory, flocks, and herds, while cities abounded around
them. The heroic age of Greece, as it is called, was an age of cities, and kings, and councils, and a city which, like Troy, stood a siege of ten years, must have been something niore than a huddle of mud huts. This was a great improvement upon the savage era. While there was, on the one hand, a decided advance in knowledge and reflection, and a corresponding increase of physical power and resource, there was, on the other, just enough of that conventional mutual forbearance, dictated by expediency more than conscientiousness, without which the rudest social rights could not be respected, and society would be dissolved. This mutual forbearance was secured by the despotic government of a chief, who, reserving to himself the power of being as unjust and cruel as he pleased, enforced that degree of honesty and mercy among his subjects, which is essential to their existence in the same community. The club-law of the savage was exchanged for the sway of the magistrate; and civil liberty, if it was known at all in the barbarous period, held a direct ratio to the extent of control which fixed law exerted over the will of the ruler or rulers. It is evident that the barbarous age has occupied a large portion of the historical period of the human race, that period not much exceeding three thousand years. In truth, it extended to a very recent day in modern times, even in the few nations which can be said to have outgrown it. The Greeks and Romans were barbarians from the first epoch to the last hour of their history, and were extinguished in their own barbarism. These communities passed through many stages of social progress. The human intellect never developed itself more brilliantly. In no age or nation have men of more splendid talents appeared-more gifted statesmen, lofty orators, graphic historians, ingenious philosophers, consummate generals, able lawyers, sublime poets, exquisite artists, and, considering the state of physical science, more skilful mechanicians. Their cities were models of architectural grace and symmetry; their ways and aqueducts were stupendous; their temples, their theatres, their palaces, have no parallels in modern times. Elegance and luxury were carried to their very acmé among them. The Roman armies were the most tremendous engines of human power ever produced by human combination. The description given by Josephus of the force which invaded Judea, and destroyed Jerusalem, impresses us with the idea of the art-military improved to its ne plus ultra in discipline, tactics, promptitude, and co-operation ; as if it had been one complicated, yet simply and irresistibly acting machine of iron and steel. We are accustomed to associate all that is graceful with Greece, and all that is powerful with Rome; we were early told that the world was refined by the one, and prostrated by the other ; we were trained from boyhood almost to worship their books,
and the very languages in which they are written; we are familiar with venerable institutions and princely endowments in our own island for the study of these languages alone, while Greek and Roman wisdom, valour, patriotism, and virtue, have been to us as household words.
It is time for us to try all this by another standard, and one which, had we been educated on right principles, we would have applied long ago. This may be summed up in a word,-genuine, practical, Christian morality was unknown in Greece and Rome. Mercy and justice did not form the foundation, or the actuating principles of their institutions, their polity, or their private life. The virtue of their republics was a mere mode of self-exaltation, called patriotism, which was accompanied with gross injustice and cruelty to all other nations ; while a pampered appetite for military glory, and a systematic grasping ambition, produced almost perpetual war for conquest and plunder, with all the horrors and miseries of that worst form of crime. The Roman share in these wars, with a few exceptions of retributive invasions by the more powerful victims of their injustice, was exclusively aggressive. The nation, and every individual of which it was composed, either joined in, or heartily sympathized with, these grand outrages of moral principle. Hence war, bloodshed, pride, ambition, with an insatiable rapacity, formed the basis of the Roman character, actuated their policy, controlled their education, and constituted their very being. This is what we mean by Roman barbarism. It differed from the savage state only in the improved combination of extended intellect, which enlarged its range, and increased its power of evil. Poets sang its abominations as the acme of human glory, --for there is no greater test of barbarism than to be blind to its own features, and mistake its crimes for virtues. Orators lauded the deeds of blood and rapine, in which sometimes as soldiers they had borne a part ; and listening senates hung upon their lips, as they fed io fulness, the coarsest appetites of national vanity and selfishness. Historians were ready with their penis to record the proud crimes of their countrymen in their imperishable pages; and philosophers systematized a spurious virtue out of the lower impulses of human nature. Such was the actual national practice from the days of Romulus to those of Constantine. We say the practice, for there were minds in Greece and Rome which could not fail to see and appreciate a higher morality than the selfishly-patriotic and belligerent; and accordingly we have the philosophers of the Academy and the Porch, with their Roman pupils, Cicero and Seneca. Their speculations seem to have existed as elegant contemplations for literary leisure, which no one dreamed of rendering practical, or of applying to humanize the private lives or public policy of his countrymen. When, however, the speculations themselves are brought to the Christian and Phrenological standard, they are found to be a most dwarfish morality. These systems,—with the exception of the morality of Epictetus and Marcus Antoninus, wbich is of the highest cast, and eminently practical, consist of vague declamations about virtue, which lose all practical force in mere generalities, and exhibit a striking contrast to the precision of the ethics of Phrenology. The philosophers themselves have not condemned, and, we may suppose, regularly attended the savage exhibitions of the amphitheatre. Pompey slaughtered in five days 500 lions, for the public gratification, in his second consulate. In honour of Trajan's victories over the Dacians, 11,000 wild beasts were killed in the Circus, and 10,000 gladiators fought, of whom the one-half at least must have perished, Whole days were spent by the citizens of all ranks in the Circus, witnessing the combats, with breathless interest, and feasting their eyes with blood and torture. There never existed on earth a more bloodthirsty people than the admired Romans. The gross sensuality of the ancients, and the corruption which arose out of and ministered to it, the want of honesty which characterized public and private life, was uller barbarism in the midst of all the gorgeousness of merely physical civilization. Morally they were uncivilized, and, as the course of the selfish faculties in predominance is downwards, they gradually sank, and ultimately perished.
The destroyers of the Romans were not less barbarians than the Romans themselves. They chanced for the time to possess more physical force, and barbarism prevailed in the dark ages, and the chivalric period, and that in our own country of Britain, with slight admixture of civilization, down to the other day. We need no other characteristic of barbarism than a state of constant aggressive war, of wholesale murder and plunder, as objects national and individual, with which the intermediate period between the ancients and our own times, has been nearly filled. In point of what we have called physical civilization, even the destroyers of the Roman empire were immensely behind i he Romans, from whom indeed they borrowed any remnants which their own Destructiveness had spared ; and although physical improvement advanced, we are accustomed to characterize our ancestors in Britain, till within the two last centuries, as barbarous even in the arts of life, to say nothing of their moral condition.
Many deep stains of the moral barbarism of our ancestors yet inhere in our institutions, customs, habits, and modes of thinking; but some redeeming benevolence and conscientiousness have mingled in these habits and modes, and gradually improved the moral condition of the last 150 or perhaps 200 years, so as