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incapacity to retain it, I have seen it small. It is a curious fact, that Mr OWEN of New Lanark maintains, that the desire for wealth, or individual property, is not a natural instinct of the human mind; and in his own head, this organ, like that of Destructiveness, the feeling attached to which he also denies, is by no means largely developed. So differently do those feel in whom Acquisitiveness is large, that they desire to acquire for the mere sake of acquisition. If a person so endowed be owner of fifty acres, it will give him infinite delight to acquire fifty more; if of one thousand or one hundred thousand, he will still be gratified in adding to their number. His understanding may be perfectly convinced that he already possesses ample store for every enjoyment, and abundant provision against every want; but yet, if this faculty be active, he will feel his joys impaired, if he ceases to amass. This explains the insatiable nature of the passion to acquire, and the source also of the disappointment generally experienced by persons whose lives have been devoted to commerce, when they retire from business with a view to enjoy the fruits of their industry. The gratification of Acquisitiveness in accumulating wealth, constituted the chief pleasure of their previous lives; and when this propensity ceases to be indulged, and no other faculty has been cultivated with equal ardour, ennui and disgust are the natural and unavoidable results of their new situation.
It has been stated, as an objection to this propensity, that property is an institution of society, and that an organ cannot exist in the brain for a factitious desire. The answer to this argument is, that the idea of property springs from the instinctive suggestions of the faculty in question; and that the laws of society are the consequences, and not the causes, of its existence. They are intended to regulate the desires of mankind for possessions; but this purpose clearly supposes such desires antecedently to exist.
Many persons, in whom Benevolence and Love of Approbation are large, as well as Acquisitiveness, can, with
difficulty, believe that the latter influences their feelings. They are so ready to disburse and to bestow that they never accumulate, and hence persuade themselves that they have no tendency to acquire. But such persons are keen in their dealings, they cheapen in making purchases, know where bargains are to be óbtained; and, on consulting their own minds, will find that schemes of acquiring property frequently haunt their imaginations. They are also prone to admire the rich. Persons, on the contrary, in whom the organ is small, think of every thing with more interest, and pursue every object with more avidity, than wealth. They may be industrious to live, but there is no intense energy in their pursuit of gain; and their fancies, in building castles in the air, rarely erect palaces of gold, or place happiness in hordes of accumulated riches..
The effects of this faculty are greatly modified by the strength of Self-Esteem. The propensity in question desires to acquire; Self-Esteem produces the love of self; the two conjoined, give rise to the Love of Acquisition for selfgratification; and if both organs be large, the individual will have a strong tendency to sordid selfishness, unless the moral and reflecting powers be particularly active and energetic. The passion for uniques also seems to arise from this combination.
Dr GALL states this organ to be little developed in the skulls of the Caribs. In accordance with this, travellers say that they are little prone to theft; and, therefore, says ROCHESTER, in his History of the Antilles, when they are robbed, they always insist that it must have been by a Christian. The Negroes are also little prone to steal, and the organ is moderately developed in them. Dr GALL had an opportunity of observing among the Spanish troops, that both the Arragonese and Castilians have the anterior part of the temporal region a good deal flattened, denoting a small Acquisitiveness; and he was assured that they are the most faithful servants, and equally incapable of stealing as of lying. The Kalmucks, again, are the very opposite. They have been renowned for thieving and bad
faith; and in accordance with this, BLUMENBACH, an opponent of Phrenology, in describing the Kalmuck skull, observes, that it projects in the region of Acquisitiveness, "capita ad latera extantia." Dr GALL possesses two Kalmuck skulls, and both correspond with BLUMENBACH'S description. Dr SPURZHEIM also tells us, " that a young Kalmuck, brought to Vienna by Count STAHRENBERG, became melancholy, because his confessor, who instructed him in religion and morality, had forbidden him to steal. He got permission to steal, on condition that he should give back what he had stolen. The young man, profiting by this permission, stole his confessor's watch during high mass, but joyfully returned it after mass was over.”
It is difficult to conceive a miser without a great endowment of this propensity, although an individual may be a thief with a moderate portion of it. Avarice arises from Acquisitiveness, raised to the height of a passion. Theft implies a want of regulating and directing influence from the moral faculties, as much as an excessive and intense desire to acquire property for the sake of possessing it. Strong sensual propensities, which cannot be gratified without money, may lead individuals to resort to theft as a means of supplying their wants, without the love of property itself being strong; but Conscientiousness must be weak, and Secretiveness powerful, before such an expedient can be resorted to.
The existence of this organ throws light on the tendency to steal, which some individuals, whose external circumstances place them far above temptation, manifest in a remarkable degree. In them, it seems to be in a state of diseased activity, and not to be controlled by the moral and reflecting faculties. Dr GALL mentions several cases of diseased affections of this propensity. M. KNEISLER, governor of the prison of Prague, spoke to him and Dr SPURZHEIM about the wife of a rich merchant, who stole continually from her husband in the most adroit manner, and who was at last shut up in a house of correction, which she had scarcely left, when she stole again, and was again confined.
She was condemned to a third and longer imprisonment, and again commenced her operations in the jail itself. With the utmost address, she made a hole in the stove, which heated the apartment in which the money was deposited, and committed repeated depredations, which were soon noticed. Every means were adopted to detect the offender, and bells were suspended at the doors and windows, but all in vain. At length a spring-gun was set, the wire of which was connected with the strong box. She was so dreadfully frightened by its explosion, that she had not time to escape through the stove. At Copenhagen, Drs GALL and SPURZHEIM saw an incorrigible thief, who sometimes distributed the produce of his larcenies to the poor; and, in another place, a robber, who was in confinement for the seventh time, assured them with sorrow, that he felt himself unable to act otherwise. He begged to be detained in prison, and to be provided with the means of supporting himself.
At Munster, a man was condemned to imprisonment for eight years, on account of some robberies:-He was no sooner liberated than he committed fresh depredations, and was thereupon imprisoned for life. Sixteen years thereafter he revealed a conspiracy which had been formed among the criminals, and it was proposed to reward him by setting him free. The judge objected to this, that it would be dangerous to do so, as the man himself had previously assured him that his thievish propensity was so rooted in his constitution that he could not by any possibility resist it. About a year after, he escaped from prison, betook himself to his old practices, and was again arrested; shortly after which he hanged himself. "During ten years that I have known this man in the prison," said WERNEKING, from whom Drs GALL and SPURZHEIM got these details," he was remarkable for activity and devotion during divine service; but I learnt after his death, that he had constantly been committing theft, even in the prison itself."
Dr GALL mentions, that, among the young men confined
in one of the prisons of Berlin (Stadtvogtey), one in particular attracted the attention of Dr SPURZHEIM and himself. They strongly recommended never to set him at liberty, as they thought it impossible he could ever abstain from stealing. They explained their motives to the gentlemen who accompanied them, and, on examining the registers, the latter were much surprised to find that the man had from infancy manifested the strongest tendency to thieving. The organs of the higher sentiments were extremely deficient, while that of Acquisitiveness had acquired the highest degree of development and energy. Its activity was also greatly aided by his immense endowment of Secretiveness. The man himself was little and deformed; his forehead "villanously low," and depressed backwards imme diately above the eyebrows, but the lateral regions, or temples, were broad and prominent. In such a case no phrenologist would hesitate to give the same advice.
In the prison at Berne, Dr GALL and SPURZHEIM saw a rickety and badly organized boy of twelve years of age, who could not refrain from stealing; and who, with his pockets filled with his own bread, purloined that of others. At Haina, the officers spoke to them about an incorrigible robber, named FESSELMAYER, whom no punishment could amend. He stole in prison to such an extent, that a mark was put upon his arm, that all might be upon their guard against him. Before seeing him, Drs GALL and SPURZHEIM stated what his development ought to be, and their prediction was verified at the first glance. He had the appearance of being sixteen, although he was in reality twentysix years of age. His head was round, and about the size of that of an infant of one year. He was, moreover, deaf and dumb,
Numerous examples of the diseased activity of this propensity occur in all lunatic asylums, and afford strong proof of the independent existence of the faculty and organ. PiNEL tells us, that it is a matter of common observation, that men who, in their lucid intervals, are justly consider