« VorigeDoorgaan »
nearer. Pleasant suggestions can be pro- been cut out of a piece of red paper. If duced with equal ease and certainty by this red cross be placed upon a white gesticulations of a different nature. To ground, and the eyes be fixed on it for suggest by verbal affirmation is naturally some seconds and then removed, and a still more complete and effective method. again fixed upon a different part of the Verbal suggestions, indeed, can, as every white ground, the image of a pale-green one knows, be made to subsist and take cross becomes visible, to disappear after effect after the re-awakening of the patient. a few moments. This is called a
It is easy to gain some knowledge of secutive image.” The same result may the mechanism of these phenomena by be obtained if, instead of an actual cross inquiring what effect the same means of cut out of red paper, the image of a red suggestion would have upon persons in a cross be fixedly contemplated in the mind; normal condition. At once it will become the pale-green cross will again become apparent that the same act which in a visible on subsequently casting the eye on hypnotized patient produces hallucinations a white surface. "M. Wundt, the eminent would only occasion in a normal mind the physiologist of Leipzig, confirms this fact, very simple phenomenon of an “idea.” that certain persons can so strongly figure Let us, for example, try to persuade a to themselves any given color that they friend who has a book in his hand that it can afterwards see its consecutive image. is not a book, but a knife. He will simply Such persons, however, are, in the normal smile. We have, consequently, not suc- state, very rare, so that Wundt's expericeeded in communicating any hallucina- ment is best verified by means of hypnotion to his mind. He knows he has a tism and suggestion. The hypnotized book in his hand, and does not take it for patient is caused to believe that he peranything else. Yet our attempt at sug- ceives a red image; he is then told to gestion has produced a certain effect upon look at a white surface, and immediately him. He has understood what we were declares, of his own accord, that he see's speaking of - we have spoken of a knife, the green consecutive image. and have, therefore, given him the idea of This experiment might be considered to
If only for one brief instant, he has show that the seat of mental imagery in conceived the idea, has seen the image, of the brain is the same as that of sensation. a knife in somebody's hand. The sole There is, however, another possible con. difference between him and the hypnotized clusion, namely, that as a consequence of patient is that the image in one case has the infinite number of times of our having been very slight, and has not been accom-unconsciously perceived consecutive im. panied by anything in the nature of con- ages (for whenever we have looked long at viction; whereas in the other it has taken any red object, a green “consecutive ” has full possession of the mind, has been afterwards arisen for a moment, though projected, and has for the nonce appeared our conscious attention may not have to constitute a material reality.
dwelt upon the phenomenon) some obThus it may be said that our minds are scure mental association may have been always filled with the germs of ballucina. formed between the idea of red and that tions, as it were, and that these germs are of green, which would suffice, under the what we call our ideas. Hypnotic experi. hypnotic circumstances mentioned above, ments clearly demonstrate the close con. to call up one as the corollary of the other. nection which exists between images, perceptions, and hallucinations.
v. then, is one important fact established by We have seen that first introspection, hypnotical researches and study.
then the analysis of mental maladies, then The second fact is much less frequent, statistical observation, and finally hypnoand can only be observed in certain hys. tism have been employed as means of terical patients who have been carefully studying the true nature of mental im. trained beforehand to give account of their agery. Of late years still another method impressions. The experiment consists in of investigation has been employed, con. provoking visual sensations which, by sisting in the study of the aberrations of their nature and the method of their pro- the faculty of speech, to which the generic duction, serve to explain the processes of name of « aphasia"'is given. M. Ribot mental imagery. But, before entering into is one of the first writers who have refurther details, it may be well to describe garded the phenomena of aphasia from what physiologists term "consecutive im- the psychological standpoint. "M. Charcot agery."
has followed in M. Ribot's footsteps, and Let us suppose that a small cross has his experiments in this connection have
enabled him to construct the remarkable | as a substitute for the image, which is not theory of the different types of memory evoked at all, or is evoked very indistinctiy. which has attracted so much attention in This fact it is which has led M. Charcot the scientific world. The chief result of and his pupils, who have had so many these researches of M. Charcot's has cases of aphasia under their observation, been to demonstrate the number of differ- to study the question of “interior speech." ent forms assumed by human thought. If we closely examine the operations of Roughly speaking, it might almost be said our mind while we are thinking we shall that no human being thinks in exactly the perceive that a sort of interior voice spoke same way as any other, so that evidently within us whilst we thought. This voice the results of introspection as a method does not accompany our thought simply, of psychological inquiry can have only an but is, in fact, our thought itself. Its individual and not a general or typical action and nature have been carefully value. A few examples will make our studied by the sagacious psychologist, M. meaning clearer.
Egger, and he has shown beyond a doubt In all our foregoing observations, only that the interior voice is only the reflection, one style of thought has been considered, or repetition, of the real voice. With many that of the visual image. We have taken persons interior speech is more than a it for granted that most persons see, as it simple phenomenon of mental audition ; were, the thing they think of. But the it is accompanied by a sensation in the sense of sight is not the only one which mouth and lips, as though words were affects the consciousness. The other about to be spoken ; and sometimes whis. senses may also serve as the basis of com- pered words will accompany the act of plex psychological operations. There is, meditation. for example, a memory connected with the Other persons, again, do not thus speak sense of hearing, as appears in the case of their thought when thinking, but as it musicians. Auditive imagery must exist, were write it. Words appear to them un. therefore, as well as visual, and there may der the guise of written symbols. If they also be a certain process of auditive rea- think of a hat, for example, they will see soning, that is to say, a process of thought the word "hat” in written or printed lethaving sound for its object, as other men-ters. tal processes have for their object things Altogether it may be said that there are which come within the scope of vision. two principal modes of thought: that Having said thus much, let us suppose which deals with material objects, and that the word “bell” is pronounced in that which deals with words. Under some one's hearing. What will be the either of these two general divisions varieffect of this word upon this person's ous styles of memory may occur, and thus mind? If in the habit of using visual we obtain the four following types: memory he or she will form a notion of (1) The visual, characterized by the use the bell as a visible object, with its contour of visual images in all the operations of and its color. But if the nature of the the mind and memory. This probably memory be auditive the idea of a bell will exists in the case of painters who can exe. connect itself with the remembrance of the cute a person's portrait after having seen sound a bell gives forth. The latter that person only once. would naturally be the case with a blind (2) The auditive, which implies a spe. person, and, indeed, it need not be said cial memory for sounds, as in the case of that memory in the blind must always be most musicians. of the auditive type. And, finally, though (3) The motive, marked by the special this third case is undoubtedly much rarer use made of images derived from motion. than either of the other two, the word (4) The indeterminate, which exists “bell” may provoke in the mind of the when the different varieties of imagery hearer a reminiscence of the sensations of are employed alternately, according to contact and pression experienced in touch. occasion. ing a bell with the hand.
It is practically a matter of some diffiThus it appears that there are at least culty to determine with anything like acthree different ways of representing to curacy the particular type of memory in oneself a material object. But this does each individual. No very exact methods not exhaust the number of different types of inquiry exist at present in this respect. of memory; among which the verbal type We have lately had in France the opporis the most important. It has been ascer tunity of observing a very peculiar case tained that some persons think entirely by of auditive memory, in the person of a means of words. They employ the word | young mathematical prodigy, Jacques
Inaudi, who was brought before the Acad. parishes into ecclesiastical districts which emy of Sciences by M. Darboux, M. has taken place of late years, this sort of Charcot having been a member of the thing does not now often happen. committee appointed to examine into the It used to be a comical scene in those
The conclusion was promptly ar-old days. The only vestry the church in rived at by M. Charcot that Inaudi's mem- question possessed was a very small and inory is not of the visual, but of the auditive convenient one. So the wedding couples, type. Other mathematical prodigies, such attended by their admiring friends, used as Mondeux, Colburn, and Bidder, saw to wait in the church till their turn came the figures before them as they solved to be registered. Then the old clerk would their problems. Inaudi hears his figures usher them into the vestry, and stand as though they were being whispered into rubbing his back against the door, aphis ear. It would always have been parently an unconcerned spectator, while deemed impossible, prior to the observa- his daughter was filling up the registers tion of this particular case, that mental in the opposite corner. He iovariably calculations of the most enormous extent went through the following laconic method could be carried out solely by means of of extracting the necessary information: auditive images.
“Now, you, sir, what's your name? How old are you? Where do you live? What
do you do? Never been married afore? UPON reaching the conclusion of this What's your father's name? Is he alive brief sketch or summary of a very compli. or dead? What does he do? What's cated and interesting question, it will be her name? (with a nod towards the bride, seen at a glance what progress has been intended to intimate that now it was her made in the study of mental imagery since turn). How old is she? Where does the period when Hobbes described thought she live? She ever been married afore? as being simply a state of inward vision. What's her father's name? Is he alive
The whole present tendency of psycho- or dead? What does he do? Go into logical research is to show, not that the the church. Next couple.” Somehow or mental operations of all persons are of a another, as I have myself found out from similar nature, but that immense psycho. later experience, when attempting in my logical differences exist between different prosy, if more courteous, fashion to get individuals. In a word, the study of mind hold of the same information, the old man has entered of late years upon a new had exactly gauged the capacity of a large phase which may lead to singularly inter number of those with whom he had to do, estiog and important results.
and he usually got hold of the necessary ALFRED BINET. facts much more quickly and correctly by
the drastic method above mentioned than if he had wasted more words upon his task.
One day I was marrying a couple, and From The Cornhill Magazine.
this old fellow was standing just behind REMINISCENCES OF CLERICAL DUTY.
them in the church. As soon as I had I HAVE been a working parson in large uttered the words “I pronounce them man town parishes for more than a score of and wife together," the gentleman thought years, and during that period I have come it was a convenient opportunity to give across many strange specimens of human his wife a resounding kiss. The old clerk nature. Probably the most comical inci- did not approve of such goings on, and dents happen on the occasion of weddings. grumbled out in a very audible voice, It has been my lot to unite in the bonds * Now, then, behave yourselves.” My of holy matrimony many hundred couples, risible faculties were proof against the and the somewhat monotonous task of kiss, but this remark was too much for reading the service so often has been at me, and I fear that I smiled. times varied by amusing incidents.
I remember on another occasion when When I was first in orders it used I was performing the marriage ceremony, sometimes to fall to my lot as junior over a somewhat elderly gentleman of curate to marry couples by wholesale. very dull and stupid exterior, I could One Christmas day I married (I think) hardly get him married at all. When I twenty-three couples before breakfast, and told him to give me his right hand, he then went away, leaving one of the other gave me his left, when I said, “Say this curates to complete the task. Owing after me,” he immediately remarked " Say to the great subdivision of the ancient this after me." But when I came to the
words I wanted said, he was stolidly, my way. I promptly told them that I silent. At last he saw that I was some would have nothing to do with any of what bothered by his extreme stupidity, them, and shut up the books and left the so in the middle of the service he upsetchurch. The man was furious, and threatmy gravity by volunteering the following ened me with a prosecution, and all sorts apology : “You see, sir, it's so long since of terrible pains and penalties. But I I was married afore, that you must excuse never heard another word about him or my forgetting of these things.”
his amours from that day to this. It was once my lot to bave two young On another occasion a very grand wedladies in the church at the same time, both ding came to the church duly armed with wanting to be married to the same man. a marriage license. But the clerk on enOne of these would-be brides I found tering the particulars in the registers unwaiting for me in the vestry on my arrival fortunately discovered that the pet name at the church a few minutes before the of the bride had been put into that docu. time appointed for the ceremony to comment instead of the legal Christian name mence. She proceeded to explain to me which her godfather and godmothers had how she was engaged to the faithless swain given her at her baptism. We were in a who was about to appear with another fair fearful fix. The license was practically one, and how their baons had been put up no license at all, as the pet name and in the East End parish where they lived, the real name did not bear the remotest and all arrangements made for the wedding resemblance to one another. Again every to take place in due course. Meantime one began to talk at once, and we spent so she had discovered that her young man much time in this interesting but entirely had been carrying on with another young useless occupation that the fatal hour of woman, and had put up the banos in our noon got perilously near. It was proposed West End church, where he hoped that that the wedding should be postponed for no one would know anything about him. a day, while the mistake was rectified, but She had hardly finished this explanation this course was stoutly opposed by the when the young man in question walked bridegroom, who oddly enough adduced as in with that almost idiotic grin upon his his principal reason, "We shall look such face, so often assumed by "'Arries" on fools before the waiters if we go back un. such occasions, and with a most bouncing married.” At last it was proposed that we and gaily apparelled female on his arm. should go down to the police court, where The start of horror which came over his the magistrates were sitting, and get an intelligent countenance when he saw who affidavit sworn that “ Popsy” and “Lucy the parson had got with him in the vestry Victoria” were one and the same person. may be more easily imagined than de- If this were done I professed myself ready scribed. But I found myself in a very to proceed with the ceremony. Accordingdifficult position. Neither lady would ly, the bridegroom and I got into one of gracefully retire, and I was a young and the wedding carriages, drove with all speed bashful curate with no judgment in such to the town hall, and presented ourselves matters. We all sat down round the ves before the astonished eyes of the magistry table, and proceeded to discuss the trates there assembled. We explained situation at considerable length, both the our business, and one of the Great Unpaid would-be brides (as it is perhaps hardly who was assisting the stipendiary on the necessary to mention) continuing the con- bench at once most good-naturedly underversation in a high-pitched key at the same took to do our little business for us. An time. But we got no nearer to an amicable affidavit was drawn up, and sworn to in all settlement of the knotty point. Though haste, and back we galloped to the church I need hardly say that my sympathies just in time to begin the ceremony before went strongly with the lady who was first the clock struck twelve. By this perin the field, yet, unfortunately, “it is a formance I earned the everlasting gratitude free country we live in," and I was very of the bride and bridegroom, but I also much afraid that I should be obliged to brought down on my devoted head a conmarry the man to the only bride whom he siderable wigging from some official in was willing to accept. But while I cogi- London to whom the circumstances were tated the matter, it most fortunately came in due course reported. He told me the out in the course of the conversation that marriage was perfectly valid, but he also peither the man nor woman had ever really ordered me with some asperity “not to do “kept residence" by sleeping a single it again.” night in our parish. As soon as I dis. The church of which I have been speak. covered this important fact, I at once saw ing was in former times used for little else
on week days except weddings in the heard again of a clergyman who was so morning and funerals in the afternoon, and awkward that on the first occasion of his it is reported of the afore-mentioned clerk officiating at a wedding he stood the whole that on one occasion when a young lady time at the altar, and read the service exand gentleman called at his house, and actly as he found it in the Prayer-book, asked to go into the church for the pur- without inserting the names of the interpose of seeing it, he made so certain that ested parties. "1, M., take thee, N., to they could have come there but for one my wedded wife,” etc. I believe this was purpose, viz., to be joined together in holy declared to be a valid marriage, but I matrimony, that when they followed him think the officiating clergyman deserved a to the church they found to their consid- wigging quite as much, if not more, than erable dismay that he had got out the I did on the occasion of the mistake in marriage registers, and fetched one of the the marriage license above referred to. curates, so as to despatch their little busi. It frequently happens that when people ness as expeditiously as possible. Re- have been married before a registrar they port says they were brother and sister. afterwards develop qualms of conscience But this is supposed to have happened at this irregular method of entering into long before my time, and I decline to the wedded state, and come to the parson vouch for the authenticity of the narrative. and want to be married again in church.
People are often wonderfully ignorant The law specially provides in such cases or careless on all subjects connected with that any clergyman may read the marriage these interesting occasions. I have known service over such people, without the procouples present themselves at the church duction of a license or the publication of without having made any preliminary ar. banns, but of course he is not to enter rangements, saying that ihey knew I'was such marriages in the registers, as the a surrogate, and they thought that I could legal ceremony was complete before. It “sell them a license in the vestry be has happened to me to have to officiate in fore the service commenced. I was once such cases several times. But on one sent for by a young lady, who asked me occasion I was rather nonplussed by the “ whether it was legal to be married with answer I got to the question, “John, wilt. out bridesmaids,” and on my assuring her thou have this woman to thy wedded that it was, she proceeded to ask me the wife?” “Why, sir, I told you we was further question " whether I would be so married two years ago.” very kind as to marry her in her ordinary I have several times married a deaf and attire?” The common people have one dumb couple, but never to my knowledge peculiar habit of their own. When asked a deaf and dumb person to one who could io say after the officiating clergyman" with hear and speak. Sometimes I have used all my worldly goods I thee endow," they a slate, and written out the questions, frequently say " with all my worldly goods while they have written out the replies. I thee and thou.”
Sometimes I have had an interpreter, who But the stupidity is by no means always followed me in the service with the deaf on the side of the people. I once had a and dumb alphabet. But it is an awkward curate who got greatly obfuscated by the business at the best for an outsider, and number of the banos he was called upon now that there is a deaf and dumb clergyto publish one Sunday morning. So, man (whom I have had the pleasure of when at last he got through his task, he meeting), I think that all such weddings wound up by saying: “If any of you know ought to be his especial care in future. any just cause or impediment why all these I once married å lady of title who was persons may not respectably be joined to a spinster of seventy-one to a widower of gether in holy matrimony, ye are to declare seventy-three. On this occasion the it.” Of course he meant respectively, but parties procured a special license, with his mistake caused an audible titter from ihe view of being married in the after. certain of the younger members of the noon, when they thought they would congregation. It has twice happened to escape notice and be married "on the me that some one has risen up in the quiet.” But somehow or other the affair church for the purpose of forbidding the got wind, and excited (as was, perhaps, banns. I asked the objector to speak to but natural) extraordinary attention, and I me in the vestry after service, and the in- have seldom seen a church fuller at a cident passed off and seemed to make wedding than it was on that interesting little stir in the church at the time, but on occasion. The good old couple are both both occasions the fact was widely re. dead and gone now, but they lived to. ported in the London papers. I have gether for some years, and I always took