when he learns that these same Peruvians, with brains of the average size of 73 cubic inches, had to contend with Europeans whose brains were 17 cubic inches greater. Their immense superiority of mental resources, intellectual grasp, and nervous energy, conferred on the Europeans a power before which the Peruvians became as sheep when the wolves have entered the fold. Numbers could not avail them. But we need not go to past centuries for confirmations of our principle. We see at the present day a small nation, the law-giver of a seventh part of all the inhabitants of the earth. “She girds the globe," says the Abbe de Pradt, “ with a chain of posts disposed with art around its circumference; thus placing every avenue under her control, and, as it were, under her key. From Heligoland to Madras, and from the Ganges to Hudson's Bay; at Jersey, at Gibralta, at Corfu, at Malta, at the Cape of Good Hope, at St. Helena, at the Isle of France, Ceylon, Antigua Trinidad, Jamaica, Halifax, every where, she is seated upon rock, or placed upon inaccessible islands; every where in safety herself, every where menacing others."

Whence comes the activity, the energy, the mightiness, the overshadowing influence of America's father-land? Let Professor Caldwell answer for the phrenologist. “Great Britain," says he, “is peopled chiefly by anglo-Saxons, the most highly endowed variety of the Caucasion race. Their brains are superior in size and more perfect in figures, than the brains of any other variety; and from temperament and exercise, they are in function the most powerful at least, if not the most active. And hence the surpassing strength and grandeur at home, and the influence and sway over the other nations of the earth, of those who possess them. The vast and astonishing productions of art in Great Britain, her boundless resources of comfort and enjoyment in peace, and her unparalleled means of defence and annoyance in war, are as literally the growth of the brains of her inhabitants, as her oaks, and elms, and ash trees are of her soil.” Let us look to Asia; there we see that England has subdued a hundred and twenty million of people, and that forty thousand of her sons retain them in subjection; one man in charge of three thousand! What shall explain this? The Hindoos were a civilized people, having a knowledge of letters and arts before Cæsar set foot upon Britain, or even the foundations of Rome were laid. How then shall this problem be solved? What great fact shall furnish us the key? We answer, the solution will be found in the cerebral superiority of the Anglo-Saxon, and in the superior physical activity, energy and prowess which accompanies such superiority. The Englishman has not only a better balanced brain than the Hindoo, but a brain exceeding that of the Hindoo, in average absolute bulk, more than fifteen cubic inches.

Correspondence of cerebral developement and mental power, is found every where on a broad scale, among the nations of the earth. Let these same Englishmen come into collision with people whose brains are nearly of the same size as their own, and what is the result? They have to provide man for man, to put forth all their energies, employ all their resources, and keep their sagacity on the stretch. If they gain a victory, it is accompanied by losses over which the victors themselves might well weep. Advantages are not often permanently retained; a triumphant advance is often but the precurser of a mortifying retreat; and when they have spent their energies in vain attempts at subjugation, they pantingly agree to a cessation of hostilities, that they may take breath and recruit their exhausted


and resources. How fare the subtle objections of Professor Smith against the phrenological doctrine of size, when the light of these great truths are concen: trated

upon them? They seem to us to hurry away like thin mists from

the sun's gaze.

" The functions of a part, whatsoever that function may be, is always performed with vigor proportioned to its bulk, and the greater or less supply of aeriated blood.” “We will concede something to the size of the head." “ Between individual and individual, mere bulk of head is an element of no appreciable importance.” “Intelligence will be in proportion to the projection of the frontal lobes," is the strangely contradictory language of Professor Smith. “Size, other things being equal, is the measure of power," is the uniform language of the phrenologist. Between the phrenologist and the professor, let the reader judge.

At the close of this argunient in relation to size, let us caution the inquirer against an error of Cuvier, Tiedemann, and others, namely, that of taking general size of brain as the measure of intellectual power. Intellectual power depends on the developement of the frontal lobe alone, and this may be small or large in relation to the other regions of the brain. The Hindoos with their very small brains, have a comparatively full developement of the anterior region, and they manifest much intellectual ingenuity with little force of character. Most of the North American Indians, on the contrary, with their comparatively large brains, have an overwhelming developement of the basilar and posterior regions, and with little intellectual and feeble moral power, they have immense force of the propensities. They are almost incapable of appreciating the arts, the intellectual and moral delights of civilized nian, but they áre haughty, unyielding, fierce, indomitable and blood-thirsty; they may be overpowered but not subdued, exterminated but not enslaved. We can merely verge on this interesting subject as an enforcement of the caution above given.

Professor Smith opposes phitenology on the ground, also, that if the the influence of temperaments be admitted, the cerebral organs are unnecessary. "A reference to temperaments would seem fatal,” says he, “ since, if it bé conceded that our mental qualities depend upon causes unconnected with the organs and paramount to their influence, why introduce superfluous machinery? Why not dispense with the organs altogether!" What is temperament that such language as this should be used concerning it? So far as phrenology is concerned, it signifies those conditions of the animal economy which modify the influence of size on the vigor, vivacity, and energy of the cerebral organs. To prétend, therefore, that the organs are superfluous because we have the temperaments, is a sheer absurdity. As well might it be pretended that steam engines are superfluous because we know the various qualities on which their strength and efficiency depend, and by the varying power of steam under various degrees of pressure. To be sure, the absurdity is not Dr. Smith's if it be conceded that our mentář qualities depend upon causes unconnected with the organs." But this, so far from being conceded, is explicitly and unconditionally denied. We contend that no influence can reach the mind except through the cerebral organs; that no mental quality is in the very slightest degree affected by any cause which does not affect one or more of these organs pari passu. Leave out of view the doctrine of the brain's complexity, and all this is fully admitted by the professor himself. “I believe the brain," says he, “ to be connected with the mind so far like cog-work in mechanics, that movements originating as they may in the one, are necessarily communicated to the other." pp. 81.

But Professor Smith further contends that the phrenological view of the brain's organization entirely excludes temperaments from consideration. His argument is, that the modifying power of the blood over size, constitutes temperament, and that the phrenologist is precluded from considering this modifying power, “because," says he, " in that case, phrenology and fact would be brought into collision; for, according to that interpretation of the word, where cautiousness' is large and predominent, a man should become less timid as the play of his lungs is impeded, or as the quantity of vital fluid passing to his head diminishes. While on the contrary, his cowardice should augment if more impetuous torrents, or blood more highly aerated, were driven through his craven




organization-results, in either case, directly opposed to the truth, as every one knows."

In the first place, we remark that the function of the organ of Cautiousness is not to manifest "cowardice," and that the organization in which it is found, is not necessarily a “ craven organization.” Cautiousness is the quality which this organ manifests, and among those who have possessed this quality in a high degree, are some of the greatest statesmen and generals that the world has produced.

We remark, in the second place, that the phrenologist does not mean" that the quantity and quality of the blood are most important items in the sum of those influences to which he applies the term temperament, put they do not of themselves constitute that sum. Nor does Professor Smith himself in his introductory lecture maintain this ; on the contrary, he speaks of the influence of the liver, spleen, muscles, fat, skin, and other parts, often granting far more to these influences than correct observation will warrant. Thus, in speaking of the influence of the liver over mental manifestations, he assures us that one condition of this viscus renders a person "cold, cautious, calculating," " his temper suspicious," " he neither believes in friendship nor possesses friends." Another condition of this viscus, indicates its possessor to be “the most contemptible being that inhabits the earth. He is poor, weak, mean and malicious; devoid of every noble sentiment, of every generous feeling." Another condition is indicative of men of strong minds and glowing imaginations.” Another produces “your ordinary hypochondriac, who is tormented with a thousand ridiculous fears and fancies which have no foundation except in his own imagination.” Were such views of the influence of this viscus correct, the brain would be wrongly styled the organ of the mind; and the inquiry, “How is your liver ?" one of Laura's first questions to her long lost husband Beppo, would be so far removed from the ludicrous as to constitute one of the most tender, considerate, philosophical and important inquiries which it were possible to make.

It is worthy of remark, that this professor who has taken upon himself the office of public rebuker of the cautious, fact-gathering, nature-studying phrenologist, gravely attributes all these startling influences to the liver, without the slightest attempt to prove that there is in truth and in fact any peculiar size, form, structure, or degree of consistency in this viscus, or any peculiar color, quality, or quantity of its secretion, connected with any of the peculiarities of disproportion of which he so confidently treats. We are not informed that at the foundation of this swelling and highly wrought fabric, even a single physiological observation exists!

VOL. III.-26.

We will now grant, for the sake of the argument, that the modifying influence of the blood is all that is meant by temperament. How then will stand the professor's objections? According to phrenology, says he "where Cautiousness is large and predominant, a man should become less timid as the play of the lungs is impeded, or as the quantity of the vital fluid passing to his head diminishes, while on the contrary, his cowardice should augment if more impetuous torrents or blood more highly aerated were driven through his craven organization--results, in either case,” he continues " directly opposed to the truth, as every one knows." That is, he maintains that fear, or " timidity," bears an inverse ratio to the quantity and aeration of the blood passing to the head." Let us examine his objection.

Observe, in the first place, that the professor does not state a proposition maintained by the phrenologist, or logically deducible from their doctrines. He consounds the organ of Cautiousness with the “ HEAD," a rather clumsy mistake! He might, perhaps, have stated the phrenologists to be bound by the proposition that “a man should become less cautious or fearful as the quantity of vital fluid passing to the organ of Cautiousness (not the head) diminishes; while on the contrary, his cautiousness, fear or desire of safety should augment if more impetuous torrents or blood more highly aerated were driven (not through his craven organization, but through his organ of Cautiousness." This last proposition we might own and defend, but as it is not that of which Professor Smith asserts the falsehood, we are not called upon for a reply.

We will, however, go further than we are bound, and for the sake of showing the want of precision in the professor's physiological views, take up the so called phrenological proposition nearly as the professor has stated, and we assert that though less definitely expressed than desirable, so far is it from being " directly opposed to the truth, as every one knows," that it is essentially true, as every enlightened physiologist and pathologist knows. Fear is a positive mental emotion, and like all other such emotions, it is accompanied by cerebral excitement proportioned to its intensity, and this cerebral excitement is accompanied by a corresponding determination of blood to the “ head.” Is proof of this needed? Look on the fear-stricken being and say whether any one symptom indicates repose or evinces diminished arterial or cerebral excitement. Is it the palpitating heart or flurried pulse? Is it the intense expression, the wild, restless eye of alarm, or terror's fixedness of gaze? Surely not. The pallid countenance perhaps? This, on the contrary, proves that the equilibrium of the circulation is broken up,


« VorigeDoorgaan »