Imatges de pàgina

seem chiefly led by the hope of gaining money enough to return home, and buy a little property, even though the land should be dearer there than elsewhere! I therefore invite the phrenologists, who have an opportunity of visiting various nations, particularly fond of their country, to examine the development of the organ marked No. III., and situated immediately above Philoprogenitiveness. In all civilized nations, some individuals have a great predilection for residing in the country. If professional pursuits oblige them to live in town, their endeavour is to collect a fortune as speedily as possible, that they may indulge their leading propensity. I have examined the heads of several individuals of this description, and found the parts in question much developed."Phrenology, p. 126. The function, however, is stated by him as only conjectural. From a number of observations, the faculty appears to me to have a more extensive sphere of action, than that assigned to it by Dr SPURZHEIM.

• I have noticed that some persons possess a natural facility of con=; centrating their feelings and thoughts, without the tendency to be distracted by the intrusion of emotions or ideas foreign to the main point under consideration. Such persons possess a command over their feelings and intellectual powers, so as to be able to direct them in their whole vigour to the pursuit which forms the object of their study for the time ; and hence they produce the greatest possible results from the particular endowment which nature has bestowed on them. Other individuals, on the other hand, have been observed, whose feelings do not act in. combination, who find their thoughts lost in dissipation, who are unable to keep the leading idea in its situation of becoming prominence, are distracted by accessaries ; and, in short, experience great difficulty in combining their whole powers to a single object. The organ was perceived to be large in the former, and small in the latter.' pp. 77–78.

As a farther proof of the minuteness and accuracy of his observations, the learned author is afterwards pleased to tell us that he has remarked, that individuals in whom the organ is • small, although acute and steady in their general habits, have great difficulty in transcribing or engrossing papers correctly, '- and then proceeds with much naïveté to record, that

• The first idea that led me to the conclusion, that it is the tendency to concentrate the mind within itself, and to direct its powers in a combined effort to one object, was suggested by a lady, who had remarked this quality in individuals in whom the organ was large. The Reverend David Welsh and Dr Hoppe of Copenhagen, having been informed of these views, unknown to each other, communicated to me the inference, that the faculty gives a tendency to dwell in a place, or on feelings and ideas for a length of time ! till all, or the majority, of the other faculties, are satisfied in regard to them. Dr SPURZHEIM, however, objects to these ideas; and states, that his experience is in contradiction to them. Facts alone must determine between us.

The most profound and original part of the speculation, how,

pp. 79-81.

pp. 83.

ever, certainly consists in the following objection of Dr Spurz. heim, and our author's answer.

• Dr SPURZHEIM objects farther, that “no one, in concentrating his mind, and directing his powers to one object, exhibits gestures and motions indicating activity in the back part of the head ! the whole of the natural language shows, that concentration takes place in the forehead." With the greatest deference to Dr SPURZHEIM's superior skill and accuracy, I take the liberty of stating, that, so far as my own observation goes, those persons who really possess the power of concentration, while preparing to make a powerful and combined exertion of all their powers, naturally draw the head and body backwards in the line of this organ! Preachers and advocates in whom it is large, while speaking with animation, move the head in the line of Concentrativeness and Individuality! or straight backwards and forwards, – as if Concentrativeness supplied the impetus, and the organs in the forehead served as the instruments to give it form and utterance.'

These passages, we really think, decisive as to the merits of the system which they are meant to illustrate. That three men, all of more than common acuteness, should thus write nonsense, as it were in competition with each other, can only be explained, we think, by the extreme and incurable absurdity of the theory they had undertaken to support. That theory made it necessary for them to find out some primitive faculty of the mind, to give employment to a large bump on the skull

, which it obliged them to consider as an organ of the intellect; and, to such extremities are they reduced in devising such a faculty, that one of them actually gives that denomination to a supposed propensity to inhabit high places, which he poetically identifies with pride; another to some undefined, and undefinable, peculiarity of disposition with regard to dwelling places—which, it seems, may take the shape either of a love for one's native country, or a taste for rural situations—or, for any thing we can see, a preference of brick houses to buildings of stone; and the third to the power, generally, of concentrating our thoughts on any given subject, which is much the same thing as if any one were to tell us that, besides the faculty of seeing, he had ascertained that we had another, which enabled us to look fixedly on the things before us—and that this faculty had an organ of its own, quite away from the eye, and somewhere below the ear.

We shall say nothing of the reasonings and observations on which this notable discovery is said to be founded-except merely to recall to our reader's recollection that admirable test to which both Dr Spurzheim and our author concur in referring--though they unfortunately differ in an extraordinary way as to the result of its application. When a faculty is in a state of activity, they seem both to take it for granted, that the individual must “ make motions and gestures, in the line or direction of its external organ; and while Dr S. objects that men who are merely concentrating their thoughts, do not indicate any activity in the back part of the head, where the organ of this faculty is situated, Mr Combe, admitting both the fact and the principle, ingeniously evades the conclusion, by suggesting that the operation of this faculty is generally conjoined—though heaven knows how or why--with that of Individuality—which has its seat in the anterior part of the skull; and that the two together consequently draw the unhappy patient alternately in both directions--which is his most recondite solution of the fact, that preachers and other orators are apt, when speaking with animation, to move their heads both backwards and forwards alternately!- which we should humbly conceive they must necessarily do, if they move them oftener than once in either of the opposed directions. The great practical truth however is, that when any faculty is in a state of activity, the head at least, if not the whole body, is moved in the direction of the external organ of that faculty. The test, it is obvious, cannot be well applied to the organs which happen to be placed in the anterior parts of the head; because, as we naturally see and speak, and walk and bend, in that direction, it would plainly be impossible to distinguish what part of our forward movements were to be ascribed to these causes, and what to the mere activity of the intellectual organs. With regard, again, to those that are placed laterally, as they are always in pairs, one on each side, it might perhaps be expected that, when in full activity, they should produce a regular swing or oscillation of the head, in that direction; but as it is possible that they may, in this respect, exactly balance and neutralize each other, we shall not insist much on the want of the side shake which should accompany their many operations,- but admit that the experimentum crucis can only be made as to those which have their seat in the back part of the head, and which, very fortunately, are of too prominent and important a description to have any thing doubtful or obscure in their manifestations. In that quarter are situated, 1. Love of Children; 2. Love of Women; 3. Love of Fame; 4. Pride; 5. Constancy. of Affection; and, 6. Caution or Cowardice. Now, has it ever been observed that, when any of these sentiments are excited, the head is moved backwards, and the organs propelled towards their appropriate objects? When a man fondles his children, does he project towards them the nape of his neck ? When he gazes amorously on a beautiful girl, does he forthwith turn his back on her, and present the upper part of his spine ? When he seeks the applause of assembled multitudes, in the senate, on the battle-field, on the stage, is he irresistibly moved to go to the left about, and advance the posterior curves of his cranium ? Has a proud man a natural tendency to move backwards ? Are constant friends and lovers generally to be found drifting down, stern foremost, on the objects of their affections ? In the case of Cowardice, indeed, we must admit that turning the back is natural : But we cannot but think that it is better accounted for by the aversion the party has, in such cases, to face danger, and the facility which that judicious movement gives him to run away from it, than by the accidental position of the organ

of Cautiousness on the hinder disk of the skull. The chapter of • Individuality' is scarcely less characteristic. This also is a very important faculty with the phrenologists; and has its organ-or its two organs-in the very middle of the brow, immediately above the root of the nose. They are large organs--and have, beyond all doubt, a great effect on the character; but how they affect it, or what they denote, the great Doctors of the school, it seems, are not yet agreedand few of their pupils, we suppose, will pretend to understand. Dr Gall, the great founder of the sect, at first mistook this central protuberance for the organ of the Memory of Things;' but afterwards came to be satisfied that it was truly the organ of a very simple and conceiveable faculty, which he has ingeniously denominated · The Sense of Things-or the

capacity of being Educatedor of perfectabibility!' Dr Spurzheim, again, has ascertained that there are two organs, and consequently two distinct faculties-- one placed exactly above the other;—that the undermost, which is properly called Individuality,“ recognises the existence of individual beings'-and that the uppermost, which it seems must be called Eventuality, gives us the capacity of « attending to phenomena, facts, events, natural history, and anecdotes.' Mr Combe concurs with Dr Spurzheim in thinking, that there are clearly two faculties; but being more stingy in his onomatopeia, he will only afford one name for both-and calls the one the other lower Individuality'--the upper being that which gives ' a fondness for natural history, and for remembering * facts recorded in books, or narrated by men,” while the lower only predisposes us to observe what occurs around us, and « to take an interest in Events !'- And, finally, the Reverend Mr Welsh, who is a great authority, we find, among the initiated, is decidedly of opinion that one of the Individualities is

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merely the organ of our perception of Motion, and the other of something else-we really forget what.

It cannot be necessary, we suppose, to point out how admirably these definitions agree with all preexisting ideas of the nature of a simple and independent faculty-or with each other. But it may be necessary to satisfy our readers, that they really have been advisedly put forth by men pretending to have effected a prodigious reformation in philosophy; and, indeed, without perusing the very words of their authors, we are quite sensible that no just conception of their folly and extravagance could be obtained. Of Dr Gall, then, it is here recorded, that

* At first he regarded this as the organ of the “ memory of things ;" but, on farther reflection, he perceived, that the name memory of things' does not include the whole sphere of activity of the organ now under consideration. He observed, that persons who had this part of the brain arge, possessed not only a great memory for facts, but were distinguished by prompt conception in general, and an extreme facility of apprehension; a strong desire for information, and instruction ; a disposition to study all branches of knowledge, and to teach these to others; and also, that, if not restrained by the higher faculties, such persons were naturally prone to adopt the opinions of others, to embrace new doctrines, and to modify their own minds according to the manners, customs, and circumstances with which they were surrounded. He therefore rejected the name,

memory of things,” and he now uses the appellations “ Sens des choses, sens d'educabilité, de perfectibilité,to distinguish this faculty.' p. 275.

Here this simple and original faculty is distinctly stated to consist of at least seven separate, and not very congruous, faculties -some of which have been long familiar to all observers—and of

every one of which it is much easier to conceive as an independent faculty, than of the far greater part of the 36 which have been admitted to that honour by the phrenologists. There is, Ist, great Memory for facts; 2. prompt Conception in general—that is, of course, of reasonings as well as facts; 3. strong Desire for information; 4. Disposition to study all branches of knowledge-speculative therefore as well as empirical ; 5. Disposition to teach all these to others; 6. Proneness to adopt the opinions of others; 7. Inclination to new doctrines of all sorts.

- And we are seriously required to believe, that all these diversified powers, faculties and dispositions, constitute but one distinct, universal sense or function of the human mind,-primitive, essential, independent, and acting by an established material organ, like the function of seeing or hearing ! Absurd as this is, however, we rather think it is overmatched by the absurdity of Dr Spurzheim, who is here reported to have delivered his oracle as follows:-

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