صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

a

in this town by the delivery of an able lecture on the Philosophy of the Hindoos, by Mr Montgomery.

COPENHAGEN.-Our indefatigable friend Dr Otto has sent us the first number of a Phrenological Journal published by him in Danish. The contents are,-). The Study, Value, and Practical Utility of Phrenology.-2. Outlines of the System of Phrenology, and Vindication of its Principles.-3. On the Influence of Amativeness on the Sentiments and Intellectual Faculties, (translated from the Phrenological Journal published in Edinburgh).-4. Remarkable Criminal Cases.-5. The Progress of Phrenology.-This work has already obtained an extensive circulation, not only in Denmark, but also in Sweden and Norway. Dr Otto has also published another work, the title of which is, “ Phre

nology applied to Crimes and Criminals," a series of Psychological Essays, by C. Otto, M.D. &c. It is a reprint of some papers on this subject published in his medical journal Hygæa. Its contents are,-). Remarks on Crime, Punishments, and Responsibility in general.-2. The Murderer P. H. Nissen ; his Crimes and Life compared with his cerebral Development, (he mixed poison for his father and mother).-3. On Infanticide; its Motives, Causes, and Imputability. (He shows that infanticide only in very rare cases is to be considered as a true crime; it is rather a sort of insanity.) ---4. The Infanticide, Ane Nielsdatter. -5. Remarks on Destructiveness. (The direction and abuses of this propension.)-6. The Murderer Adolph Mall, (murdered his mother, brother, and friend; his life and his misdeeds compared with his skull).—7. Observations on Conscientiousness.-8. The Murderer Peder Mikkelsen, (murdered his son-in-law).-9. Acquisitiveness in its Directions.--10. Conclusion.

EDINBURGH.—We have received an able Essay on Individuality and Memory, which, if possible, shall appear in our next number. Also an interesting communication on Concentrativeness and Constructiveness, which is at present under consideration.

NOTICE TO SUBSCRIBERS.

The conductors of the Phrenological Journal have received numerous complaints from country subscribers, of delay in receiving their copies, and beg to mention, that the general cause of it is the following :-A subscriber in the country desires his bookseller in the country to procure the Journal. This bookseller writes to his correspondent in Edinburgh to forward each number with his first parcel after publication. But if the country bookseller's trade be not extensive, there may be no parcel to him from his correspondent in Edinburgh for weeks or months in succession; and in this way the Journal may lie with the Edinburgh correspondent a long time before it is sent off. The remedy for this is, for country subscribers to send an order direct to the publishers in Edinburgh or London, whose names are on the title-page, desiring them to transmit each number immediately on publication, pointing out, at the same time, by what conveyance it is to be sent. If this is inconvenient or expensive, the next best method would be, to employ a bookseller in the country who is attentive to business, and has frequent parcels from Edinburgh or London. The conductors solicit every information on this subject from the subscribers, as they anxiously desire to attain punctuality in delivery of the copies.

THE

PHRENOLOGICAL JOURNAL.

No XVI.

ARTICLE I.

A COMPARATIVE VIEW OF THE RELATION BETWEEN THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE NERVOUS SYSTEM AND THE FUNCTIONS OF ANIMALS.

By Thomas Sandwith, Surgeon, and Member of the Hull Phrenological

Society, fc.

" Whether the views of Gall and Spurzheim may be verified or not, our la

bours in this direction must be productive, must bring with them collateral advantage."

LAWRENCE.

(Read to the Hull Society, May 1827.)

a

In a former essay, of which the substance is known to most of you, an endeavour was made to prove, from the closest analogy, that the a priori objection against Phrenology, viz. that the brain manifested none of the separate organs described by its founders, was untenable, the objection being equally applicable to the established theory of the functions of the spinal chord. The nature of the evidence on which Phrenology is erected was exhibited. The science was also shown to be in harmony with many phenomena otherwise inexplicable, as monomania, drunkenness, dreaming, somnambulism, the re

Vol. IV. -No XVI.

2 H

sults of education, and national character. Several objections, having their origin in profound ignorance of comparative anatomy, were refuted, and others adverted to,-such as the tendency of the new theory to materialism, atheism, &c., -as being at length exploded. It would have been an easy matter to refute another objection commonly made by pretenders to anatomical knowledge, viz. “ that the form of the “ cranium is no criterion of the configuration of the brain," a no less competent observer than Cuvier himself having said, “ that in all “ mammiferous animals the brain is moulded in the cavity of the “ cranium, which it fills exactly; so that the description of the os

seous part affords us a knowledge of at least the external form of “ the medullary mass within."* I have now the honour of calling the attention of the Society to another important consideration, viz. the relation that obtains, throughout the animal kingdom, between the development of the nervous system and the functions of animals. • The visible fabric of the brain “ differs most widely in quadrupeds, birds, fishes, insects, and “ there is an equal difference in their intellectual phenomena, appe" tites and instincts, every variation in construction being accom“panied with a corresponding modification of function.”+ °The objectors to Phrenology are unwilling to believe the notion of the perfection or deficiency of the manifestations of any mental faculty being at all dependent on the size or form of a portion of the brain. If, however, the proposition just stated be established, its truth must be admitted. We shall observe also, as we proceed, abundant evidence of the truth of Messrs Gall and Spurzheim's theory of the origin of the nervous system, viz. “ that it is not an unit, but consists of

many essentially different parts, which have their own individual

origins, and are mutually in communication." This proposition, which is collateral and independent of the former, it is desirable to keep in view.

When we examine any given portion of the nervous system,—the brain, the spinal chord, the ganglions, or any part of these, we can discover nothing of the functions which any of these perform. We do not, as in some of the other

[ocr errors]

• Cuvier's Comparative Anatomy, vol, ü.

P.

13.

+ Lawrence.

[ocr errors]

organs, perceive a mechanical connexion between the structure and its particular uses ; but when we take a comparative survey of the nervous systems of the entire animal kingdom, the result is very different. It is then “ the simplifica“ tion or degradation of the organization is immediately percep“ tible." Perfection of function is seen in connexion with full development of nervous matter, deficiency with imperfect organization, and absolute negation of function, with a corresponding chasm in the structure of the nervous system : and this is true, not only “ of the four great departments of the “ animal kingdom, but is equally so in each department. Being strictly experimental, this evidence is highly valuable. To compare a perfectly organized animal, in which there is corresponding perfection of function, with another in which structure and function are alike defective, is the same in effect as to ascertain the functions of the more gifted animal by the mutilation of its organs. " It is, indeed, with the exception of the facts supplied by pathology, the only kind of evidence open to the physiologist. The nerves themselves admit of mutilation and division, and to experiments of this kind we are indebted for our recent knowledge of the functions of the spinal marrow. But when the centre of the system is invaded by the knife, many impediments besides death defeat the purpose of the experimenter. “ The animals of “ inferior classes,” says Mr Lawrence, are so many subjects of ex. “ periment ready prepared for us, where any organ may be observed “ under every variety of simplicity and complication in its own “ structure of existence alone, or in combination with others.”Being presented, then, with experiments prepared by the hand of nature, who has, as it were, performed the necessary mutilations, and left no wound or scar, and no embarrassing disturbance of function, it is our business to examine them with attention, in order to ascertain whether they agree with the conclusions at which we have arrived by their means.

In the lowest order of animals, zoophytes, many of which seem to form a connecting link between the animal and vege

• Lawrence, p. 101.

« السابقةمتابعة »