Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 46.djvu/386

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

of a workaday life, it is doubtful if these pictures will be regarded with any reverence or affection by our posterity from a merely sentimental point of view. But this would be changed if photographs were, as should be all photographs which aim to give a true picture of the face, taken just two ways—profile and full face. They would then be of scientific value; and even a dilettante scientific amateur of the future would esteem a family collection as something of interest for the lessons in evolution or anthropology it might teach: perchance, the theme might be the "Inheritance of Acquired Characters." The want of such photographs at the present day makes it extremely difficult to impress upon the layman or to prove to the scientist how much people change facially during life. Three-quarter views give but a feeble idea of the development. Nothing is more remarkable than a comparison of the same-sized profile views of the same person at six and at thirty years of age: the growth of the nose and the development of the forehead are so great that the jaws appear to have diminished in size; and this is really what the jaws have done, in proportion to the whole face.

It is a fond delusion with visitors and nurses that the baby is just like its father or mother. No one who has had that scientific training necessary to x^roper observation could make such a statement. It is a gross libel, sometimes on the baby, sometimes on the parents. Properly taken photographs show that the proportions of nearly every feature in the face of a baby and an adult are entirely different; but the greatest difference exists in the size and shape of the nose, and the size of the jaws. If, when adult, we had features like our babies, we should have a countenance of a negroid type. Except positive evidence be available, it would hardly be credible that the small-jawed, long and prominent-nosed individual, with high forehead, was in babyhood prognathous, short and snub-nosed, with a remarkably receding forehead. The difference resulting from the change during life as shown by two photographs reduced to the same size, not the same proportion, is greater than the difference between many species; yet the very fact of such metabolism and the possibility of its earlier transmission from generation to generation may be the basis of specific mutation, without calling in the aid of natural, or sexual, or physiological selection to account for that phenomenon.

The prognathism of a child is less noticeable than it should be, because such prognathism, owing to the disposition of weight, alters the whole carriage of the head; and the difference in the method of carrying the head obscures the prognathism to a certain extent. Prognathism is a heritage from quadrupedal ancestors, and is a necessary result of the carriage of the head en-