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Popular Science Monthly/Volume 37/August 1890/Centers of Ideation in the Brain


ON the 22d of February, 1887, Prof. David Ferrier delivered an address in this room on the question, "How far recent investigations on the functional topography of the brain could be brought in relation with craniological and anthropological researches with a view to establish the foundation of a scientific phrenology." It is my object to-night to continue that discussion, and to submit to you the basis of a scientific phrenology for your examination and criticism. I take it for granted:

1. That all mind-manifestation is dependent on brain-matter.

2. That the various elements of the mind have distinct seats in the brain, which, however, have not been as yet determined.

3. That the recent researches by physiological experimenters and pathological investigators—which have resulted in defining distinct regions for motion and sensation—established the physiological correlative of psychological actions.

By applying galvanic currents to definite portions of the brain, or by destroying certain areas, physiological experimenters cause movements of certain limbs and muscles. In itself the distribution of motor areas in the brain would be of little value to the psychologist except that it proves to him the plurality of functions of the brain. When, however, we observe that the movements caused by excitation form the physical parallel of a mental action, we may arrive at the psychological function of a certain portion of brain by reducing the various faculties of the mind to their elements, and watching their physical expression. No galvanic current will ever have the effect of demonstrating a center of ideation—say the center for the emotion of power; on the other hand, there are several emotions and all the higher intellectual operations, which have no outward physical signs. All which the excitation of that portion of brain where the emotion of power may have its center can effect is certain movements which such an emotion would cause when irritated.

To arrive, then, at the demonstration of centers of ideation there is but one way:

1. We must observe the physical expression of our thoughts and feelings, as far as possible; in other words, we must study the outward visible signs of their manifestation.

2. We must take the limbs and muscles, which are affected by definite emotions, and see on what occasions they are made to move by central excitation.

Let me give an example. The outward sign of a joyful emotion is a drawing up of the corners of the mouth. The elevation of the angles of the mouth is the muscular action going parallel with the emotion of joy. The excitation of the nerve-center causes the elevators to act. There is but one definite area from which the elevator muscles can be made to act, therefore joyful emotions must take their start from this center. When, then, a joyful emotion excites this definite portion of gray matter, a nerve-current passes to the lower center—the center for the movements of the elevator muscles—and causes them to act. As the brain is a very complex machine, other effects may be produced at the same time, but this one has always been associated particularly with exhilarating emotions. Persons of very cheerful dispositions make the elevators act so frequently that the mechanism of the nerve-display is facilitated by constant use, and the center will easier appreciate these special impressions. The elevators will be in time so accustomed to act that they will leave impressions on the face so marked to enable people to recognize, by mere physiognomical signs, their brethren who are of such disposition.

Now, let us see what the actual experiments were.

PSM V37 D531 Centers of the muscular movements of the arm.jpg
Fig. 1—Diagram. (David Ferrier.
(7) Center for movements of the elevator muscles.
(15) Gustatory center.
(11) Center for movements of the "platysma myoldes muscle."
(5) Center for movement of the arm and raising of the shoulder. (Patience muscles.)

Prof. Ferrier applied a galvanic current to the ascending frontal convolution in monkeys on a definite portion, marked 7 (Fig. 1), and to the corresponding region in dogs, jackals, and cats, all with the effect of elevating the cheeks and angles of the mouth with Closure Of the eyes. On no other region could the same be effected.

Darwin (Expression of the Emotions, p. 202, etc.) says "Dr. Duchenne repeatedly insists that under the emotion of joy the mouth is acted on exclusively by the great zygomatic muscles, which serve to draw the corners backward and upward. The upper and lower orbicular muscles are at the same time more or less contracted. A man in high spirits, though he may not actually smile, commonly exhibits some tendency to the retraction of the corners of his mouth. According to Sir Charles Bell, in all the exhilarating emotions the eyebrows, eyelids, the nostrils, and the angles of the mouth are raised. The tendency in the zygomatic muscles to contract under pleasurable emotions is shown by a curious fact communicated to me by Dr. Browne with respect to patients suffering from general paralysis of the insane: 'In this malady there is almost invariably optimism—delusions as to wealth, rank, grandeur—insane joyousness, benevolence, and profusion, while its very earliest physical symptom is trembling at the corners of the mouth and at the outer corners of the eyes. This is a well-recognized fact.'"

We have, then, sufficient evidence that the effect produced by a galvanic current on the portion of brain marked 7 in Ferrier's

PSM V37 D532 Diagram of cranio cerebral relations.jpg
Fig. 2.—Diagram of Cranio-Cerebral Relations. (Reid.)
Some of the results of observations made by the early phrenologists: Some of the results of experiments made by modern physiologists:
a, Hope: the organ of cheerfulness. a, Center for the movements of the elevator muscles |(elevating the cheeks and angles of the mouth).
b, Imitation: the organ of mimicry. b, Facial Nerve Center: center for facial movements.
c, Alimentiveness: the gustatory organ. c, Gustatory Center.
d, Cautiousness: the organ of circumspection, fear, timidity. d, Center for movements of the platysma myoides, the |muscle of fright.
e, Veneration: the organ of submission, respect, devotion. e, Center for movements of the arm and raising of the |shoulders. Patience Muscles.
f, Attachment: the organ of friendship.

topography is the physical expression of joy. We know, then, for positive that pleasurable emotions excite this center. But I do not say that it is the function of the center to produce an emotion of joy—a manner after which the old phrenologists would have expressed themselves—I merely note that all pleasurable emotions produce a nerve-current, which takes its start in this region.

Sir Crichton-Browne tells us that, in general paralysis of the insane, there is invariably optimism, beginning generally with trembling at the corners of the mouth and the outer corners of the eye. The old phrenologists located "hope" in this region (a, Fig. 2), and there is, no doubt, a strong relation between hope and optimism; and I find, in the writings of Combe, frequent allusions that this organ gave a tendency to cheerfulness. At the same time I must note that Gall, the founder of phrenology, did not admit "hope" as a faculty, but included this portion of brain in his organ of "imitation," or "center for mimicry," of which I shall speak directly.

There are many defects in the old phrenological system; one of them being that it rather favored complex functions. But, all the same, an unprejudiced investigator must take their observations into consideration. I need not remark that, when I refer to phrenology, I mean only the observations of Gall, and not the fancies and fallacies of his followers.

This center for the elevator muscles, and probable center from which exhilarating emotions take their start, is in close connection with Exner's center for the facial nerve.

Ferrier's center, No. 7, is a little lower than the center for the "nervus facialis" as located by Exner (Localisation der Functionen in der Grosshirnrinde des Menschen, Wien, 1881). The "nervus facialis" center occupies a very large portion of brain in Exner's collection of pathological evidence. The most intense centers for facial movements are localized by him in the squares marked 57, 58, 65 (Fig. 3), but are said to extend actually from the gyrus centralis anterior to the latter halves of the lower frontal convolutions. He quotes many cases of disease of this nerve, and is particularly struck with the frequency with which disease of the facial nerve and aphasia concur. He says (page 56) it can not be mere chance that paralysis of the facialis is frequently accompanied by aphasia and the reverse—an observation which was also made by Ferrier.

There is sufficient evidence that the center for the facial movements occupies an area extending from the ascending frontal convolution to the middle frontal convolution—a fact which was noted by Gall. He located in this region the talent for mimicry, the talent of imitating the gestures of other people (b, Fig. 2); more than this, he noted that, when this region was prominently developed, there was not only a talent for mimicry, but also a talent for the imitation of the voice of other people, and many examinations and casts of heads of eminent actors were made to prove this theory.

We have heard from Exner and Ferrier how closely the speech and facial nerve centers are connected; both in perfection being necessary for a clever actor. But let me quote Gall himself. Speaking of a man with a peculiar prominence of this region, he says:

"He imitated in so striking a manner the gait, the gestures, the sound of the voice, etc., that the person was immediately recognized. I hastened to the institution for the deaf and dumb to examine the head of the pupil Casteigner, who had been received into the establishment six weeks previous, and who, from the first, had fixed our attention by his prodigious talent for imitation.

PSM V37 D534 Control centers for the movement of facial muscles.jpg
Fig. 3.—Diagram. (Sigmund Exner.) The darkest squares are Nos. 57, 58, 65, and are the most intense centers for the movements of the facial muscles.

On Shrove-Tuesday, when a little theatrical piece is usually represented in the establishment, he had imitated so perfectly the gesture, the gait, etc., of the directors, inspector, physician, and surgeon of the institute, and especially of some women, that it was impossible to mistake; a scene which amused the more, as nothing like it was expected from a boy whose education had been absolutely neglected."

He goes on to explain that many men have a natural talent for the stage or pantomime, and that the history of the lives of great actors shows that the majority of them had received little education and were intended for some other profession, but their innate disposition drove them to the stage. The faculty of imitation is exercised sometimes even in idiots and madmen. Pinel says:

"A young idiot, whom I have long had under my eye, has the most marked and irresistible inclination to imitate all that she sees done in her presence; she repeats mechanically all that she hears said, and imitates with the greatest fidelity the gestures and actions of others, without much regard to propriety."

I can not go into details to-night as to the ample evidence, pathological and otherwise, which the early phrenologists brought forward in their time. They were only ridiculed and treated as charlatans. To-day people know nothing of the old phrenology, except what they hear from opponents and read in books by some, phrenological dilettanti. Scientific men think Gall's theory exploded, because Sir William Hamilton and Flourens appeared to disprove it; but we know, since 1870, that the doctrines of these two men are equally valueless, for Flourens taught that the whole brain acted as an organ of the mind, and not, as we know now, that special parts of the brain have separate functions; while Sir William Hamilton considered it impossible 'to form a system on the supposed parallelism of brain and mind. L. Landois (Lehrbuch der Physiologie) recommends a re-examination of Gall's theories, and I hope to show you to-night that, whatever you may think of the phrenological system, Gall's fundamental observations were correct.

Ferrier's experiments on monkeys on the anterior and inner aspect of the uncinate gyrus, marked 15 (Fig. 1), had the effect of "torsion of the lip and semiclosure of the nostril on the same side, as when the interior of the nostril is irritated by some pungent odor." He says (page 244, The Functions of the Brain, London, 1886):

"Irritation of the middle temporo-sphenoidal convolution I have found in general to be without any obvious reaction except toward the lower extremity, where in several instances movements of the tongue, cheek-pouches, and jaws were induced very much like those which are characteristic of tasting."

The same experiment on 15, the uncinate gyrus or extremity of the temporal lobe of dogs, had the result of "torsion of the nostril on the same side, as if from irritation directly applied to the nostril." The same effect was produced by experiments on cats and other animals. He continues:

Page 315: "As above described, irritation of the hippocampal lobule in the monkey, cat, dog, and rabbit was attended by essentially the same reaction in all, viz., a peculiar torsion of the. lip and nostril on the same side. This reaction is precisely the same as is induced in these animals by the direct application of some strong or disagreeable odor to the nostril, and is evidently the outward or associated expression of excited olfactory sensation."

Page 321: "As to the sense of taste, I have not succeeded in differentiating any special region related to this faculty, but that it is in close relation with the olfactory center is probable from the facts described. It was noted in connection with electrical irritation of the lower extremity of the temporo-sphenoidal convolutions in the monkey, and of the same region in the brain of the cat, that movements of the lips, tongue, cheek-pouches, and jaws were occasionally induced—phenomena which might be regarded as indications of the excitation of gustatory sensation. This interpretation receives support from the above-described results of destructive lesions; and we have, therefore, reasonable grounds for concluding that the gustatory centers are situated at the lower extremity of the temporo-sphenoidal lobes, in close relation with those of smell."

Page 431: "The physiological needs of the organism, in so far as they induce locally discriminable sensations, express themselves subjectively as definite appetites or desires, which are the conscious correlations of physiological wants. The appetite of hunger is the desire to satisfy or remove a local sensation, referable to the stomach, in which the physiological needs of the stomach express themselves. The substrata of the feeling of hunger and appetite for food are the stomachic branches of the vagus and their cerebral centers; and, as local conditions of the stomach may destroy or increase the feeling of hunger, so central disease may give rise to ravenous appetite or sitophobia, conditions exemplified in certain forms of insanity."

Ferrier thus proves the tip of the lower temporal convolutions to be the "gustatory center"; and even Hitzig, who is not always flattering to Prof. Ferrier, delights in noting this discovery. Yet I will show you immediately that this center—of which we are most certain—was known and correctly localized in the same portion of brain by the early phrenologists.

Many men claimed the discovery of the organ called "gustativeness," or "alimentiveness," but the editors of the Edinburgh Phrenological Journal, vol. x, page 249, give Dr. Hoppe, of Copenhagen, the credit of having been the first and most acute observer.

"In December, 1823, he expresses the opinion that, besides the nerves of the stomach and palate, of which alone he conceives the sensations of hunger and thirst to be affections, there must be also an organ in the brain of animals for the instinct of nutrition for the preservation of life, which incites us to the sensual enjoyments of the palate, and the activity of which is independent of hunger and thirst."

In a second communication to the same journal, dated 28th December, 1824, he says:

"Regarding the organ for taking nourishment, I have been led to think, since I wrote last, that the place where its different degrees of development are manifested in the living body is in the fossa zygomatica (c, Fig. 2). Before I had thought at all of phrenology I was struck with the remarkable breadth of the face or head of a friend of mine, caused, not by prominent cheekbones, as in some varieties of mankind, but more toward the ears, by the great convexity of the zygomatic arch. Knowing that this individual was exceedingly fond of good living, and that, even in spite of a very powerful intellect, and propensities moderate in almost every other respect, he was prone to indulge too freely in the joys of the table, I afterward thought that this form of the head and tendency of the mind might bear a nearer relation to each other than had at first occurred to me; and in some other persons, notoriously fond of good eating and drinking, I found a confirmation of my suppositions. This prominence of the bony arch, I think, must be an absolute consequence of the part of the cranium lying under the temporal muscle being pushed outward, and diminishing in that direction the space of the fossa."

Dr. Hoppe considered the organ "alimentiveness" to be likewise the organ of taste. He says:

"That the sensation of taste only passes through the nerves and is perceived in a part of the brain is a supposition, I think, sufficiently proved. Now, it appears to me as highly probable, and by analogy agreeing with other experience, that it is one and the same organ which tastes, viz., distinguishes and enjoys, and incites us to taste, or, in other terms, to take food and drink. This, according to my opinion, is the organ of appetite for food, and consequently it may be named the organ of taste, gustus."

Dr. Crook, of London, mentions that, several years before the publication of Dr. Hoppe's papers, he himself had arrived at similar conclusions with regard to this faculty and the position of its organ. He says:

"Three persons with whom I had become acquainted in the year 1819, first led me to suspect that a portion of brain situated near the front of the ear was connected with the pleasures of the "festive board. From that time to the end of 1822 above a thousand observations were made. As they tended to confirm this view, several phrenological friends were informed of the result. From 1823 I no longer doubted that the anterior portion of the middle lobe was a distinct organ, and that its primary use was the discrimination and enjoyment of meats and drink. It was difficult, however, to hit the fundamental power. The situation of the organ, under the zygomatic process and the temporal muscle, frequently precluded the possibility of accurate observation. But, notwithstanding, well-marked cases, both of a positive and a negative kind, were investigated."

A long controversy follows this paper on "alimentiveness," the gustatory center, in the Phrenological Journal, and much ridicule was thrown at the originators for localizing a center for hunger and thirst, those affections being thought due to the stomach alone. Even to-day scientific men say phrenology is exploded, because certain thicknesses in the skull and the various muscles make it impossible to distinguish the corresponding portions of brain; yet it is remarkable that the organ which has been ridiculed most, and which was the most difficult to observe, is to-day found correct.

If there were but two organs correctly localized by Gall, it would justify a reconsideration of his work; but there seems to be a number of faculties, the localization of which has been confirmed by modern experiments. Unfortunately, the later phrenologists have spoiled many of Gall's original observations. I will just give a few more examples, in order that my paper may receive sufficient consideration, and may effect a change in your views with regard to the old phrenology.

Prof. Ferrier's experiments on "the lower extremity of the ascending parietal convolution" in monkeys, marked 11 (Fig. 1), resulted in "retraction of the angle of the mouth. The action is that of the platysma myoides."

Darwin (Expression of Emotions, page 298) says with regard to the physical expression of "fear," and the platysma myoides muscle:

"Sir Charles Bell (Anatomy of Expression, page 168) and others have stated that this muscle is strongly contracted under the influence of fear; and Duchenne insists so strongly on its importance in the expression of this emotion that he calls it the muscle of fright."

This may perhaps suffice to show that the platysma myoides muscle is called into action in the expression of fear.

Now let me draw your attention again to the old phrenology. Gall located so-called "cautiousness" in an area which covers not only Ferrier's center 11, but also the angular gyrus (d, Fig. 2). He found an enormous development of this region in persons known for their timidity, persons known to take alarm easily, and who could be easily terrified.

As to the function of the angular gyrus, physiologists are not agreed. Ferrier includes the gyrus in his center of sight. Munk calls it "Seelenblindheit"—a strange name with a still stranger meaning.

I will quote some passages which seem to indicate that the effects produced by lesion of this region have some connection with the function attributed to it by phrenologists.

Ferrier, Philosophical Transactions, 1875, Part II, pages 445-451, Résumé: "After destruction of the angular gyrus the animal commences to feel about cautiously; if pushed to move, it runs against every obstacle on its way. If put on the floor, it cries out and looks about quite frightened. If called, it points its ears and cries. If taken up again, it clings to one as if afraid of being put down. On the other hand, threatening with the stick has no effect unless the stick is brought in contact with the eyes."

Munk (Functionen der Grosshirnrinde, page 25 etc.) makes the same observations as Ferrier, only his region of destruction, marked A1 (Fig. 4), includes a portion of brain where Gall located PSM V37 D539 Area controlling social attachment and emotion of fear.jpgFig. 4.—Diagram. (Hermann Munk.) Extirpation of area marked A1 causing loss of social attachment, and of the emotion of fear. his organ of "friendship" or "attachment" (f, Fig. 2); and Munk, speaking of the effect, says: "However, the animal remains cold at the sight of men, whom it used to greet most friendly, and even at the sight of dogs, with whom it used to play"; an effect which can be easily explained on phrenological principles by the loss of the organ of "attachment" or "friendship." He goes on to remark that the whip, which formerly frightened the animal away to a corner, has now no effect. The animal stops before every obstacle on its path and turns back again; one has to push it to go up any steps, and then it feels its way with its nose, though not blind. When recovering, it stares at everything and examines every object most cautiously, both when lying down and walking about, just as if it had to learn afresh and gain new experience.

Goltz (Verrichtungen des Grosshirns, page 18, etc.) says it is a well-known fact that animals are easily put into rage by the appearance of a person in strange costume. He got his servant dressed up in fantastic attire, and his dog would have torn him to pieces had not proper precautions been taken. When the dog, however, had been operated upon, and the experiment was repeated, he remained perfectly calm, even when the servant stepped quite close to him, though the animal was by no means blind:

It is not difficult to detect in all these experiments an affection of some faculty which, when excited, causes timidity. What the element of that faculty is I can not tell, but in its actions it is concerned with the emotion of fear.

Prof. Ferrier found, when experimenting on dogs and other animals on a portion of brain marked 5 (Fig. 1), which corresponds to "the ascending frontal convolution at the base of the superior frontal" in the human brain, elevation of shoulder and extension forward of the opposite fore-limb, or flexion of the forearm and paw.

Now, according to Darwin, raising of the shoulders—sometimes accompanied by extension of the arms—is a sign of non-resistance. He inquires, page 271:

"Why men in all parts of the world when they feel—whether or not they wish to show this feeling—that they can not or will not do something, or will not resist something if done by another, shrug their shoulders, at the same time often bending in their elbows, showing the palms of their hands with extended fingers, often throwing their heads a little on one side, raising their eyebrows, and opening their mouths."

On page 270 he says: "Shrugging the shoulders likewise expresses patience or the absence of any intention to resist. Hence the muscles which raise the shoulders are sometimes called, as I have been informed by an artist, the patience muscles."

Mantegazza (La Physionomie et les Sentiments, page 113, etc.) dwells on the importance of the movements of the arm in the act of submission, devotion, and veneration. Darwin doubted whether the kneeling posture, with the hands upturned and palms joined, is an innate expression of devotion, but rather thought this posture a sign of submission. Mantegazza differs from Darwin; he holds that it is from the habit we have from our childhood to join our hands for prayer, that we employ the gesture when appealing to human beings, who can do us either much good or great harm. He thinks this gesture is innate and not acquired. He questioned many artists, and gives as the result distinct rules, showing the importance which the position of hand and arm play in the expression of veneration and devotion.

We know, then, that the raising of the shoulders, together with the bending of the arms and hands, are concerned in the physical expression of submission or non-resistance.

The old phrenologists located in this region their organ of "veneration"(e, Fig. 2) which is to give an impulse to devotion and worship. Combe (System of Phrenology, page 212) says: "Children who are prone to rebellion, regardless of authority, and little attentive to command, will generally be found to have this organ deficient. Veneration leads to deference for superiors in rank as well as in years, and prompts to the reverence of authority."

Large "veneration," say the phrenologists, produces an instinctive feeling of respect; a defect of "veneration" has the effect of diminishing the reverence for power. Dr. Spurzheim called it the emotion of reverence arid respect.

We see again the strong relation between the old phrenology and the results of the experiments of modern phrenology. On the one hand, I have shown you that the effect produced by Ferrier's faradization is the natural language of a feeling of non-resistance; on the other, that observations of Gall resulted in ascribing to this portion of brain the seat of the emotion of respect and reverence. Of course, respectful people do not resist authority.

Gall appears to me to have been aware of the importance that the study of the physical expression of our emotions and thoughts will play some day, and to have been expecting that this study of the physical parallel to our mental operations will furnish new evidence for his or any other system, built upon the parallelism of brain and mind. He devotes a chapter to pathognomy, of which the following extract may prove interesting: "This art is founded on Nature herself; for it is Nature that prompts all the gestures, the attitudes, the movements, finally the whole mimicry, by which men and animals express all their feelings and ideas. Pathognomy has its fixed and immutable laws, whether we appy it to man or to animals, so long as the question relates to the same 'feelings and the same ideas. Pathognomy is the universal language of all nations and of all animals. There is no beast or man who does not learn it; there is no beast or man who does not understand it. It accompanies language and strengthens its expressions; it supplies the defects of articulate language. Words may be ambiguous, but pathognomy never is so. What would become of engraving, painting, sculpture, the comic art, eloquence, poetry, if the expression of the sentiments and ideas were not subjected to immutable laws? What means would they have in their power to paint modesty, prudence, fear, despair, baseness, joy, anger, contempt, pride or devotion? Where is the animal or man who takes time to deliberate on the manner in which he would make his feelings and his ideas understood by others? Even at the moment when the feelings and the ideas arise, they are written on the exterior in characters discernible by all the world. It is certain, therefore, that the feelings, ideas, affections, and passions are manifested by suitable expression according to determinate and invariable laws."

Gall noted the physical expression of our emotions, though he could give us no explanation of its cause.

With the assistance of Hitzig, Fritsch, and Ferrier's experiments on the one hand, and Gratiolet, Piderit, Darwin, and Mantegazza's observations on the other, I have endeavored to show you to night: (1) the reason why certain muscles and limbs are called into action by certain feelings and emotions; and (2) how to demonstrate centers of ideation by comparing the physiological experiments with pathognomy.

My work is, however, not complete: for, first of all, I have not attempted to find the elements of those faculties which I located; secondly, we must take into consideration that mind, like brain, is very complicated, and, even had philosophers ever agreed as to its elements, we know from experience that an emotion seldom acts singly.

Like all novelties, my paper will create some opposition, but I do not fear criticism: I only ask for a re-examination of Gall's work, which I believe has been rejected without due consideration.


Dr. Beddoe thought that, although phrenologists had erected an edifice of straw and rubbish on the foundations laid by Gall and Spurzheim, these last had been men of considerable power and acuteness, whose observations ought not to be neglected in any new attempts at the localization of faculty.

Dr. Ferrier remarked that, as the relations between brain and mind were still in many respects very obscure, he cordially welcomed any attempt to throw light on the problem. So far the physiological or objective functions of certain cerebral regions had been determined, but the question was, What are the correlations between the objective and the subjective or psychological aspects of these same regions? As the brain was composed of sensory and motor substrata, and as the brain was the organ of ideation, therefore ideation was the functioning of centers whose objective functions were motor and sensory. That there was a relation between the development of certain regions and certain motor and sensory faculties and capacities was undoubted, and was amply proved by the facts of comparative anatomy and physiology, normal and morbid; but whether any particular center could be taken as the index of any particular intellectual faculty or peculiarity was a totally different matter, for the same center might be called into activity in connection with unnamable mental states. Of which, then, would it be the index? Mr. Hollander's speculations in reference to so-called phrenological doctrines were ingenious; but what we wanted was evidence founded on careful investigation according to strictly scientific methods, serving to indicate a relation between the development of particular centers and special mental faculties, aptitudes, or peculiarities. At present he did not think that there was any such worthy of consideration, beyond the general indications above mentioned. But the subject was one which was worthy of careful study, and a scientific phrenology might one day become possible.

Mr. Wakefield said that, as men's minds undoubtedly differed from each other in their natural characteristics, so, it might be presumed, did also the physical organs through which mind manifested itself. Was it possible to detect these differences? Were there, also, localized centers of action corresponding to certain faculties or powers of the mind? This was the problem for solution and demonstration. Some facts had come under his observation which led him to think that the solution was not hopeless; but the advance made in this department of knowledge as to the true relation of mind and body was but slow and uncertain.

Mr. G. Bertin remarked that it had been ascertained that the faculty of sight was localized in a convolution of the posterior part of the brain, and as we know that the faculty of speech is localized in the third left frontal convolution, it would seem that modern discoveries disprove the assumptions of the phrenologists. One great mistake of their system is to attribute the same faculties to the two lobes of the brain, a fact disproved by the localization of the faculty of speech on the left side. Another thing lost sight of is, that the examination of the head could only show the development of the surface of the brain, while we have no means to detect its inner development. Nor must we forget that the skull does not change after a certain age, though faculties may be still developing. Another mistake of phrenologists is to localize faculties too much; if phrenology is to become a science, broader lines will have to be followed, and Mr. Hollander's careful researches will do much to further this object.

Mr. Hollander, in reply, observed that nobody disputes the fact that there are brain-centers for ideation; the question is only as to their localization. But as the objective side—i. e., the physical correlative of mental manifestation—has been in many cases successfully established, there remains but the demonstration of the subjective side. How far the speaker had succeeded in this may be judged when the paper is read in type. So far he had not excited opposition. But now comes the coincidence that some of Prof. Ferrier's researches, especially on the gustatory center, confirm the early phrenological observations long ago rejected. By careful examination and a thorough study of Gall's works the speaker found that there was a sound basis to his system. Gall had extraordinary powers of observation, and was an expert in comparative anatomy. He noticed the resemblance between the skulls of murderers and the skulls of carnivorous animals; the predominance of the temporal lobe struck him, and both Prof. Benedict and Lombroso—the authorities on criminal anthropology—testify as to its correctness. Gall, in the same manner, noticed peculiarities in the heads of actors, poets, musicians, etc. He reasoned that there must be in the case of murderers an organ giving an impulse to destroy or. kill ("destructiveness"), in the case of mimics an organ giving an impulse to imitate ("organ of imitation"), etc. Now, these deductions are open to criticism, but the original observations are beyond dispute. There are no two characters alike, neither are there two skulls alike. The question in both cases is, how to measure the differences. There is no instrument for the measurement of those "ups and downs," protuberances and depressions of the living head. Between the skull of a Goethe and that of a murderer there are innumerable varieties. As we are able to distinguish the two extremes, why should we not succeed in demonstrating the intermediate stages? Gall's system was rejected at its first appearance, because it threatened to upset familiar notions about the liberty of the will, about special creation, and supernatural religion. This was the first obstacle, and very few men, even nowadays, care to risk the danger of opposing popular opinion. The author had attempted a revival of Gall's system, more scientific and appealing to the learned only. He hoped that it would be received without prejudice.


  1. A paper read before the Anthropological Institute, London, February 12, 1889.