Page images

() As an artist, he would excel if his vision were perfect: he has every necessary faculty, even to Imitation.

“(8) He is fond of argument, and not easily convinced ; he would exhibit physical courage if called upon; and although he loves money—as who does not ?—so far from there being any evidence of greediness, he is benevolent and liberal, but probably not extravagant. This part of his disposition is, however, so evenly balanced that there is not likely to be much peculiarity.

"(1) His domestic affections are his best. Conscientiousness ought to be one more, but I do not see what will try it.


I will make a few remarks on this estimate, referring to the lettered paragraphs : (a) This is more medical than phrenological, but it is strikingly accurate. So long as I was at school I suffered from indigestion; but my after life, largely spent in the open air, has almost entirely removed this slight constitutional failing. (6) A very accurate statement. (c) This is strikingly correct. (d) I have already shown how my experience at Leicester exactly accorded with this estimate. (e) This also is an exact statement of my relation to music. (f) Here I think Mr. Rumball

f has gone somewhat beyond his own detailed estimate of the development of my organs of Weight, Form, and Size, which are put at only a little above the average. The position of these organs over the frontal sinus renders their estimate very difficult, and I am inclined to think they are really a little below rather than above the average. At the same time I did draw a little without any teaching worth the name, and I have a high appreciation of good design, and especially of the artistic touch, so that if my attention had been wholly devoted to the study and practice of art, I may possibly have succeeded. But my occupations and tastes led me in other directions, while the progress of photography rendered sketching less and less necessary.

(8) The first statement here is not only correct, but it is really the main feature of my intellectual character. I can

hardly write with ease, unless I am seeking to prove something. Mere narrative is distasteful to me. The remainder of the section calls for no special observation.

(h) I will only remark that the defect here pointed out does undoubtedly exist, and it has been of some use to me to know it.

On the whole, it appears to me that these two expositions of my character, the result of a very rapid examination of the form of my head by two perfect strangers, made in public among, perhaps, a dozen others, all waiting at the end of an evening lecture, are so curiously exact in so many distinct points as to demonstrate a large amount of truthboth in the principle and in the details—of the method by which they were produced. A short account of the evidence in support of Phrenology is given in my “ Wonderful Century” (Chapter xx.), and those who are interested in the subject will there see that the supposed “localization of motor areas,” by Professor Ferrier and others, which are usually stated to be a disproof of the science, are really one of its supports, the movements produced being merely those which express the emotions due to the excitation of the phrenological organ excited. When I touched the organ of Veneration in one of my boy patients at Leicester he fell upon his knees, closed his palms together, and gazed upwards, with the facial expression of a saint in the ecstasy of adoration. Here are very definite movements of a great number of the muscles of the whole body, and some of the movements observed by Professor Ferrier were almost as complex, and almost as clearly due to the physical expression of a familiar and powerful emotion.

I will here briefly record a few family events which succeeded my departure from England early in 1848. My brother, not having enough surveying or other work to live upon, took a small house and a few acres of good pasture land near the town, in order to keep cows and supply milk. This he tried for a year, my mother and sister living with him, doing the house work, while he carried the milk daily into the town in a small pony-cart. But the rent was too high, and it did not pay ; so in the spring of 1849, he gave it up and sailed for California in April, soon after the discoveries of gold there and when San Francisco was a city of huts and tents, and he lived there till his death in 1895, having only once visited England, in the winter of 1850-51, in order to marry the only daughter of his former employer, Mr. Webster.

Shortly after this my sister married Mr. Thomas Sims, eldest son of the Mr. Sims with whom I and my brother had lodged in Neath. He had taught himself the then undeveloped art of photography, and he and his wife settled first in Weston-super-Mare, and afterwards came to London, where I lived with them in Upper Albany Street, after my return from the Amazon.




WHAT decided our going to Para and the Amazon rather than to any other part of the tropics was the publication in 1847, in Murray's Home and Colonial Library, of “ A Voyage up the Amazon," by Mr. W. H. Edwards. This little book was so clearly and brightly written, described so well the beauty and the grandeur of tropical vegetation, and gave such a pleasing account of the people, their kindness and hospitality to strangers, and especially of the English and American merchants in Para, while expenses of living and of travelling were both very moderate, that Bates and myself at once agreed that this was the very place for us to go to if there was any chance of paying our expenses by the sale of our duplicate collections. I think we read the book in the latter part of the year (or very early in 1848), and we immediately communicated with Mr. Edward Doubleday, who had charge of the butterflies at the British Museum, for his advice upon the matter. He assured us that the whole of northern Brazil was very little known, that some small collections they had recently had from Para and Pernambuco contained many rarities and some new species, and that if we collected all orders of insects, as well as landshells, birds, and mammals, there was no doubt we could easily pay our expenses. Thus encouraged, we determined to go to Para, and began to make all the necessary arrangements. We found that by sailing in early spring we should reach Para at the beginning of the dry season, which is both

[graphic][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]
« EelmineJätka »