Графични страници
PDF файл
ePub

difference is similar to that which obtains between man and the mammalia. Men of large heads, according to Magendie, have capacious minds; whereas in idiots, as in the quadrumana, the brain is small, the convolutions few and shallow, and the anterior lobes but little developed. If, indeed, we extend the comparison through all the intermediate gradations of intellect, we shall be astonished to find a corresponding agreement. 6. The mind of the negro and the Hotten“ tot, of the Calmuck and Carib, is inferior to that of the “ European, and their organization is less perfect,"* _“ the “ intellectual characters are reduced, the animal features en“ larged and exaggerated.” Even hatters have ascertained that servants and negroes have smaller heads than others. Women are as unlike men in the form of their heads as in the qualities of their minds. In men of commanding talents the greater quantity of cerebral matter is anterior to the ear; but in heads which are truncated before, and largely developed in the opposite direction, the passions will be found to be stronger than the understanding. The higher sentiments elevate the calvaria or top of the head ; it is accordingly observed, that from men whose heads are flattened, as in quadrupeds,

“ Conscience, virtue, honour, are exiled.” Pope Alexander the Second is an illustrious example, Other differences might be enumerated; but to extend our observations further would be to trench upon the discoveries of Messrs Gall and Spurzheim, whose conclusions, indeed, are but an extension of this comparison founded on observation, and confirmed by experiment. 1,"I'm in Bonn

Beverley, April 30, 1827. -, .**!

[ocr errors]

Lawrence, p. 108. Magendie, by Milligan, p. 420.

ARTICLE II.

CASE OF TD

TD was intended for the medical profession ; but, when about 18 or 19 years of age, showed obvious aberrations of mind that unfitted him for any employment. His father having died, and left him a sum of money, the interest of which, under economical management, might suffice for his support, application was made by his relations to the Court of Session, who appointed Mr G. Combe curator of his effects, it not being necessary to confine his person. This power was conferred in 1819; and from that time up to July 1827, when T-- D-died, he continued under Mr Combe's superintendence.

In 1819, T—- D-_'s head was fully of an average size ; the knowing organs were largely developed, the fore. head rose high and rather perpendicularly, but was not broad. The organ of Comparison was considerably larger than Causality and Wit. The organs of the propensities were developed in about an average degree; Acquisitiveness and Secretiveness having rather the predominance. The organs of Self-esteem and Love of Approbation were decidedly large, the former much above an average. Imitation was large; and the moral organs were well developed, particularly Firmness. There was no circumstance in the size or shape of the brain that indicated insanity ; so that the disease was obviously one affecting its internal constitution.

His alienation presented the following features. He was easily provoked, and fierce when irritated; but otherwise free from all malevolence. He entertained an exalted opinion of his own greatness, and conceived himself to be a genius of the highest order, particularly in the drama, and on this account adopted the name of Shakspeare. For many years he subscribed his name “ T- Shakspeare D.

He was Vol. IV. -No XVI.

2 1

fond of money, extremely alive to order, and a great admirer of the fair sex. In other respects his mind presented no particular appearances.

The notion of his own greatness was obviously referable to his ample development of Self-esteem; and its direction to. wards the drama is accounted for by the combination of large Secretiveness, with Imitation and Comparison. He was fond of frequenting the theatre, and imitated with considerable success Kean and other striking actors. To establish his title to the name which he had adopted, he wrote a farce, presented it to Mr Murray of the Theatre-Royal to be acted, and, in astonishment at his rejection, printed it to convict the manager of deficiency of discrimination and taste. It was destitute of all coherence, aim, or object; but replete with the most stupendous conceptions and terrific comparisons. One of his personages says, “ I'll tell you what, when “ the universe assumes the form of a handkerchief near falling out of a gentleman's pocket, that union which you contem

plate upon will happen.". Another is described as “looking "just like stupidity benumbed by Covent Garden tailors, and, “ when you talk, your teeth present the appearance of rumps “ of hedges.”—“O loggerhead, have I lost my wits, that you are

arraying your force with all the gravity of a lawyer taking a “ guinea-note when he was entitled to a pound.” A young fop is characterized thus: “When he plays upon the piano, it's just “ discordance drunk,-impudence dressed like a puppy, ex

travagance and nonsense sitting at the fire, having been ban

quetting and lounging there, being full gorged with the fat “luxuriance." His remarks on female beauty are frequent. One of his characters addresses a lady who is in love with him : “ Go to-go to, take your plain feet hence ; moreover, I hate

plain feet. I have truly uttered my voice.” To another, whom he admires, he is more complimentary: "Be thou great

cozening Venus, madam, or the resemblance of the dawning "day, ushering thy form and potent quibbling lips before our

eyes, just as the light descending down the skies.” A lady who repeats a commendation on herself as likely to make “ a

goodly wife,” is told that it is “ as huge a lie as a man'endur"ing the massy weight of a tan-yard on his back.” He old his farce among his friends, enjoyed their praises of its merits, and ever after conceived his equality with Shakspeare indisputable. In this production bis large Comparison is

66

very conspicuous. In it, as well as in his general conduct, his knowing organs, propensities and sentiments, manifested themselves in tolerable sanity, while his reflecting intellect appeared greatly obscured.

His appetite for money was so great, that he sometimes nearly starved himself through aversion to pay for food. He was fond of spirituous liquors, but fonder still of money ; and never drank when he required to pay ; so that, except when unprincipled individuals filled him drunk to render him a spectacle for their own amusement (which was sometimes the case), he was habitually sober. This showed the activity of Acquisitiveness and Self-esteem.

His love of order was conspicuous. He was sometimes oddly, but always cleanly dressed ; and his lodgings were a pattern of arrangement.

It was not necessary to put him under confinement; but when a legal guardian became necessary, the puzzle presented itself how to get his own mind reconciled to it. To have told him that he was insane, and required a curator, would have rendered him furious, and aggravated his malady. Mr C. overcame this difficulty with complete success by addressing his predominant faculties. He recalled to his mind the poverty and ruin that had imbittered the lives of men of genius, particularly poets, from Homer down to Burns; told him that his genius had been recognised; that to free him from every similar danger, and also to leave his mind at freedom to take its loftiest flights unencumbered by paltry cares, a curator of his pecuniary interests had been appointed, who should merely collect his funds, and be at all times account. able to him for their disbursement. He was delighted at this idea ; and submitted without the least reluctance to Mr C.'s control.

Occasionally, however, he met with persons who seemed desirous of torturing his mind in the most vulnerable points ; they assured him that he was treated as insane, that his guardian was not accountable to him, but held his funds for the benefit of his relations that the expense of management was enormous, and was a robbery committed against him; and by such representations wrought him up to the fiercest indignation.

In this humour he regularly visited Mr C., and poured out a storm of abuse; but in a few minutes, by addressing his faculties in an agreeable way, he was calmed. Mr C. asked him whether men of genius were not pursued by envy, and whether he was well assured that the representations he had received were not dictated by that spirit, and intended merely to detract from the honour he enjoyed. This was a view of the case highly gratifying to his Self-esteem, and he readily seized upon it. Knowing his parsimony, Mr C. requested him to make the experiment whether his funds were not at his own disposal, and desired him to write a donation of L.50 to the Infirmary, or any charitable institution, and see whether it would not be paid ; or to take L.20, and amuse himself with an excursion in the country. Such was the constitution and state of his mind, that it was just as im. possible for him to have done either as to convert himself into a real Shakspeare; but, like many wiser persons, he had no idea that his actions were controlled by his dispositions ; he declined making these experiments as unnecessary, and retired quite satisfied that he possessed the uncontrolled disposal of his effects.

Some of his productions show strongly the state of his faculties. The following note is dated 25th February, 1823, and, in the profusion of assumed titles in it, forms an amusing illustration of the activity of his Self-esteem and Love of Approbation :-“ President D— herewith transmits his

compliments to President Combe, W. S. and requests to know “ why Mr T-L (Mr Combe's clerk) writes him a card " about some L.3, 19s. 4d., which afterwards he does not ac

knowledge personally. Physician D— A.M. LL.D. &c. "&c. having previously chalked it down in his day-book.“ Yours,

“T-D, M.D. F.R.S.E." In the month of May last he became seriously indisposed, but could not be persuaded to follow medical prescriptions,

« ПредишнаНапред »