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1824. At the same time it is proper to add, that the opinions contained in it cannot be safely predicated to be those really entertained by Mr Rolph ; for at the end of the table of contents we observe, “ N. B. The Editor is sorry to find so
many errors of the press have escaped his notice, and that “ want of time alone prevents him from giving a list of “ errata.” When we 'read the title-page, “ showing that “ anatomy, reason, common sense, and Scripture, are not in “ accordance with phrenological principles,” we were led to suspect
that the whole book might be one GREAT ERRATUM from beginning to end, because this title clearly imports the author's design to be, to upset anatomy, reason, and Scripture, on account of their inconsistency with phrenological principles. On perusing his work, however, we were satisfied that this could not be his meaning, and that he really intended to show that Phrenology was not in accordance with anatomy, reason, &c., and that therefore its principles must be false. We shall add a few passages, by way of contrast to Mr Rolph, from our highly respectable contemporary, the Philadelphia Journal, to which we solicit the attention of our readers.
Mr Rolph." Since this work has been in the press, another “ of the official journals of the phrenological triumvirate, viz. “ Messrs Gall, Špurzheim, and Combe, has made its appearance : “ in folly and abomination it is fully equal to any of the former o emanations from the phrenological skulls ;-in impudence and " audacity, it much exceeds any former phrenological effort. • The organ of Destructiveness now begins to display its deadly “ effect indeed ; since they, the craniologists, seem quite deter“ mined to utterly subvert ethics, metaphysics, and religion."
“ I hope and feel confident, that the public will soon discover “ this inductive science to be, what it really is, a scandalous and “ hitherto unparalleled delusion," &c. P. 37.
“ Flouren's experiments are far more worthy of the attention “ of the scientific and philosophic part of the public, than the “ wild, visionary, upstart, speculative theories, ridiculous and un“ philosophical experiments of Drs Gall and Spurzheim. They
may affect to laugh and sneer at these experiments – Mr “ Combe may employ a little of his logic, and attempt to over“ throw them by specious reasoning and fallacious argument, “ but it will soon appear whether the wild ravings, foolish spe“ culations, and untheological system of Drs G. and S. and Mr
« Combe,-that is, whether this new system, which began in
error, and is supported only by distorted facts and prejudiced “ conclusions, whether this system, which is opposed to ana“ tomy, philosophy, and common sense, will triumph over the “ united efforts of the friends of truth, philosophy, and morali
ty.” P. 44, 45.
si But how does Mr Combe account for these contrary pheno" mena? Why, in order to render void the arguments of some “ of the greatest physiologists who ever wrote or lived, he, Mr “ Combe, with a logic almost satanic, has attempted to subvert “ all that they have said.” P. 48.
“ Every one else is to be discredited and laughed at, in order “ that the fantasies and fooleries of Gall and Spurzheim may be « believed.
“ As my object in writing this work is to furnish a complete and “ perfect exposure of this baneful system of Phrenology." P. 64.
In explaining a sudden change in the character of Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, Mr Rolph has the following unparalleled piece of sublimity and grandeur :- What a dreadful “ and dire convulsion must have taken place in his skull!! “ The whole of it must have been shook to pieces; he must “ have had an earthquake in his brains, the right lobe must “ have changed place with the left ventricle,-the right ventricle “ with the left lobe,-and, in lieu of the baser organs of matter, "! the organs of Veneration, Benevolence, Hope, Firmness, &c. “ must have sprung up. The mine sprung in his brain far “ exceeds the discoveries of Congreve's bombs and shells, "rockets and exploders. The army of dry bones which were “ called into life and action, the account of which is related by “ Ezekiel, could not have created a greater commotion,” p. 77.
“ Let them then satisfactorily answer the following queries, “ before they attempt to palm upon us an infamous and delusive
system." P. 80. « Then, as a palliative to their infamous and horrid cant, they
say, they only know what organs dispose too not precisely “ the actions that will take place. So Mary Magdalene might “ have loved her Saviour from the organ of Amativeness," &c. &c. P. 88.
And, lastly, “ My object is not to inflame the passions, or ex“ cite the prejudices of the public against Phrenology. Magna “ est veritas et prevalebit. No, the utmost of my ambition is
to demonstrate the deadly mischiefs which Phrenology is cal“culated to produce, and to erect a standard of reason and “ truth, in opposition to its wild speculations and groundless “ assumptions." P. 93.
American Journal. “ When the late Dr Gordon penned his passionate notice “ of the doctrines, anatomical and physiological, of Gall “ and Spurzheim, little did he, or the confraternity con
“ ducting the Edinburgh Review, imagine that, in the lapse “ of a few years, the method of dissecting the brain, so as to
display its fibrous structure, and unfold its convolutions, re" commended and practised by the above-named gentlemen, "! would be very generally adopted, and acknowledged univer- sally as preferable to all former modes, -or that, within the " same period, the alleged ridiculous and reviled positions of
Craniology would assume such consistency and form, as to be “ ranked among the sciences, and stand foremost among the sys“ tems of the philosophy of the human mind.
“ Accredited in many parts of Germany,-taught in Paris as "a branch of medico-philosophical education by its able and “ eloquent founders,-embraced and supported in Edinburgh “ by a society composed of physicians, lawyers, divines, and. “ naturalists, --its truth avowed by men of various and exten“ sive knowledge in London,-Phrenology has crossed the At“ lantic, and found a reception, by no means discouraging, “ in places conspicuous for the zeal and ability with which “ general literature and the exact sciences, as well as me“ dical and legal knowledge, are cultivated and expounded. “ The current, at first adverse, now begins to set in its fa“ vour, and we have more reason to fear, at present, that its “ followers, flushed with success, may be too impetuously hur“ ried on, than we had formerly to apprehend their discourage“ ment at the little progress made. But the same love of truth, “ and conviction of having, in part, found it, which supported them “ amid evil report, in the first instance, will be a sufficient guarantee “ for the steadiness of their pursuit in time to come. If, as they
assure us, they have cleared away the rubbish accumulated
during former ages, we have a right to hope that, in its place, “ they will erect a temple of fair and ample proportions, the
porticos of which are to be crowded with people of all nations " and tongues, who shall hear continually uttered the lessons of “ wisdom and practical philosophy.
“ We have been led into this train of reflection on seeing the “ two works, the titles of which are prefixed to this
article, “ (The Phrenological Transactions, and Elements of Phreno
logy,' by Charles Caldwell, M. D. Professor of the Institutes « of Medicine in Transylvania University. Lexington, 1824.) “ They furnish a commentary, neither to be overlooked nor mis“ understood, on the nature, influence, and diffusion of the prin
ciples of Phrenology, which are thus brought home to the “ comprehension of every thinking mind, and applied to the
purposes of education, and the guidance of conduct. Each faculty of the mind will, in the new system, form a most in
teresting subject of philosophical inquiry, and may, to a cer“ tain extent, be studied separately from the other,—while the “ union of them all forms a beautiful exposition of individual cha“ racter, and an explanation of ihe apparently innumerable con“ tradictions of human nature.
“ The Transactions of the Plırenological Society of Edin
“ burgh, now before us, form a volume of no ordinary interest, “ whether we regard the subjects proposed for elucidation, or “ the candid and dispassionate manner in which they are treated " -and we freely submit it to be judged by the standard of a “ late eloquent female writer, (Madame de Staël), that ' meta
physics, arts, and sciences, all ought to be appreciated ac“ •cordingly as they contribute to the moral perfection of man
kind.” P. 172. “ We feel ourselves more peculiarly called upon to the frequent and open avowal of our conviction of the truth of this science, as a kind of atonement for having so long and so wil. fully declined inquiring into its merits, and for having
spoken of it with a warmth of intolerance which, we fear, “ may have been regarded as an infringement on the rules of “ politeness and a breach of courtesy. We may still farther “confess, and, in so doing, speak for many of our friends, that “ accident, more than any fixed intention of making ourselves “ acquainted with the philosophy of the human mind, first led “ to our knowledge of Phrenology. Months had elapsed with“ out ever inquiring after Gall and Spurzheim, though living “ in the same city with them,—and we might have left Paris, “ but for an introduction to one of those good easy men, whose
probity we are more apt to admire than their talent. This “ gentleman, in the course of conversation, alluded to Dr Spurz« heim's lectures on Phrenology, which were to commence on “ the following day, and spoke of them and the science in terms “ of approbation. In reply to our expressions of ridicule, he “ merely remarked, that before he heard the doctor lecture, he " thought as the present company then did on the subject; but “ he would add, in conclusion, that if we took the same trouble,
our conviction of the excellent tendency of the system would “ be as strong as his own. The proposition implied in this “ opinion was so reasonable, that we could make no answer, « and determined to avail ourselves of the opportunity thus of. “ fered, without, however, an expectation of our sentiments un
dergoing any change. We attended Dr Spurzheim's lectures to
gain fresh matter for ridicule, rather than with a hope to add “ to our stock of useful knowledge. The duration of the course
was short, and the vogue in which the new doctrines were “ seemed to justify the sacrifice of a few days. The first hour “ was sufficient to dispel the prejudices arising from preconceiv" ed notions of Dr S.'s manner. We did not, as we expected,
see a charlatan of the quai, with all his hurried utterance and “ vehement gestures, but a man calm and dispassionate in the “ delivery of his opinions, which, though advanced with philoso"phic caution, were supported by positive testimony, and occasion
ally embellished by a variety of analogical illustrations. De“ termined henceforth to listen to the doctor dispassionately,
we soon experienced a revolution in our mind, and felt that con“ viction of the truth of the great outlines of Phrenology had su
“ perseded prejudice and disbelief. We found, now, something
more practical and important in this method of studying the “ philosophy of the human mind, than by those we had for“ merly essayed. We had not possession of words so harmoni« ous in sound, or poetically collocated in writing, but we ob“ tained more definite and precise ideas of human nature, and a “ certain facility of analyzing the operations of the human
mind, and tracing the motives of conduct." P. 180.
“. Here we conclude our extracts from the Transactions of “ the Phrenological Society ;—and we hope they have been “ sufficiently copious and connected to show the scope and aim r of the science of Phrenology. We now see that, while pur- sued in all its details, it affords inexhaustible themes for in~ quiry. It may, at the same time, be brought to bear on all “ the dearest interests of humanity. It is the proper study of “ mankind,' which, like mysteries the most sacred, and truths “ the most sublime, may still be sneered at as visionary and “ absurd, by learned prejudice or licensed ignorance, but cannot “ fail, ere long, to arrest the attention, and engage the admira“ tion of every thinking mind. To bring about more promptly “ this favourable consummation, a Phrenological Journal is now
published quarterly in Edinburgh,” &c. P. 209.
Want of space alone prevents our giving a few more passages from the same paper, but we have given enough to show the spirit in which it is written, and we leave it to our readers to judge whether we do not justly feel a great increase of respect and esteem for the moral and intellectual qualities of a man who has thus magnanimity enough to retrace his steps, when he finds himself in the wrong, and to pursue, with redoubled ardour, the true paths of honour and philosophy; and who, from having, in ignorance, abused the new doctrines, now conscientiously, and with knowledge, declares, that " as an inquiry into the philosophy of mind, they must interest every profession and every individual."
PHRENOLOGY ILLUSTRATED BY QUOTATIONS FROM THE
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