« ForrigeFortsæt »
but there is in children a persistence of savage psychologi. cal habit, and in the singing games of children a persistence of savage and barbaric practice. The courting, marriage, and funeral ceremonies of our savage forefathers are repeated like a faint and degraded echo in village green or school playground.
We leave the child and return to the folk whom I have already defined as the backward people among ourselves, and from their unwritten sagas and stories, their customs and beliefs, we can pick up the threads that have been dropped by the child. In certain of their oral traditions, especially in those which are told to the children, we find an unmistakable record of the clash of opposing races, but of a time long antecedent to history. In some of our fairytales we can recall the momentous struggle of the men of the Stone Age with those of the Age of Metals, and, in addi. tion, we can catch glimpses of the culture, habits, and religion of neolithic man.
In the customs and beliefs of the folk may still be traced many survivals of the pagan observances and religion of our ancestors.
In the life of the cultured European from his earliest infancy do we find milestones that mark the rate and extent of his progress, and all along this weary road, which it has taken mankind tens of thousands of years to traverse, do we find the tired ones--the laggards in the race of life—who mutely indicate, if we have but discrimination enough to read it, a record of the painful but glorious ascent from the brute to the human.
Wherever man is, there can anthropology be studied. There is no need to travel to the uttermost parts of the earth; we can prosecute researches or find food for reflection in our own nurseries, in the playground, on the village green, even in our cities.
As Alphonse Karr said to his friend:
"Make you the tour of the world, I will make the tour of my garden.
"What are you going to see abroad? How proud you will be in your first letter to tell me you have seen women tattooed and painted in diverse colours, with rings in their noses.
"And I will answer you : 'Well, my good friend, what occasion was there for going so far? Why did you go further than two streets from your own house? There was nothing to prevent your looking at your sister-in-law, who, after the example of a hundred other women you are acquainted with, puts pearl white and rouge upon her brow and cheeks, black upon her eyelids, blue to increase the apparent fulness of her veins, and passes rings through her ears in the same manner that savage women pass them through their noses. Pray, why is it more strange to pierce one cartilage than another ? Can the difference be worth going so far to see ?'”
So writes Alphonse Karr, and this is the true spirit of the philosopher.'
Alphonse Karr, A Tour round my Garden, edited by Rev. J. G. Wood, 1865, p. 9.
THE STUDY OF MAN
MEASUREMENTS AND THEIR IMPORTANCE
NO science can progress or be definite without measureTV ments of one sort or another. What, then, are those made in anthropological inquiries, and for what purposes are they made ?
Speaking generally, we may roughly class anthropological measuring into three groups:
1. As a means of analysis and classification.
(1) The Identification of Criminals.—Let us commence with the least important from a scientific point of viewthat for the recognition of individuals. People whom it is necessary to recognise with such precision are generally those who are wanted by the police.
Few of us probably have ever so much as given a thought to the subject of the identification of criminals, but a little reflection will lead to the conclusion that this is really an important problem. In this, as in so many other matters relating to criminology, the British are far behind some foreign nations.
The methods hitherto adopted by our Government have been inadequate, and, consequently, largely ineffectual, although a very successful system of criminal identification has been in operation in France for a dozen years. In 1895, however, a fresh departure was made, and Dr. Garson, the well-known anthropologist, was appointed by the Government to take charge of a new department in England for the identification of criminals.
It will be obvious that a precise method of identification not only expedites justice and saves expense, but at the same time it is a safeguard to the prisoner, preventing him from being punished for the crimes of others.
The identification by means of measurements was inaugurated in Paris towards the close of 1882, according to the methods advocated by M. Alphonse Bertillon in 1879. This system has been extended to the whole of France by M. Herbette, Director of the Penitentiary Department.'
The subject we are about to consider is a method by which habitual criminals may be recognised who give a false name or refuse to give one at all.
An old offender, once more in the hands of the law for some fresh offence that he has committed, has every reason for wishing to conceal his real name or the name under which he has been previously convicted. He sometimes takes the name of a person who has never been accused of any offence. He thus escapes the heavier punishment which
'Cf. English translation of an address, given by M. Louis Herbette, at the International Penitentiary Congress at Rome, November, 1885, Melun, Administrative Printing, 1887; also A. Bertillon, “ Notice sur le Fonctionnement du Service d'Identification de la Préfecture de Police," Ann. Stat, de la Ville de Paris, 1887 (1889); and F. J. Mouat, “Notes on M. Bertillon's Discourse on the Anthropometric Measurement of Criminals,” Journ. Anth. Inst., xx., 1890, p. 182.