80 THE PRINCIPLE OF THE DIRECT CHAP. III. offences and-put himself into a passion, unconsciously for the sake of reinvigorating himself; and since hear- ing this remark, I have occasionally recognized its full truth. Several other states of mind appear to be at first exciting, "but soon become depressing to an extreme degree. When a mother suddenly loses her child, some- times she is frantic with grief, and must be consid- ered to be in an excited state; she walks wildly about, tears her hair or clothes, and wrings her hands. This latter action is perhaps due to the principle of anti- thesis, betraying an inward sense of helplessness and that nothing can be done. The other wild and vio- lent movements may be in part explained by the relief experienced through muscular exertion, and in part by the undirected overflow of nerve-force from the excited sensorimn. But under the sudden loss of a beloved person, one of the first and commonest thoughts which occurs, is that something more might have been done to save the lost one. An excellent observer,12 in de- scribing the behaviour of a girl at the sudden death of her father, says she " went about the house wring- ing her hands like a creature demented, saying ' It was her fault;' ' I should never have left him;' ' If I had only sat up with him/ " &c. With such ideas vividly present before the mind, there would arise, through the principle of associated habit, the strongest tendency to energetic action of some kind. As soon as the sufferer is fully conscious that nothing can be done, despair or deep sorrow takes the place of frantic grief. The sufferer sits motionless, or gently rocks to and fro; the circulation becomes languid; res- piration is almost forgotten, and deep sighs are drawn. 12 Mrs. Oliphant, in her novel of * Miss Maioribanks," p. 362.