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Full text of "Expression Of The Emotions In Man And Animals"

200

EXPRESSION OF JOY:

CHAP. VIII.

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surface; but the surface on which we sit offers a marked
exception to this rule. According to Gratiolet,7 certain
nerves are much more sensitive to tickling than others.
From the fact that a child can hardly tickle itself, or in
a much less degree than when tickled by another person,
it seems that the precise point to be touched must not
be known; so with the mind, something unexpected—a
novel or incongruous idea which breaks through an
habitual train of thought—appears to be a strong ele-
ment in the ludicrous.

The sound of laughter is prodiiced by a deep inspira-
tion followed by short, interrupted, spasmodic contrac-
tions of the chest, and especially of the diaphragm.8
Hence we hear of "laughter holding both his sides."
From the shaking of the body, the head nods to and fro.
The lower jaw often quivers up and down, as is likewise
the case with some species of baboons, when they are
much pleased.

During laughter the mouth is opened more or less
widely, with the corners drawn much backwards, as
well as a little upwards; and the upper lip is somewhat
raised. The drawing back of the corners is best seen
in moderate laughter, and especially in a broad smile—
the latter epithet showing how the mouth is widened.
In the accompanying figs. 1—3, Plate III., different
degrees of moderate laughter and smiling have been'
photographed. The figure of the little girl, with the
hat, is by Dr. Wallich, and the expression was a genuine
one; the other two are by Mr. Rejlander. Dr. Duchenne
repeatedly insists ° that, under the emotion of joy, the

7  * Be la Physionomie/ p. 186.

8  Sir C. Bell (Anat. of Expression, p. 147) makes some
remarks   on   the   movement   of   the   diaphragm   during
laughter.

ft  *Mecanisme  de  la  Physionomie   Humaine,'   Album,
Leg-ende vi.