288 ASTONISHMENT. CHAP. XII. fingers.,—or, again, to straighten the arms, extending them backwards with separated fingers,—are movements in complete antithesis to those preserved under an indif- ferent frame of mind, and they are, in consequence, un- consciously assumed by an astonished man. There is, also, often a desire to display surprise in a conspicuous manner, and the above attitudes are well fitted for this purpose. It may be asked why should surprise, and only a few other states of the mind, be exhibited by move- ments in antithesis to others. But this principle will not be brought into play in the case of those emotions, such as terror, great joy, suffering, or rage, which nat- urally lead to certain lines of action and produce certain effects on the body, for the whole system is thus pre- occupied; and these emotions are already thus expressed with the greatest plainness. There is another little gesture, expressive of astonish- ment, of which I can offer no explanation; namely, the hand being placed over the mouth or on some part of the head. This has been observed with so many races of man, that it mnst have some natural origin. A wild Australian was taken into a large room full of official papers, which surprised him greatly, and he cried out, cluck) cluck, cluck) putting the back of his hand towards his lips. Mrs. Barber says that the Kafirs and Fingoes express astonishment by a serious look and by placing the right hand upon the mouth, uttering the word mawo, which means ' wonderful/ The Bushmen are said13 to put their right hands to their necks, bending their heads backwards. Mr. Winwood Eeade has observed that the negroes on the West Coast of Africa, when surprised, clap their hands to their mouths, saying at the same time, " My mouth cleaves to me," i. e. to my hands; and 18 Husclike, ibid. p. 18.