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M. A.,   F. R. S.,   ETC.




INTRODUCTION............................................Pages 1-26

The three chief principles stated—The first principle—Serviceable ac-
tions become habitual in association with certain states of the mind,
and are performed whether or not of service in each particular case—
The force of habit—Inheritance—Associated habitual movements in
man—Keflex actions—Passage of habits into reflex actions—Asso-
ciated habitual movements in the lower animals—Concluding re-
marks ..................................................... 2T-49


The Principle of Antithesis—Instances in the clog and cat—Origin of

the principle—Conventional signs—The principle of antithesis has

not arisen from opposite actions being consciously performed under

opposite impulses........................................... 50-65

The principle of the direct action of the excited nervous system on the
body, independently of the will and in part of habit—Change of
colour in the hair—Trembling of the muscles—Modified secretions—
Perspiration—Expression of extreme pain—Of rage, great joy, and
terror—Contrast between the emotions which cause and do not cause
expressive movements—Exciting and depressing states of the mind—
Summary.................................................. 66-82

The emission of sounds—Vocal sounds—Sounds otherwise produced—
Erection of the dermal appendages, hairs, feathers, &c., under the
emotions of anger and terror—The drawing back of the cars as a prep-
aration for fighting, and as an expression of anger—Erection of the

ears and raiding the head, a sign of attention................ 83-114






The Bog, various expressive movements of—Cats—Horses—Ruminants
—Monkeys, their expression of joy and affection—Of pain—Anger-
Astonishment and Terror........................... Pages 115-145



The screaming and weeping of infants—Form of features—Age at which
weeping commences—The effects of habitual restraint on weeping-
Sobbing—Cause of the contraction of the muscles round the eyes dur-
ing screaming—Cause of the secretion of tears.............. 140-175

General effect of grief on the system—Obliquity of the eyebrows under
suffering—On the cause of the obliquity of the eyebrows—On the de-
pression of the corners of the mouth....................... 170-105


Laughter primarily the expression of joy—Ludicrous ideas—Movements
of the features during laughter—Nature of the sound produced—The
secretion of tears during loud laughter—Gradation from loud laughter
to gentle smiling—High, spirits—The expression of love—Tender feel-
ings—Devotion........................................... 19G-21J)



The act of frowning—Reflection with an effort or with the perception of
something difficult or disagreeable—Abstracted meditation—Ill-tem-
per—Moroseness—Obstinacy—Sulkiness and pouting—Decision or
determination—The firm closure of the mouth.............. 220-23G


Hatred—Rage, effects of on the system—Uncovering of the tooth—Rago
in the insane—Anger and indignation—As expressed by the various
races of man—Sneering and defiance—The uncovering of the canine
tooth on one side of the face............................... 237-252


Contempt, scorn and disdain, variously expressed—Derisive smile—
Gestures expressive of contempt—Disgust—Guilt, deceit, pride, etc.—
Helplessness or impotence—Patience—Obstinacy—Shrugging the
shoulders common to most of the races of man— Signs of affirmation
and negation............................................. 253-277

CONTENTS.                                   y

Surprise, astonishment—Elevation of the ej'ebrows—Opening the mouth
—Protrusion of the lips—Gestures accompanying surprise—Admira-
tion—Fear—Terror—Erection of the hair—Contraction of the platys-
ma muscle—Dilatation of the pupils—Horror—Conclusion.

Pages 278-308


Nature of a blush—Inheritance—The parts of the body most affected-
Blushing in the various races of man—Accompanying gestures—Con-
fusion of mind—Causes of blushing—Self-attention, the fundamental
element—Shyness—Shame, from broken moral laws and conventional
rules—Modesty—Theory of blushing—Recapitulation....... 30y-34t>

The three leading principles which have determined the chief move-
ments of expression—Their inheritance—On the part which, the will
and intention have played in the acquirement of various expressions
—The instinctive recognition of expression—The bearing of our sub-
ject on the specific unity of tbe races of man—On the successive ac-
quirement of various expressions by the progenitors of man—The im-
portance of expression—Conclusion........................ S47-3G6



1.  Diagram of the muscles of the face, from Sir C. Bell............    24

2.           "                     "                  «                Henle................    24

3.            a                        it                    u                  -it    ................    25

4.  Small dog watching a cat on a table...........................    43

5.  Bog approaching another dog with hostile intentions...........    52

6.  Dog in a humble and affectionate frame of mind...............    53

7.  Half-bred Shepherd Dog.....................................    54

8.  Dog caressing his master......................................    55

9.  Cat, savage, and prepared to fight.............................    58

10.  Cat in an affectionate frame of mind___.......................    59

11.  Sound-producing quills from the tail of the Porcupine..........    93

12.  Hen driving away a dog from her chickens....................    98

13.  Swan driving away an intruder...............................    99

14.  Head of snarling dog.........................................  117

15.  Cat terrified at a dog.........................................  125

16.  Cynopitliecus niger, in a placid condition......................  135

17.  The same, when pleased by being caressed....................  135

18.  Chimpanzee disappointed and sulky...........................  139

19.  Photograph of an insane woman..............................  296

20.  Terror......................................................  299

21.  Horror and Agony...........................................  306

Plate    I. to face page 147.
"      II.        "         178.

"    III.        "         200.

"     IV.         "          248.


V. to face page 254.
VI.        "          264.

VII.        "          300.

N. .#.—Several of the figures in these seven Heliotype Plates have
been reproduced from photographs, instead of from the original nega-
tives; and they are in consequence somewhat indistinct. Nevertheless
they are faithful copies, and are much superior for my purpose to any
drawing, however carefully executed.




MAISTY works have been written on Expression, but a
greater number on Physiognomy,—that is, on the recog-
nition of character through the study of the permanent
form of the features. With this latter subject I am not
here concerned. The older treatises/ which I have con-
sulted, have been of little or no service to nie. The
famous £ Conferences'2 of the painter Le Bran, pub-
lished in 1667, is the best known ancient work, and con-
tains some good remarks. Another somewhat old essay,
namely, the c Discours/ delivered 1774-1782, by the
well-known Dutch anatomist Camper,3 can hardly be
considered as having made any marked advance in the
subject. The following works, on the contrary, deserve
the fullest consideration.

Sir Charles Bell, so illustrious for his discoveries in
physiology, published in 1806 the first edition, and in

1 J. Parsons, in Ms paper in the Appendix to the ' Philo-
sophical Transactions * for 1746, p. 41, gives a list of forty-
one old authors who have written on Expression.

2  * Conferences   snr  Fexpression  des  differents  Carac-
teres  des   Passions.'      Paris,   4to,   1667.    I  always   quote
from the republication of the * Conferences' in the edition
of Lavater,  by Moreau, which appeared in 1820, as given
in vol. ix. p. 257.

3  * Diseours par Pierre Camper sur le moyen de repre-
senter les diverses passions,' <fee.   1792.


2     *                        INTRODUCTION.

1844 the third edition of his ' Anatomy and Philosophy
of Expression/ * He may with justice be said, not only
to have laid the foundations of the subject as a branch
of science, but to have built up a noble structure. His
work is in every way deeply interesting; it includes
graphic descriptions of the various emotions, and is ad-
mirably illustrated. It is generally admitted that his
service consists chiefly in having shown the intimate rela-
tion which exists between the movements of expression
and those of respiration. One of the most important
points, small as it may at first appear, is that the muscles
round the eyes are involuntarily contracted during violent
expiratory efforts, in order to protect these delicate or-
gans from the pressure of the blood. This fact, which
has been fully investigated for me with the greatest kind-
ness by Professors Bonders of Utrecht, throws, as we shall
hereafter see, a flood of light on several of the most im-
portant expressions of the human countenance. The
merits of Sir C. Bell's work have been undervalued or
quite ignored by several foreign waiters, but have been
fully admitted by some, for instance by M. Lcmoine,0
who with great justice says: .—" Le livre cle Ch. Bell
devrait 6tre me"dite par quiconque essaye de faire parler
le visage cle I'homme, par les philosophes aussi bien que
par les artistes, car, sous une apparence plus leg£re et
sous le pre"texte de 1'esthetique, c'est un des plus beaux
monuments de la science des rapports du physique et
du moral."

From reasons which will presently be assigned, Sir

* I always quote from the tliird edition, 1844, which
was published after the death of Sir C. Bell, and contains
his latest corrections. The first edition of 1806 is much
inferior in merit, and does not include some of his more
important views.

5 * De la Physionomie et de la Parole,' par Albert Le-
moine, 1865, p. 101.

INTRODUCTION.                              3

C3- Bell did not attempt to follow out his views as far as
they might have been carried, lie does not try to ex-
plain why dillorcnt muscles are brought into action
under dill'ercnt emotions; why, for instance., the inner
uiids of the eyebrows are raised, and the corners of the
nsouth depressed, by a person sulTering from grief or . .              if

anxiety.                                                                                               I

In 1807 M. Moreau edited an edition of   Lavater                          }'*

on Physiognomy,0 in which lie incorporated several of                          //

his own essays, containing excellent descriptions of the                          $

movements of the.facial muscles, together with many                          i1

valuable remarks.   He throws, however, very little light                          •'*

on  the philosophy of the subject.     For instance, M.                          ?

Moreau, in speaking of the act of frowning, that is, of
the contraction of the muscle called by French writers                          ;

the   sourcilier (corrngator   s'liperciUi), remarks   with                         ;•

truth :—" Cette action des sourciliers est un des symp-

c * L'Art de les Homines,' <y,e., par (J. Lavater.

Tlie earliest edition of this work, referred to in the preface.                            |

to the edition of 1820 in ten volumes, as containing* the
observations of M. Moreau, is said to have been published
m 1807; and I have no doubt that this is correct, because                            ,

the * Notice stir Lavater ' at the commencement of volume                            >

i.  is dated April 13, 1800.    In some bibliographical works,                            f

however, the date of 1805—1.809 is given, but it seems im-
possible that 1805 can be correct. Dr. Duchenne remarks
(* Mecanisme de la Vhysionomie Humaine,' 8vo edit. 1SGJ2,
p. 5, and 'Archives Generates de Medeeine,' Jan. et Fev.                          \

1802)   that  M.  Aloreau   " «•  condone pour xon  <>nrra</c  un                                  ]

article important" &c., in the year 1805; and I find in vol-
ume i. of the edition of 1820 passages bearing the dates of
December 12, 1805, and another January 5, 1806, besides
that of April 13, 1800, above referred to. In consequence
of some of these passages having thus been composed in
1805, Dr. Dnchenne assigns to M. Moreau the priority over
Mir G. Bell, whose work, as we have seen, was published
in 1800. This is a very unusual manner of determining1
tlie priority of scientific works; but such questions are
erf extremely little importance in comparison with their
relative merits. The passages above quoted from M.
Moreau and from Le Brnn are taken in this and all other
eases from the edition of 1820 of Lavater, torn. iv. p. 228,

. torn. ix. p. 270.                                                                                        ,

4                              INTRODUCTION

t&mes les plus tranches de Pexpression des affections
penibles on concentrees." He then adds that these
muscles, from their attachment and position, are fitted
" a resserrer, a concentrer les principaux traits de la face,
comme il convient dans toutes ces passions vraiment
oppressives ou profondes, dans ces affections dont le
sentiment semble porter Forganisation a revenir sur
elle-m£me, a se contracter et a s^amoindrir^ comme pour
offrir moins de prise et de surface a des impressions re-
doutables ou importunes." He who thinks that remarks
of this kind throw any light on the meaning or origin
of the different expressions, takes a very different view
of the subject to what I do.

In the above passage there is but a slight, if any,
advance in the philosophy of the subject, beyond that
reached by the painter Le Brim, who, in 1667, in de-
.scribing the expression of fright, says:—"Le sourcil
qui est abaisse d'un cote* et elevS de 1'autre, fait voir
que la partie elevee semble le vouloir joindre au cerveau
pour le garantir du mal que I'&me aper9oit, et le cote
qui est abaisse et qui parait enfl6, nous fait trouver dans
cet etat par les esprits qui viennent du cerveau en abon-
dance, comme pour couvrir Tame et la defendre du mal
qu'elle craint; la bouche fort ouverte fait voir le saisisse-
ment du coeur, par le sang qui se retire vers lui, ce qui
1'oblige, voulant respirer, a faire tin effort qui est cause
que la bouche s'ouvre extrfimement, et qui, lorsqu'il
passe par les organes de la voix, forme un son qui n'est
point articule; -que si les muscles et les veines parais-
sent enfl6s, ce n'est que par les esprits que le cerveau
envoie en ces parties-la." I have thought the fore-
going sentences worth quoting, as specimens of the
surprising nonsense which has been written on the sub-

' The Physiology or Mechanism of Blushing/ "by Dr.

INTRODUCTION.                              5

Burgess, appeared in 1839, and to this work I shall fre-
quently refer in my thirteenth Chapter.

In 1862 Dr. Duchenne published two editions, in
folio and octavo, of his ' Mecanisme de la Physionomie
Humaine/ in which he analyses by means of electricity,
and illustrates by magnificent photographs, the move-
ments of .the facial muscles.   He has generously per-
mitted me to copy as many of his photographs as I de-
sired.   His works have been spoken lightly of, or quite
passed over, by some of his countrymen.   It is possible
that Dr. Duchenne may have exaggerated the impor-
tance of the contraction of single muscles in giving ex-
pression; for, owing to the intimate manner in whicli                         |(
the muscles are connected, as may be seen in Henle's                          }f
anatomical drawings 7—the best I believe ever published                           f
—it is difficult to believe in their separate action.   Never-                            |
theless, it is manifest that Dr. Duchenne clearly appre-                           |
hended this and other sources of error, and as it is known                           -"
that he was eminently successful   in   elucidating the                            ?
physiology of the muscles of the hand by the aid of elec-                            t
tricity, it is probable that he is generally in the right                            |
about the muscles of   the face.     In my opinion, Dr.                            |
Duchenne has greatly advanced the subject by his treat-                            *'
ment of it.   No one has more carefully studied the con-                            *
traction of each separate muscle, and the consequent                            ;
furrows produced on the skin.   He has also, and this is                           *
a very important service, shown which muscles are least                            ',
under the separate control of the will.   He enters very                           '(
little into theoretical considerations, and seldom at-                           i
tempts to explain why certain muscles and not others                           f
contract under the influence of certain emotions.                                        |

A distinguished French anatomist, Pierre Gratiolet,

7 ' Handbuch der Systematischen Anatomic des Men-                           I

schen.'   Band I.   Dritte Abtheilung, 1858.                                '                       1



gave a course of lectures on Expression at the Sorbonne,
and his notes were published (1865) after his death,
under the title of c De la Physionpmie et des Mouve-
ments d'Expression/ This is a very interesting work,
full of valuable observations. His theory is rather com-
plex, and, as far as it can be given in a single sentence
(p. 65), is as follows:—" II results, de tous les faits que
j'ai rappeles, que les sens, ^imagination et la pensee elle-
meme, si elevee, si abstraite qu'on la suppose, ne peti-
vent s'exercer sans eveiller un sentiment correlatif, et
que ce sentiment se traduit directement, sympathique-
ment, symboliquement ou metaphoriquement, dans
toutes les spheres des organs exterieurs, qui la racontent
tous, suivant leur-mode d'action propre, comme si chacun
d'eux avait ete directement affecte."

Gratiolet appears to overlook inherited habit, and
even to some extent habit in the individual; and there-
fore he fails, as it seems to me, to give the right explana-
tion, or any explanation at all, of many gestures and ex-
pressions. As an illustration of what he calls symbolic
movements, I will quote his remarks (p. 37), taken from
M. Chevreul, on a man playing at billiards. " Si une
bille devie leg£rement de la direction que le joueur pr6-
tend lui imprimer, ne 1'avez-vous pas vu cent fois la pous-
ser du regard, de la t6te et me'me des e*paules, comme si
ces mouvements, purement symboliques, pouvaient recti-
fier son trajet? Des mouvements non rnoins significatifs
se produisent qiiand la bille manque d'une impulsion
suffisante. Et chez les joueurs novices, ils sont quelque-
fois accuses aii point d'6veiller le sourire sur les 16vres
des spectateuis." Such movements, as it appears to me,
may be attributed simply to habit. As often as a man
has wished to move an object to one side, he has always
pushed it to that side; when forwards, he has pushed it


forwards; and if he has wished to arrest it; he has pulled
backwards. Therefore, when a man sees his ball travel-
ling in a wrong direction, and he intensely wishes it to
go in another direction, he cannot avoid, from long habit,
unconsciously performing movements which in other
cases he has found effectual.

As an instance of sympathetic movements Gratiolet
gives (p. 212) the following case:—" un jeune chien a
oreilles droites, auquel son maltre presente de loin quel-
que viande appetissante, fixe avec ardear ses yeux sur cet
objet dont il suit tons les mouvements, et pendant que
les yeux regardent, les deux oreilles se portent en avant
conime si cet objet pouvait 6tre entendu." Here, in-
stead of speaking of sympathy between the ears and eyes,
it appears to me more simple to believe, that as dogs
during many generations have, whilst intently looking
at any object, pricked their ears in order to perceive any
sound; and conversely have looked intently in the direc-
tion of a sound to which they may have listened, the
movements of these organs have become firmly associ-
ated together through long-continued habit.

Dr. Piderit published in 1859 an essay on Expression,
which I have not seen, but in which, as he states, he
forestalled Gratiolet in many of his views. In 1867
he published his ' Wissensehaftliches System der Mimik
und Physiognomik.' It is hardly possible to give in a
few sentences a fair notion of his views; perhaps the
two following sentences will tell as much as can be
briefly told: "the muscular movements of expression
are in part related to imaginary objects, and in part to
imaginary sensorial impressions. In this proposition
lies the key to the comprehension of all expressive mus-
cular movements." (s. 25.) Again, "Expressive move-
ments manifest themselves chiefly in the numerous and
mobile muscles of the face, partly because the nerves



by which they are set into motion originate in the most
immediate vicinity of the mind-organ, but partly also
because these muscles serve to support the organs of
sense." (s. 26.) If Dr. Piderit had studied Sir C. Bell's
work., he would probably not have said (s. 101) that vio-
lent laughter causes a frown from partaking of the na-
ture of pain; or that with infants (s. 103) the tears irri-
tate the eyes., and thus excite the contraction of the sur-
rounding muscles. Many good remarks are scattered
throughout this volume, to which I shall hereafter

Short discussions on Expression may be found in
various works, which need not here be particularised.
Mr. Bain, however, in two of his works has treated the
subject at some length. He says,8 "I look upon the
expression so-called as part and parcel of the feeling.
I believe it to be a general law of the mind that, along
with the fact of inward feeling or consciousness, there
is a diffusive action or excitement over the bodily mem-
bers." In another place he adds, " A very considerable
number of the facts may be brought under the following
principle: namely, that states of pleasure are connected
with an increase, and states of pain with an abatement,
of some, or all, of the vital functions." But the above
law of the diffusive action of feelings seems too general
to throw much light on special expressions.

Mr. Herbert Spencer, in treating of the Peelings in
his 'Principles of Psychology* (1855), makes the fol-
lowing remarks:—"Pear, when strong, expresses itself
in cries, in efforts to hide or escape, in palpitations and
tremblings; and these are just the manifestations that

8 ' The Senses and the Intellect,' 2nd edit. 1864, pp. 96
and 288. The preface to the first edition of this work is
dated June, 1855. See also the 2nd edition of Mr. Bain's
work on the ' Emotions and Will.5

INTRODUCTION.                               9

would accompany an actual experience of the evil feared.
The destructive passions are shown in a general tension
of the muscular system, in gnashing of the teeth and
protrusion of the claws, in dilated eyes and nostrils,
in growls; and these are weaker forms of the actions
that accompany the killing of prey/5 Here we have,
as I believe, the true theory of a large number of expres-
sions; but the chief interest and difficulty of the subject
lies in following out the wonderfully complex results. I
infer that some one (but who he is I have not been able
to ascertain) formerly advanced a nearly similar view,
for Sir C. Bell says,9 " It has been maintained that what
are called the external signs of passion, are only the con-
comitants of those voluntary movements which the struc-
ture renders necessary." Mr. Spencer has also pub-
lished 10 a valuable essay on the physiology of Laughter,
in which, he insists on "the general law that feeling
passing a certain pitch, habitually vents itself in bodily
action; " and that " an overflow of nerve-force undirected
by any motive, will manifestly take first the most
habitual routes; and if these do not suffice, will next
overflow into the less habitual ones." This law I believe
to be of the highest importance in throwing light on our

0 ' The Anatomy of Expression,' 3rd edit. p. 121.

10  ' Essays, Scientific, Political, and Speculative,' Second
Series, 1863, p. 111.    There is a discussion on Lang-liter in
the First Series of Essays, which discussion seems to me
of very inferior value.

11  Since the publication of the essay just referred to,
Mr. Spencer has written another, on " Morals and Moral
Sentiments," in the ' Fortnightly Eeview,' April 1, 1871, p.
426.    He has, also, now published his final conclusions in
vol. ii. of the second edit, of the ' Principles of Psychology,'
1872, p. 530.   I may state, in order that I may not toe ac-
cused of trespassing on Mr. Spencer's domain, that I an-
nounced in my ' Descent of Man,' tha-t I had then written
a part of the present volume:   my first MS. notes on the
subject of expression bear the date of the year 1838.


10                           INTRODUCTION.

All the authors who have written on Expression,
with the exception of Mr. Spencer—the great expounder
of the principle of Evolution—appear to have been
firmly convinced that species, man of course included,
came into existence in their present condition. Sir C.
Bell, being thus convinced, maintains that many of
our facial muscles are " purely instrumental in expres-
sion;" or are "a special provision" for this sole ob-
ject.12 But the simple fact that the anthropoid apes
possess the same facial muscles as we do,13 renders it
very improbable that these muscles in our case serve
exclusively for expression; for no one, I presume, would
be inclined to admit that monkeys have been endowed
with special muscles solely for exhibiting their hideous
grimaces. Distinct uses, independently of expression,
can indeed be assigned with much probability for almost
all the facial muscles.

Sir C. Bell evidently wished to draw as broad a dis-
tinction as possible between man and the lower animals;
and he consequently asserts that with " the lower crea-
tures there is no expression but what may be referred,
more or less plainly, to their acts of volition or neces-
sary instincts." He further maintains that their faces
" seem chiefly capable of expressing rage and fear."14
But man himself cannot express love and humility by
external signs, so plainly as does a dog, when with droop-
ing ears, hanging lips, flexuous body, and wagging tail,
he meets his beloved master. Isfor can these movements          fP

13' Anatomy of Expression,' 3rd edit. pp. 98, 121, 131.                  I

18 Professor Owen expressly states  (Proc. Zoolog. Soc.           /

1830, p. 28) that this is the case with respect to the Orang,
and specifies all the more important muscles which are           »•

well known to serve with man for the expression of his
feelings. See, also, a description of several of the facial
muscles in the Chimpanzee, by Prof. Macalister, in * Annals           I

and Magazine of Natural History,' vol. vii. May, 1871, p.
342.                                                                                                   r

14 * Anatomy of Expression,* pp. 121, 138.

INTEODUCTION.                              H

in the dog be explained by acts of volition or necessary
instincts, any more than the beaming eyes and smiling
cheeks of a man when he meets an old friend. If Sir
0. Bell had been questioned about the expression of
affection in the dog, he would no doubt have answered
that this animal had been created with special instincts,,
adapting him for association with man, and that all
further enquiry on the subject was superfluous.

Although Gratiolet emphatically denies15 that any
muscle has been developed solely for the sake of ex-
pression, he seems never to have reflected on the prin-
ciple of evolution. He apparently looks at each species
as a separate creation. So it is with the other writers
on Expression. For instance, Dr. Duchenne, after
speaking of the movements of the limbs, refers to those
which give expression to the face, and remarks:1(t " Le
createur n'a done pas eu a se pr&occuper ici des besoins
de la mecanique; il a pu, selon sa sagesse, ou—que Ton
me pardonne cette maniere de parler—par une divine
fantaisie, mettre en action tel ou tel muscle, un seul ou
plusieurs muscles d la fois, lorsqu'il a voulu que les signes
caracteristiques des passions, m6me les plus fugaces, fus-
sent Merits passag^rement sur la face de 1'homme. Ce
langage de la physionomie une fois cr66, il lui a suffi,
pour le rendre universel et immuable, de donner d tout
£tre humain la facult6 instinctive d'exprimer toujours
ses sentiments par la contraction des m^mes muscles."

Many writers consider the whole subject of Expres-
sion as inexplicable. Thus the illustrious physiologist
Miiller, says,17 " The completely different expression of

15 ' Be la Physionomie,' pp. 12, 73.

M ' Mecanisme de la Plvysionoinie Humaine,' 8vo edit,
p. 31.

17 ' Elements of Physiology,' English translation, vol.
ii. p. 934,



the features in 'different passions shows that,, according
to the kind of feeling excited, entirely different groups
•of the fibres of the facial nerve are acted on. Of the
cause of this we are quite ignorant."

No doubt as long as man and all other animals are
viewed as independent creations, an effectual stop is put
to our natural desire to investigate as far as possible
the causes of Expression. By this doctrine, anything
and everything can be equally well explained; and it
has proved as pernicious with respect to Expression
as to every other branch of natural history. "With
mankind some expressions, such as the bristling of the
hair under the influence of extreme terror, or the un-
covering of the teeth under that of furious rage, can
hardly be understood, except on the belief that man once
existed in a much lower and animal-like condition. The
community of certain expressions in distinct though
allied species, as in the movements of the same facial
muscles during laxighter by man and by various mon-
keys, is rendered somewhat more intelligible, if we be-
lieve in their descent from a common progenitor. He
who admits on general grounds that the structure and
habits of all animals have been gradually evolved, will
look at the whole subject of Expression in a new and
interesting light.

The study of Expression is difficult, owing to the
movements being often extremely slight, and of a fleet-
ing nature. A difference may be 'clearly perceived,
and yet it may be impossible, at least I have found it
so, to state in what the difference consists. When we
witness any deep emotion, our sympathy is so strongly
excited, that close observation is forgotten or rendered
almost impossible; of which fact I have had many curi-
ous proofs. Our imagination is another and still more
serious source of error; for if from the nature of the

INTEODTICTION.                             13

circumstances we expect to see any expression, we readily
imagine its presence. Notwithstanding Dr. Duchenne's
great experience, lie for a long time fancied, as he states,
that several muscles contracted under certain emotion?,
whereas he ultimately convinced himself that the move-
ment was confined to a single muscle.

In order to acquire as good a foundation as possible,
and to ascertain, independently of common opinion,
how far particular movements of the features and
"gestures are really expressive of certain states of the
mind, I have found the following means the most serv-
iceable. In the first place, to observe infants; for they
exhibit many emotions, as Sir C. Bell remarks, a with
extraordinary force; " whereas, in after life, some of
our expressions " cease to have the pure and simple
source from which they spring in infancy." 18

In the second place,, it occurred to me that the in-
sane ought to be studied, as they are liable to the strong-
est passions, and give uncontrolled vent to them. I had,
myself, no opportunity of doing this, so I applied to Dr.
Maudsley and received from him an introduction to Dr.
J. Crichton Browne, who has charge of an immense asy-
lum near Wakefield, and who, as I found, had already
attended to the subject. This excellent observer lias
with unwearied kindness sent me copious notes and de-
scriptions, with valuable suggestions on many points;
and I can hardly over-estimate the value of Ms assist-
ance. I owe also, to the kindness of Mr. Patrick Xieol,
of the Sussex Lunatic Asylum, interesting statements
on two or three points.

Thirdly Dr. Duchenne galvanized, as we have already
seen, certain muscles in the face of an old man, whose
skin was little sensitive, and thus produced various ex-

18 ' Anatomy of Expression,* 3rd edit. p. 198.

I if

........ J' '

14:                             INTRODUCTION.

pressions which were photographed on a large scale. It
fortunately occurred to me to show several of the best
plates, without a word of explanation, to above twenty
educated persons of various ages and both sexes, asking
them, in each case, by what emotion or feeling the old
man was supposed to be agitated; and I recorded their
answers in the words which they used. Several of the
expressions were instantly recognised by almost every-
one, though described in not exactly the same terms;
and these may, I think, be relied on as truthful, and
will hereafter be specified. On the other hand, the most
widely different judgments were pronounced in regard
to some of them. This exhibition was of use in another
way, by convincing me how easily we may be misguided
by our imagination; for when I first looked through
Dr. Duchenne's photographs, reading at the same time
the text, and thus learning what was intended, I was
struck with admiration at the truthfulness of all, with
only a few exceptions. Nevertheless, if I had examined
them without any explanation, no doubt I should have
been as much perplexed, in some cases, as other persons
have been.

Fourthly, I had hoped to derive much aid from the
great masters in painting and sctilpture, who are such
close observers. Accordingly, I have looked at photo-
graphs and engravings of many well-known works;
but, with a few exceptions, have not thus profited. The
reason no doubt is, that in works of art, beauty is-the
chief object; and strongly contracted facial muscles
destroy beauty.19 The story of the composition is gen-
erally told with wonderful force and truth by skilfully
given accessories.

Fifthly, it seemed to me highly important to ascer-

19  See remarks to this effect in Lessing's
translated by W. Boss, 1836, p. 19.

' Laocoon,'

INTEOBUCTION".                              15

tain whether the same expressions and gestures prevail,
as has often been asserted without much evidence., with
all the races of mankind, especially with those who have
associated but little with Europeans. Whenever the
same movements of the features or body express the
same emotions in several distinct races of man, we may
infer with much probability, that such expressions are
true ones,—that is, are innate or instinctive. Con-
ventional expressions or gestures, acquired by the in-
dividual during early life, would probably have dif-
fered in the different races, in the same manner as do
their languages. Accordingly I circulated, early in the
year 1867, the following printed queries with a request,
which has been fully responded to, that actual observa-
tions, and not memory, might be trusted. These queries
were written after a considerable interval of time, dur-
ing which my attention had been otherwise directed,
and I can now see that they might have been greatly
improved. To some of the later copies, I appended,
in manuscript, a few additional remarks:—

(1.) Is astonishment expressed by the eyes and mouth
being- opened wide, and by the eyebrows being
raised ?

(2.) Does shame excite a blush when the colour of the
skin allows it to be visible? and especially how
low down the body does the blush extend?

(3.) When a man is indignant or defiant does he frown,
hold his body and head erect, square his shoulders
and clench his fists?

(4.) When considering deeply on any subject, or trying
to understand any puzzle, does he frown, or
wrinkle the skin beneath the lower eyelids?

(5.) When in low spirits, are the corners of the mouth
depressed, and the inner corner of the eyebrows
raised by that muscle which the French call the
" Grief muscle " ? The eyebrow in this state be-
comes slightly oblique, with a little swelling at
the inner end; and-the forehead is transversely
wrinkled in the middle part, but not across the
whole breadth, as when the eyebrows are raised
, in surprise.



(6.) When in good spirits do the eyes sparkle, with the
skin a little wrinkled round and. under them, and
with the mouth a little drawn back at the
corners ?

(7.) When a man sneers or snarls at another, is the
corner of the upper lip over the canine or eye
tooth raised on the side facing the*man whom he

(8.) Can a dogged or obstinate expression be recog-
nized, which is chiefly shown by the mouth being
firmly closed, a lowering- brow and a slight

(9.) Is contempt expressed by a slight protrusion of
the lips and by turning up the nose, and with a
slight expiration?

(10.) Is disgust shown by the lower lip being turned
down, the upper lip slightly raised, with a sud-
den expiration, something like incipient vomit-
ing, or like something spit out of the mouth?

(11.) Is extreme fear expressed in the same general
manner as with Europeans?

(12.) Is laughter ever carried to such an extreme as
to bring tears into the eyes?

(13.) When a man wishes to show that he cannot pre-
vent something being done, or cannot himself do
something, does he shrug his shoulders, turn in-
wards his elbows, extend outwards his hands and
open the palms; with the eyebrows raised?

(14.) Do the children when sulky, pout or greatly pro-
trude the lips?

(15.) Can guilty, or sly, or jealous expressions be recog-
nized? though 1 know not how these can be de-

(16.) Is the head nodded vertically in affirmation, and
shaken laterally in negation?

Observations on natives who have had little communi-
cation with Europeans would be of course the most valu-
able, though those made on any natives would be of much
interest to me. General remarks on expression are of com-
paratively little value; and memory is so deceptive that
I earnestly beg* it may not be trusted. A definite descrip-
tion of the countenance under any emotion or frame of
mind, with a statement of the circumstances under which
it occurred, would possess much value.

To these queries I have received thirty-six answers
from different observers, several of them missionaries
or protectors of the aborigines, to all of whom I am
deeply indebted for the great trouble which they have
taken, and for the valuable aid thus received. I will



INTRODUCTION.                              17

specify their names, &c., towards the close of this chap-
ter, so as not to interrupt my present remarks. The
answers relate to several of the most distinct and savage
races of man. In many instances, the circumstances
have been recorded under which each expression was
observed, and the expression itself described. In such
cases, much confidence may be placed in the answers.
When the answers have been simply yes or no, I have
always received them with caution. It follows, from
the information thus acquired, that the same state of
mind is expressed throughout the world with remark-
able uniformity; and this fact is in itself interesting
as evidence of the close similarity in bodily structure
and mental disposition of all the races of mankind.

Sixthly, and lastly, I have attended, as closely as I
could, to the expression of the several passions in some
of the commoner animals; and this I believe to be of
paramount importance, not of course for deciding how
far in man certain expressions are characteristic of
certain states of mind, but as affording the safest basis
for generalisation on the causes, or origin, of the various
movements of Expression. In observing animals, we
are not so likely to be biassed by our imagination; and
we may feel safe that their expressions are not conven-

From the reasons above assigned, namely, the fleeting
nature of some expressions (the changes in the features
being often extremely slight); our sympathy being
easily aroused when we behold any strong emotion,
and our attention thus distracted; our imagination de-
ceiving us, from knowing in a vague manner what to
expect, though certainly few of us know what the ex-
act changes in the countenance are; and lastly, even
our long familiarity with the subject,—from all these



causes combined, the observation of Expression is by
no means easy, as many persons, whom I have asked to
observe certain points, have soon discovered. Hence
it is difficult to determine, with certainty, what are the
movements of the features and of the body, which com-
monly characterize certain states of the mind. Never-
theless, some of the doubts and difficulties have, as I
hope, been cleared away by the observation of infants,
—of the insane,—of the different races of man,—of
works of art,—and lastly, of the facial muscles under
the action of galvanism, as effected by Dr. Duchenne.

But there remains the much greater difficulty of
understanding the cause or origin of the several ex-
pressions, and of judging whether any theoretical ex-
planation is trustworthy. Besides, judging as well as
we can by our reason, without the aid of any rules, which
of two or more explanations is the most satisfactory,
or are quite unsatisfactory, I see only one way of test-
ing our conclusions. This is to observe whether the
same principle by which one expression can, as it ap-
pears, be explained, is applicable in other allied cases;
and especially, whether the same general principles can
be applied with satisfactory results, both to man and
the lower animals. This latter method, I am inclined
to think, is the most serviceable of all. The difficulty
of judging of the truth of any theoretical explanation,
and of testing it by some distinct line of investigation,
is the great drawback to that interest which the study
seems well fitted to excite.

Finally, with respect to my own observations, I may
state that they were commenced in the year 1838; and
from that time to the present day, I have occasionally
attended to the subject. At the above date, I was al-
ready inclined to believe in the principle of evolution,
or of the derivation, of species from other and lower



INTRODUCTION.                            19

forms. .Consequently, when I read Sir C. BelFs great
work, his view, that man had been created with cer-
tain muscles specially adapted for the expression of
his feelings, struck me as unsatisfactory. It seemed
probable that the habit of expressing our feelings by
certain movements, though now rendered innate, had
been in some manner gradually acquired. But to dis-
cover how such habits had been acquired was perplex-
ing in no small degree. The whole subject had to be
viewed under a new aspect, and each expression de-
manded a rational explanation. This belief led me to
attempt the present work, however imperfectly it may
have been executed.

I will now give the names of the gentlemen to whom,
as I have said, I am deeply indebted for information in
regard to the expressions exhibited by various races of
man, and I will specify some of the circumstances under
which the observations were in each case made. Owing
to the great kindness and powerful influence of- Mr.
Wilson, of Hayes Place, Kent, I have received from
Australia no less than thirteen sets of answers to my
queries. This has been particularly fortunate, as the
Australian aborigines rank amongst the most distinct of
all the races of man. It will be seen that the observa-
tions have been chiefly made in the south, in the out-
lying parts of the colony of Victoria; but some excel-
lent answers have been received from the north.

Mr. Dyson Lacy has given me in detail some valu-
able observations, made several hundred miles in the
interior "of Queensland. To Mr. E. Brough Smyth,
of Melbourne, I am much indebted for observations made
by himself, and for sending me several of the following
letters, namely:—From the Eev, Mr. Hagenauer, of

20                            INTRODUCTION.

Lake Wellington, a missionary in Gippsland, Victoria,                |

who has had much experience with the natives.   From                ?

Mr. Samuel Wilson, a landowner, residing at Langere-
nong, Wimmera, Victoria. From the Eev. George Tap-
lin, superintendent of the native Industrial Settle-
ment at Port Macleay. From Mr. Archibald G. Lang,
of Coranderik, Victoria, a teacher at a school where
aborigines, old and young, are collected from all parts
of the colony. From Mr. H. B. Lane, of Belfast, Vic-                /

toria, a police magistrate and warden, whose observa-                \

tions, as I am assured, are highly trustworthy. From
Mr. Templeton Bunnett, of Echuca, whose station is on
the borders of the colony of Victoria, and who has thus
been able to observe many aborigines who have had
little intercourse with white men. He compared his
observations with those made by two other gentlemen
long resident in the neighbourhood. Also from Mr. J.
Buhner, a missionary in a remote part of Gippsland,
Victoria.                                                                                     1

I am also indebted to the distinguished botanist, Dr.                 f

Ferdinand Miiller, of Victoria, for some observations
made by himself, and for sending me others made by                 j

Mrs. Green, as well as for £ome of the foregoing letters.                   ?

In regard to the Maoris of New Zealand, the Kev.
J. W. Stack has answered only a few of my queries;
but the answers have been remarkably full, clear, and
distinct, with the circumstances recorded under which                 f

the observations were made.                                                          '

The Rajah Brooke has given me some information
with respect to the Dyaks of Borneo.

Respecting the Malays, I have been highly success-
ful; for Mr. F. Geach (to whom I was introduced by Mr.
Wallace), during his residence as a mining engineer in
the interior of Malacca, observed many natives, who had
never before associated with white men. He wrote me

INTRODUCTION.                            21


two long letters with admirable and detailed observa-
tions on their expression.    He likewise observed the
\                 Chinese immigrants in the Malay archipelago.

The well-known naturalist, H. M. Consul, Mr. Swin-
hoc, also observed for me the Chinese in their native
country; and he made inquiries from others whom he
could trust.

In India Mr. IT. Erskinc, whilst residing in his official
r                capacity in the Admodnugur District in the Bombay

I                Presidency, attended to the expression of the inhabitants,

|                 but found much difficulty in arriving at any safe con-

clusions, owing to their habitual concealment of all
emotions in the presence of Europeans. Pie also ob- _
tained information for me from Mr. West, the Jurige
in Oanara, and he consulted some intelligent nauve
gentlemen on certain points. In Calcutta Mr. J. Scott,
curator of the Botanic Gardens, carefully observed the
various tribes of men therein employed during a con-
|                 sidcrable period, and no one has sent me such full and

I                 valuable details.    The habit of accurate observation,

gained by his botanical studies, has been brought to
|                 bear on our present subject.   For Ceylon I am much

!                 indebted to the Rev. S. 0. Glenie for answers to some

of my queries.

I                       Turning to Africa, I have been unfortunate with

;                  respect to the negroes, though   Mr. Winwood Reade

r                 aided me as far as lay in his power.   It would have been

f                 comparatively easy to have obtained information in

I                  regard to the negro slavey in America; but as they have

!                  long associated with white men, such observations would

!                  have possessed little value.    In the southern parts of

|                  the continent Mrs. Barber observed   the   Kafirs and

Pingoes, and sent me many distinct answers. Mr.g J. P.
Mansel Weale also made some observations on the na-
tives, and procured for me a curious document, namely,

22                          INTRODUCTION.

the opinion, written in English, of   Christian Gaika,                  j

brother of the Chief Sandilli, on the expressions of his                  f'

fellow-countrymen.   In the northern regions of Africa

Captain Speedy, who long resided with the Abyssinians,

answered my queries partly from memory and partly

from, observations made on the son of King Theodore,

who was then under his charge.    Professor and Mrs.

Asa Gray attended to some points in the expressions of

the natives, as observed by them, whilst ascending the                  j

Nile.                                                                                            f

On the great American continent Mr. Bridges, a
catechist residing with the Fuegians, answered some
few questions about their expression, addressed to him
m^ny years ago.    In the northern half of the conti-
nent Dr. Rothrock attended to the expressions of the                  ;
wild Atnah and Espyox tribes on the ISTasse River, in
Xorth-Western America.    Mr. Washington Matthews,
Assistant-Surgeon in the United States Army, also ob-
served with special care (after having seen my queries,                   $
as printed in the ' Smithsonian Report *) some of the                     f
wildest tribes in the Western parts of the United States,
namely, the Tetons, Grosventres, Mandans, and Assina-
boines;    and his answers have proved of the highest

Lastly, besides these special sources of information, I                   \

have collected some few facts incidentally given in books
of travels.                                                                                      y

As I shall often have to refer, more especially in the                   •

latter part of this volume, to the muscles of the human                   :

face, I have had a diagram (fig. 1) copied and reduced
from Sir C. Bell's work, and two others, with more ac-
curate details (figs. 2 and 3), from Henle's well-known
^Handbueh der Systematischen Anatomie des Menschen/
The same letters refer to the same muscles in all three

INTRODUCTION.                            33

figures, but the names are given of only the more im-
portant ones to which I shall have to allude. The facial
muscles "blend much together, and,, as I am informed,
hardly appear on a dissected face so distinct as they are
here represented. Some writers consider that these
muscles consist of nineteen pairs, with one unpaired;20
but others make the number much larger, amounting
even to fifty-five, according to Moreau. They are, as is
admitted by everyone who has written on the subject,
very variable in structure; and Moreau remarks that
they are hardly alike in half-a-dozen subjects.21 They
are also variable in function. Thus the power of un-
covering- the canine tooth on one side differs much in
different persons. The power of raising the wings of
the nostrils is also, according to Dr. Piderit,22 variable
, in a remarkable degree; and other such cases could be

Finally, I must have the pleasure of expressing my
obligations to Mr. Kejlander for the trouble which he
has taken in photographing for me various expressions
and gestures. I am also indebted to Herr Kindermann,
of Hamburg, for the loan of some excellent negatives of
crying infants; and to Dr. Wallich for a charming one
of a smiling girl. I have already expressed my obliga-
tions to Dr. Duchenne for generously permitting me to
have some of his large photographs copied and reduced.
All these photographs have been printed by the Helio-
type process, and the accuracy of the copy is thus guar-
anteed. These plates are referred to by Roman numerals.

I ana also greatly indebted to Mr. T. W. Wood for

20 Mr. Partridge in Todd's * Cyclopaedia of Anatomy and
Physiology,* vol. ii. p. 227.

"21 * L,a Physionomie,' par G. Lavater, torn. iv. 1820, p.
274. On the number of the facial muscles, see vol. iv. pp.

22 * Mimilc und Physiognomik,' 1867, s. 91.

5 f,



. 1.—Diagram of the muscles of the face, from Sir C. Bell.

PIG. 2.—-Diagram from Henle.



FIG. 3.—-Diagram from Henlc.

A. Occlpito-frontalis, or frontal mus-

B. Corrugator supercilii, or corruga-
tor muscle.

C.  Orbicularis palpebrarum, or or-
bicular muscles of the eyes.

D.  Pyramidalis nasi,  or pyramidal
muscle of the nose.

E.  Lcvator labii superior-is  altpque

F. Lcvator labii proprius.

(I. Zygomatic.

It. Malaria.

I. Little zygomatic.

K. Triangularis oris, or depressor
anguli oris.

L. Qnadratus incnti.

M. nisorius, part of the Platysma

the extreme pains winch he has taken in drawing from
life the expressions of various animals. A distinguished
artist, Mr. Riviere, has had the kindness to give me two
drawings of dogs—one in a hostile and the other in a
humble and caressing frame of mind. Mr. A. May has
also given me two similar sketches of dogs. Mr. Cooper
has taken much care in cutting the blocks. Some of



the photographs and drawings, namely,, those by Mr.
May, and those by Mr. Wolf of the Cynopithecus, were
first reproduced by Mr. Cooper on wood by means of
photography, and then engraved: by this means almost
complete fidelity is ensured.


GENERAL PRINCIPLES OF EXPRESSION*.                                     /:

The   three   chief  principles  stated—The  first  principle—                              ,.'

Serviceable   actions   become   habitual    in   association

with  certain   states of the  mind,  and  are   performed                               \

whether or not at' service in each particular case—
The force of habit—Inheritance—Associated habitual
movements in man—Reflex actions—-Passage of habits
into reflex actions—Associated habitual movements in
the lower animals—Concluding' remarks.

I WILL begin by giving the three Principles, which                           *    fl

* appear to me to account for most of the expressions
and gestures involuntarily used by man and the lower
animals, under the influence of various emotions and                           \" .

sensations.1    I arrived, however, at these three Prin-                              V

ciples only at the close of my observations. They will
be discussed in the present and two following chapters
in a general manner. Fads observed both with man                           S *

and the lower animals will here be made use of;  but                            , t

the latter facts are preferable, as less likely to deceive                           v   t

us.    In the fourth and fifth chapters, I will describe                           !...

the special expressions of some of the lower animals;
and in the succeeding chapters those of man. Every-
one will thus be able to judge for himself, how far my

1 Mr. Herbert Spencer  (' Essays/ Second Series, 1863,                              ,   .

p. 138)  has drawn a clear distinction between emotions                                 ,

and sensations, the latter being " generated  in onr cor-                             >',   \

poreal framework."   He classes as Feeling's both emotions                              )'

and sensations.                                                                                                     !, '


28                         THE PRINCIPLE OF                  CHAP. I.

three principles throw light on the theory of the sub-
ject. It appears to me that so many expressions are
thus explained in a fairly satisfactory manner, that
probably all will hereafter be found to come under the
same or closely analogoiis heads. I need hardly pre-
mise that movements or changes in any part of the
body,—as the wagging of a dog's tail, the drawing back
of a horse's ears, the shrugging of a man's shoulders,
or the dilatation of the capillary vessels of the skin,—
may all equally well serve for expression. The three
Principles are as follows.

I.   The principle of serviceable associated Habits.—
Certain complex actions are of direct or indirect serv-
ice under certain states of the mind, in order to relieve
or gratify certain sensations, desires, &c.;   and when-
ever the same state of mind is induced, however feebly,
there is a tendency through the force of habit and asso-
ciation for the same movements to be performed, though
they may not then be of the least use.    Some actions
ordinarily associated through habit with certain states
of the mind may be partially repressed through the
will, and in such cases the muscles which are least under
the separate control of the will are the most liable still
to act, causing movements which we recognize as expres-
sive.   In certain other cases the checking of one habitual
movement requires other slight movements;  and these
are likewise expressive.

II.   The principle of Antithesis.—Certain states of               f
the mind lead to certain habitual actions, which are of               f
service, as under our first principle.   Now when a direct-                •*
ly opposite state of mind is induced, there is a strong and
involuntary tendency to the performance of movements

of a directly opposite nature, though these are of no               p

use; and such movements are in some cases highly ex-               [

pressive.                                                                                    f


III. The principle of actions due to the constitution
of the Nervous System, independently from the first of                         ,   ',

the Will, and independently to a certain extent of Habit.
—When the sensorium is strongly excited, nerve-force                          > f

is generated in excess, and is transmitted in certain                          \

definite directions, depending on the connection of the
nerve-cells, and partly on habit: or the supply of nerve-
force may, as it appears, be interrupted. Effects are thus
produced which we recognize as expressive. This third                           t'

principle may, for the sake of brevity, be called that of
the direct action of the nervous system.                                                   .'"

With respect to our first Principle^ it is notorious                         * i.

how powerful is the force of habit.   The most complex                         '  v

and difficult movements can in time be performed with-
out the least effort or consciousness. It is not posi-
tively known how it comes that habit is so efficient
in facilitating complex movements; but physiologists
admit2 " that the conducting power of the nervous
fibres increases with the frequency of their excitement."
This applies to the nerves of motion and sensation, as
well as to those connected with the act of thinking.
That some physical change is produced in the nerve-cells
or nerves which are habitually used can hardly be doubt-
ed, for otherwise it is impossible to understand how the
tendency to certain acquired movements is inherited.
That they are inherited we see with horses in certain
transmitted paces, such as cantering and ambling, which
are not natural to them,—in the pointing of young
pointers and the setting of young setters—in the peculiar

2 Miiller, * "Elements of Physiology,' En£. translat. vol.
ii. p. 030. See also Mr. IT. Spencer's interesting1 specula-
tions on the same subject, and on the genesis of nerves,
in his 'Principles of Biology,' vol. ii. p. 340; and in his
* Principles of Psychology,' 2nd edit. pp. 511—557.




manner of flight of certain breeds of the pigeon, &c.
We have analogous cases with mankind in the inheritance
of tricks or unusual gestures, to which we shall presently
recur. To those who admit the gradual evolution of
species, a most striking instance of the perfection with
which the most difficult consensual movements can be
transmitted, is afforded by the humming-bird Sphinx-
moth (Macroglossa) ; for this moth, shortly after its
emergence from the cocoon, as shown by the bloom on its
unruffled scales, may be seen poised stationary in the
air, with its long hair-like proboscis uncurled and
inserted into the minute orifices of flowers; and no
one, I believe, has ever seen this moth learning to
perform its difficult task, which requires such uner-
ring aim.

When there exists an inherited or instinctive tend-
ency to the performance of an action, or an inherited
taste for certain kinds of food, some degree of habit
in the individual is often or generally requisite. We
find this in the paces of the horse, and to a certain extent
in the pointing of dogs; although some young dogs point
excellently the first time they are taken out, yet they
often associate the proper inherited attitude with a
wrong odour, and even with eyesight. I have heard
it asserted that if a calf be allowed to suck its mother
only once, it is much more difficult afterwards to rear
it by hand.3 Caterpillars which have been fed on the
leaves of one kind of tree, have been known to peri six
from hunger rather than to eat the leaves of another
tree, although this afforded them their proper food,

3 A remark to much the same effect was made long ago
by Hippocrates and by the illustrious Harvey; for both
assert that a young animal forgets in the course of a few
days the art of sucking-, and cannot without some diffi-
culty again acquire it. I give these assertions on the au-
thority of Dr. Darwin, * Zoonomia,' 1794, vol. i. p. 140.

CHAP. I.    SERVICEABLE ASSOCIATED HABITS.           31                                >

"under a state of nature; 4  and so it is in. many other                          v


The power of Association is admitted by everyone.
Mr. Bain remarks, that " actions, sensations and states
oi; feeling*, occurring together or in close succession,                          - ^

icviul to g'row together, or cohere, in such a way that

|                  whoii any one of them is afterwards presented to the                            ;

(                   mind, the* others are apt to be brought up in idea."5

1 1; is so important for our purpose fully to recognize that                          • /

tie t ions  readily become associated with  other actions
and with various states of the mind., that I will give a                            - *><

good many instances., in the first place relating to man,                              .t

*     and afterwards to the lower animals.    Some of the in-

stances are of a very trilling nature, but they arc as good                          * "  '

i'or our purpose as more important habits.    It is known

to everyone how diiUeult, or even impossible it is, with-

out repeated trials, to move the limbs in certain opposed                         •"*' '

;                   (lire-ctions which have never been practised.   Analogous

reuses occur with sensations, as in the common experiment
of rolling a marble beneath, the tips of two crossed fin-                          *  '

£cirs, when it feels exactly like two marbles.   Everyone                            ,+

k                  protects himself when falling to the ground by extend-

£                  Ing his arms, and as 'Professor Alison has remarked, few

L                  can resist acting thus, when voluntarily falling on a                           ;   "

I;                  soft bed.    A man when going out of doors puts on liis                            j

j                   gloves quite unconsciously;  and this may seem an ex-                          ^

JT                tre.mdy simple operation, but he who has taught a child                          ' , .

4 See for my authorities, and for various analog-oils
facts, * The Variation of Animals ami Plants under Bo-
moHtioatioii,' 1HGH, vol. ii. p. 304.

G 'The Senses and the Intellect,' 2nd edit. 1804, p. 332.
"Prof. Huxley remarks (* Kleinentary Lessons in .Physi-
olo^y,' 5tli edit. 1872, p. 300), 4t It may be laid down as a
rule,' that, if any two mental states he called np together,
or in succession, with due frequency and vividness, the
subsequent production of the one of them will suffice to
call up the other, and that whether we desire it or not."



to put on gloves., knows that this is by no means the

When our minds are much affected, so are the move-
ments of our bodies; but here another principle be-
sides habit, namely the undirected overflow of nerve-
force, partially comes into play. Norfolk, in speaking
of Cardinal Wolsey, says—

" Some strange commotion
Is in liis brain; he bites his lip and starts;
Stops on a sudden, looks upon the ground,
Then, lays his finger on his temple:   straight,
Springs out into fast gait;   then, stops again,
Strikes his breast hard;  and anon, he easts
His eye against the moon:   in most strange postures
We have seen him set himself."—Hen. VI1L, act 3, sc. 2.

A vulgar man often scratches his head when per-
plexed in mind; and I believe that he acts thus from
habit, as if he experienced a slightly uncomfortable
bodily sensation, namely, the itching of his head, to
which he is particularly liable, and which he thus re-
lieves. Another man rubs his eyes when perplexed, or
gives a little cough when embarrassed, acting in either
case as if he felt a slightly uncomfortable sensation in
his eyes or windpipe.6

Prom the continued use of the eyes, these organs
are especially liable to be acted on through association
under various states of the rnind, although there is mani-
festly nothing to be seen. A man, as Gratiolet remarks,
who vehemently rejects a proposition, will almost cer-
tainly shut his eyes or turn away his face; but if he
accepts the proposition., he will nod his head in affirma-
tion and open his eyes widely. The man acts in this

c Gratiolet (* De la Physionomie,' p. 324), in. his discus-
sion on this subject, gives many analogous instances.
See p. 42, on the opening- and shutting of the eyes. Engcxl
is quoted (p. 323) on the changed paces of a man, as his
thoughts change.


latter case as if he clearly saw the thing, and in the
former case as if he did not or would not see it. I
have noticed that persons in describing a horrid sight
often shut their eyes momentarily arid firmly, or shake
their heads, as if not to see or to drive away some-
thing disagreeable; and I have caught myself, when
thinking in the dark of a horrid spectacle, closing
my eyes firmly. In looking suddenly at any object,
or in looking all around, everyone raises his eyebrows,
so that the eyes may be quickly and widely opened;
and Duchenne remarks that 7 a person in trying to re-
member something often raises his eyebrows, as if to
see it. A Hindoo gentleman made exactly the same
remark to Mr. Erskine in regard to his countrymen.
I noticed a young lady earnestly trying to recollect a
painter's name, and she first looked to one corner of
the ceiling and then to the opposite corner, arching
the one eyebrow on that side; although, of course, there
was nothing to be seen there.

In most of the foregoing cases, we can understand
how the associated movements were acquired through
habit; but with some individuals, certain strange gestures
or tricks have arisen in association with certain states of
the mind, owing to wholly inexplicable causes, and are
undoubtedly inherited. I have elsewhere given one
instance from my own observation of an extraordinary
and complex gesture, associated with pleasurable feel-
ings, which was transmitted from a father to his
daughter, as well as some other analogous facts.8

7 ' Mecanisme de la Physionomie Hrimaine,' 1802, p. 17.

8  t The Variation of Animals and Plants under Domesti-
cation, ' vol. ii. p. (>.    The inheritance of habitual gestures
is so important for tis, that I gladly avail myself of Mr.
F. Qalton's permission to give in his own words the follow-
ing remarkable case:- ...... "The following account of a habit

occurring in individuals of three consecutive generations

''                                34                         THE PRINCIPLE OF                  CHAP. I.

1 If

•I*                             Another curious instance of an odd inherited move-

11:                             ment, associated with the wish to obtain an object, will

be given in the course of this volume.

*}                                   There are other actions which are commonly per-

v                             formed under certain circumstances^ independently of

habit, and which seem to be due to imitation or some

sort of sympathy.    Thus persons cutting anything with

is of peculiar interest, because it occurs only during sound
sleep, and therefore cannot be due to imitation, but must
be altogether natural. The particulars are perfectly trust-
worthy, for I have enquired fully into them, and speak
from abundant and independent evidence. A gentleman
of considerable position was found by his wife to have the
curious trick, when he lay fast asleep ou his back in bed,
of raising his right arm slowly in front of his face, up to
his forehead, and then dropping it with a jerk, so that
the wrist fell heavily on the bridge of his nose. The trick
did not occur every nigiit, but occasionally, and was in-

sr                                dependent "of any ascertained cause.    Sometimes  it was

' repeated incessantly for  an hour or more.    The  gentle-

;                                   man's nose was prominent, and its bridge often became

, ' '                               sore from the blows which it received.    At one time an

awkward sore was produced,  that was long in healing,

1   '                                on account of the recurrence, night after night,  of the

*                               blows which first caused it.    His wife had to remove the

button from the wrist of his night-gown as it made severe

,                                   scratches, and some means were attempted of tying his


" Many years after his death, his son married a Incly
who had never heard of the family incident. She, how-
ever, observed precisely the same peculiarity in her hus-
band; but his nose, from not being particularly promi-
nent, has never as yet suffered from the blows. The trick
does not occur when he is half-asleep, as, for example,

,'                                   when dozing in his arm-chair, but the moment he is fast

j                                   asleep it is apt to begin.    It is, as with his father, inter-

mittent; sometimes ceasing for many nights, and some-
times almost incessant during a part of every night. It
is performed, as it was by his father, with his right hand.

" One of his children, a girl, has inherited  the same

' •                                  trick.   She performs it, likewise, with the right hand, but

l "                                 in a slightly modified form;   for, after raising the arm,

;i    >„                                   she does not allow the wrist to drop upon the bridge of the

',,                                     nose, but the palm of the half-closed hand falls over and

I   '>                                  down the nose, striking- it rather rapidly.   It is also very in-

iv *»                                 termittent with this child, not occurring for periods of some

» v                                  months, but sometimes occurring almost incessantly."


9 Prof. Huxley remarks (' Elementary Physiology,' 5th
edit. p. 305) that reflex actions proper to the spinal cord
are natural; hut, by the help of the brain, that is through
habit, an infinity of artificial reflex actions may be ac-
quired. Virchow admits ('Samxnlung1 wissonschaft. Vor-
trJi^e,1 &c., " Ueber das Iliickenmarlv,1' 1871, ss. 24, 31)
that some refkvx actions can hardly be distinguished from
instincts; and, of the latter, it may be added, some cannot
be distinguished from inherited habits.


a pair of scissors may be seen to move their jaws simul-                           ** \

taneously with the blades of the scissors.     Children                           , , -

learning to write often twist   about   their tongues as                             *

their fingers move, in a ridiculous fashion.    When a                            ,    *

public singer suddenly becomes a little hoarse, many
of those present may be heard, as I have been assured                              .

by a gentleman   on whom  I   can   rely, to clear their                          "   (,'

throats; but here habit probably comes into play, as we                           ' "; ;

clear  our  own  throats  under  similar  circumstances.                             %*

I have also been told that at leaping matches, as the                           t   [ •

performer makes his spring, many of the spectators,                           ^

generally men. and boys, .move their feet; but here
again habit probably conies into play, for it is very
doubtful whether women would thus act.

Reflex aotions.—Reflex actions, in the strict sense of
the term, are due to   the   excitement of a peripheral

nerve, which transmits its inilucncc to certain nerve-                           ' ' * *

cells, and these in their turn excite certain, muscles or                              ^    »

glands into action; and all this may take place without                              »    *

any sensation or consciousness on our part, though often                             '/»*

thus accompanied.    As many reflex actions are highly                               * »*

expressive, the subject must here bo noticed at some                           • (    '*

little length.     We   shall   also   see that some of thorn                             / ^ <»

graduate into, and can hardly be distinguished from                             |    f'

actions which have arisen through habit.1*    Coughing                             #,, **•

and sneezing are familiar instances of reflex actions.                              ,   ^

With infants the first act of respiration is often a sneeze,                               , g

although this requires the co-ordinated movement of                              > < t

36                         THE PJEttNCIPLE OP                 CHAP. I.

numerous muscles. Eespiration is partly voluntary, bub
mainly reflex., and is performed in the most natural and
best manner without the interference of the will. A vast
number of complex movements are reflex. As good an
instance as can be given is the often-quoted one of a
decapitated frog, which cannot of course feel., and cannot
consciously perform, any movement. Yet if a drop of
acid be placed on the lower surface of the thigh of a
frog in this state, it will rub off the drop with the upper
surface of the foot of the same leg. If this foot be cut
off, it cannot thus act. " After some fruitless efforts.,
therefore, it gives up trying in that way, seems restless,
as though, says Pfliiger, it was seeking some other way,
and at last it makes use of the foot of the other leg and
succeeds in rubbing off the acid. Notably we have here
not merely contractions of muscles, but combined and
harmonized contractions in due sequence for a special
purpose. These are actions that have all the appear-
ance of being guided by intelligence and instigated by
will in an animal, the recognized organ of whose intelli-
gence and will has been removed." 10

We see the difference between reflex and voluntary
movements in very young children not being able to
perform, as I arn informed by Sir Henry Holland, cer-
tain acts somewhat analogous to those of sneezing and
coughing, namely, in their not being able to blow their
noses (i. e. to compress the nose and blow violently
through the passage), and in their not being able to clear
their throats of phlegm. They have to learn to perform
these acts, yet they are performed by us, when a little
older, almost as easily as reflex actions. Sneezing and
coughing, however, can be controlled by the will only
partially or not at all; whilst the clearing the throat

10 Dr. Maudsley, « Body and Mind,' 1870, p. 8.

CHAP. I.    SERVICEABLE ASSOCIATED HABITS.          37                              \  ^

'i •'

and blowing the nose are completely under our com-                              ;v;   \

mand.                                                                                                                       \   »

When we are conscious of the presence of an irritating

particle in our nostrils or windpipe—that is, when the                                   » <•

same sensory nerve-cells are excited, as in the case of
sneezing and coughing—we can voluntarily expel the
particle by forcibly driving air through these passages;                                 ;* •

hut we cannot do this with nearly the same force,                              * •; "

rapidity, and precision, as by a reflex action.    In this                                 ^   \

latter case  the  sensory nerve-cells  apparently  excite                                 ;   t

the motor nerve-cells without any waste of power by
first communicating with the cerebral hemispheres—the                                  , *

seat of   our consciousness and volition.     In all cases                                  '•

i   ^

there seems to exist a profound antagonism between the                                  , *..;

same movements, as directed by the will and by a reflex                                 '   -

stimulant, in the force with which they are performed

and in the facility with which they are excited.     As                                   ;';

Claude Bernard asserts, " I7influen.ce du cerveau tend

done & entraver les mouvements reflexes, a limiter leur

force et leur dtcndue." n

The conscious wish to perform a reflex action some-
times stops or interrupts its performance, though the
proper sensory nerves may be   stimulated.     For in-
stance, many years ago I laid a small wager with a dozen                                     <
young men that they would not sneeze if  they took                             !, *
snuff, although they all declared that they invariably                                     7-
did so;   accordingly they all took a pinch, but from
wishing much to succeed, not one sneezed, though their                             ] * •"
eyes watered, and all, without exception, had to pay                           , '. I
me the wager.    Sir II. Holland remarks12 that atten-                             '   *
tion paid to the act of swallowing interferes with the                             [   I
proper movements; from which it probably follows,                             !   '*

11 See tlie very interesting1 discussion on the whole sub-
ject by Claude Bernard, * Tissus Vivants,' 1866, p. 353-356.
13 'Chapters on Mental Physiology/ 1858, p. 85.

38                         THE PRINCIPLE OF                 CHAP. I.

at least in part, that some persons find it so difficult to
swallow a pill.

Another familiar instance of a reflex action is the
involuntary closing of the eyelids when the surface of
the eye is touched. A similar winking movement is
caused when a blow is directed towards the face; but
this is an habitual and not a strictly rellex action, as
the stimulus is conveyed through the mind and not by
the excitement of a peripheral nerve. The whole body
and head are generally at the same time drawn suddenly
backwards. These latter movements, however, can be
prevented, if the danger does not appear to the imagi-
nation imminent; but our reason telling us that there
is no danger does not suffice. I may mention a trilling
fact, illustrating this point, and which at the time
amused me. I put my face close to the thick glass-
plate in front of a puff-adder in the Zoological Gardens,
with the firm determination of not starting back if the
snake struck at me; but, as soon as the blow was struck,
my resolution went for- nothing, and I jumped a yard or
two backwards with astonishing rapidity. My will and
reason were powerless against the imagination of a
clanger which had never been experienced.

The violence of a start seems to depend partly on the
vividness of the imagination, and partly on the con-
dition, either habitual or temporary, of the nervous
system. He who will attend to the starting of his horse,
when tired and fresh, will perceive how perfect is the
gradation from a mere glance at some unexpected ob-
ject, with a momentary doubt whether it is dangerous,             I
to a jump so rapid and violent, that the animal probably             |
could not voluntarily whirl round in so rapid a man-             [
ner. The nervous system of a fresh and highly-fed i
horse sends its order to the motory system so quickly, f
that no time is allowed for him to consider whether ']


or not the danger is real. After one violent start, when
he is excited and the blood flows freely through his
brain, he is very apt to start again; and so it is, as I have
noticed, with young infants.

A start from a sudden noise, when the stimulus is
conveyed through the auditory nerves, is always accom-
panied in grown-up persons by the winking of the eye-
lids.13 I observed, however, that though my infants
started at sudden sounds, when under a fortnight old,
they certainly did not always wink their eyes, and I be-
lieve never did so. The start of an older infant appar-
ently represents a vague catching hold of something to
prevent falling. I shook a pasteboard box close before
the eyes of one of my infants, when 114: days old, and
it did not in the least wink; but when I put a few
comfits into the box, holding it in the same position as
before, and rattled them, the child blinked its eyes
violently every time, and started a little. It was ob-
viously impossible that a carefully-guarded infant could
have learnt by experience that a rattling sound near its
eyes indicated danger to them. But such experience
will have been slowly gained at a later age during a
long series of generations; and from what we know
of inheritance, there is nothing, improbable in the
transmission of a habit to the offspring at an earlier
age than that at which it was first acquired by the

From the foregoing remarks it seerns probable that
some actions, which were at first performed consciously,
have become through habit and association converted
into reflex actions, and are now so firmly fixed and in-
herited, that they are performed, even when not of the

18 Miiller remarks (' Elements of Physiology,' Engr. tr.
vol. ii. p. 1311) on starting- being- always accompanied
by the closure of the eyelids.




least use/4 as often as the same causes arise, which
originally excited them in us through the volition. In
such cases the sensory nerve-cells excite the motor cells,
without first communicating with those cells on which
our consciousness and volition depend. It is probable
that sneezing and coughing were originally acquired by
the habit of expelling, as violently as possible, any irri-
tating particle from the sensitive air-passages. As far
as time is concerned, there has been more than enough
for these habits to have become innate or converted into
reflex actions; for they are common to most or all. of the
higher quadrupeds, and must therefore have been first
acquired at a very remote period. Why the act of clear-
ing the throat is not a reflex action, and has to be learnt
by our children, I cannot pretend to say; but we can
see why blowing the nose on a handkerchief has to be

It is scarcely credible that the movements of a head-
less frog, when it wipes off a drop of acid or other object
from its thigh, and which movements are so well co-
ordinated for a special purpose, were not at first per-
formed voluntarily, being afterwards rendered easy
through long-continued habit so as at last to be per-
formed unconsciously, or independently of the cerebral

So again it appears probable that starting was
originally acquired by the habit of jumping away as
quickly as possible from danger, whenever any of our
senses gave us warning. Starting, as we have seen, is
accompanied by the blinking of the eyelids so as to
protect the eyes, the most tender and sensitive organs

14 Dr. Maudsley remarks (' Body and Mind,' p. 10) that
"reflex movements which commonly effect a useful end
may, under the changed circumstances of disease, do great
mischief, becoming1 even the occasion of violent suffering
and of a most painful death."


of the body; and it is, I believe; always accompanied
by a sudden and forcible inspiration, which is the
natural preparation for any violent effort. But when
a man or horse starts, his heart beats wildly against
his ribs, and here it may Ibe truly said we have an organ
which has never been under the control of the will,
partaking in the general reflex movements of the body.
To this point, however, I shall return in a future

The contraction of the iris, when the retina is atimu-
lated by a bright light, is another instance of a move-
ment, which it appears cannot possibly have been at
first voluntarily performed and then fixed by habit;
for the iris is not known to be under the conscious
control of the will in any animal. In such eases some
explanation, quite distinct from habit, will have to be
discovered. The radiation of nerve-force from strongly-
excited nerve-cells to other connected cells, as in the
case of a bright light on the retina causing a sneeze, may
perhaps aid us in understanding how sonic reflex actions
originated. A radiation of nerve-force of this kind, if
it caused a movement tending to lessen the primary irri-
tation, as in the case of the contraction of the iris pre-
venting too much light from falling on the retina, might
afterwards have been taken advantage of and modified
for tliis special purpose.

It further deserves notice that reflex actions arc in
all probability liable to slight variations, as are all
corporeal structures and instincts; and any variations
which were beneficial and of sufficient importance, would
tend to be preserved and inherited. Thus reflex actions,
when once gained for one purpose, might afterwards
be modified independently of the will or habit, so as to
serve for some distinct purpose. Such cases would be
parallel with those which, as we have every reason to
4                   <

4:2                         THE PRINCIPLE OF                 CHAP. I.

believe, have occurred with many instincts; for al-
though some instincts have been developed simply
through long-continued and inherited habit, other
highly complex ones have been developed through the
preservation of variations of pre-existing instincts—that

p'                        is, through natural selection.

'                              I have discussed at some little length, though as I

am well aware, in a very imperfect manner, the acquire-
ment of reflex actions, because they are often brought
into play in connection with movements expressive of
our emotions; and it was necessary to show that at least

<                             some of them might have been first acquired through
the will in order to satisfy a desire, or to relieve a dis-
agreeable sensation.

Associated habitual movements in the lower animals.

*                        —I have already given in the case of Man several in-

stances of movements associated with various states
of the mind or body, which are now purposeless, but
which were originally of use, and are still of use under
certain circumstances. As this subject is very irnpor-

'5                        tant for us, I will here give a considerable number of

analogous facts, with reference to animals; although
many of them are of a very trifling nature. My ob-
ject is to show that certain movements were originally

< „                         performed for a definite end, and that, under nearly

the same circumstances, they are still pertinaciously per-
formed through habit when not of the least use. That
the tendency in most of the following cases is inherited,
we may infer from such actions being performed in the
same manner by all'the individuals, young and old, of

I >„                          the same species.   We shall also see that they are excited

; f                         by the most diversified, often circuitous, and sometimes

*'.                        mistaken associations.

; i                               Dogs, when they wish to go to sleep on a carpet or


other hard surface, generally turn round and round and
scratch the ground with their fore-paws in a senseless
manner, as if they intended to trample down the grass
and scoop out a hollow, as no doubt their wild parents
did, when they lived on open grassy plains or in the
woods. Jackals, fennecs, and other allied animals in
the Zoological Gardens, treat their straw in this man-
ner; but it is a rather odd circumstance that the keepers,
after observing for some months, have never seen the
wolves thus behave. A semi-idiotic dog—and an ani-
mal in this condition would be particularly liable to
follow a senseless habit—was observed by a friend to
turn completely round on a carpet thirteen times before
going to sleep.

Many carnivorous animals, as they crawl towards
their prey and prepare to rush or spring on it, lower their
heads and crouch, partly, as it would appear, to hide
themselves, and partly to get ready for their rush; and
this* habit in an exaggerated form has become heredi-
tary in our pointers and setters. Now I have noticed
scores of times that when two strange dogs meet on an
open road, the one which first sees the other, though
at the distance of one or
two hundred yards, after
the first glance always
lowers its head, generally
crouches a little, or even
lies down; that is, he
takes the proper attitude
for concealing himself and

for     making     a    rush     Or   FIG. 4.—Small dog watching a cat on a,

spring, although the road
is quite open and the dis-
tance great.    Again, dogs of all kinds when intently
watching and slowly approaching their prey, frequently

table.   Prom a photograph taken
by Mr. Rejlander.





keep one of their fore-legs donbled up for a long time,
ready for the next cautious step; and this is eminently
characteristic of the pointer. But from habit they be-
have in exactly the same manner whenever their atten-
tion is aroused (fig. 4). I have seen a dog at the foot of
a high wall, listening attentively to a sound on the oppo-
site side, with one leg doubled up; and in this case there
could have been no intention of making a cautious ap-

Dogs after voiding their excrement often make with
all four feet a few scratches backwards, even on a bare
stone pavement, as if for the purpose of covering up
their excrement with earth, in nearly the same manner
as do cats. Wolves and jackals behave in the Zoo-
logical Gardens in exactly the same manner, yet, as I
am assured by the keepers, neither wolves, jackals, nor
foxes, when they have the means of doing so, ever cover
up their excrement, any more than clo dogs. All these
animals, however, bury superfluous food. Hence, if we
rightly understand the meaning of the above cat-like
habit, of which there can be little doubt, we have a
purposeless remnant of an habitual movement, which
was originally followed by some remote progenitor of
the dog-genus for a definite purpose, and which has
been retained for a prodigious length of time.

Dogs and jackals15 take much pleasure in rolling
and rubbing their necks and backs on carrion. The
odour seems delightful to them, though dogs at least
do not eat carrion. Mr. Bartlett has observed wolves
for me, and has given them carrion, but has never seen
them roll on it. I have heard it remarked, and I be-
lieve it to be true, that the larger dogs, which are prob-
ably descended from wolves, do not so often roll in

15 See Mr. ~F. H. Salvin's account of a tame jackal in
* Land and Water,' October, 1869.


carrion as do smaller dogs, which are probably descended
from jackals. When a piece of brown biscuit is offered
to a terrier of mine and she is not hungry (and I have
heard of similar instances), she first tosses it about and
worries it, as if it were a rat or other prey; she then
repeatedly rolls on it precisely as if it were a piece of
carrion, and at last eats it. It would appear that an
imaginary relish has to be given to the distasteful
morsel; and to effect this the dog acts in his habitual
manner, as if the biscuit was a live animal or smelt
like carrion, though he knows better than we do that
this is not the case. I have seen this same terrier
act in the same manner after killing a little bird or

Dogs scratch themselves by a rapid movement of one
of their hind-feet; and when their backs are rubbed
with a stick, so strong is the habit, that they cannot
help rapidly scratching the air or the ground in a use-
less and ludicrous manner. The terrier just alluded to,
when thus scratched with a stick, will sometimes show
her delight by another habitual movement, namely, by
licking the air as if it were my hand.

Horses scratch themselves by nibbling those parts of
their bodies which they can reach with their teeth;
but more commonly one horse shows another where he
wants to be scratched, and they then nibble each other.
A friend whose attention I had called to the subject,
observed that when he rubbed his horse's neck, the
animal protruded his head, uncovered his teeth, and
moved his jaws, exactly as if nibbling another horse's
neck, for he could never hav-e nibbled his own neck. If
a horse is much tickled, as when curry-combed, his wish
to bite something becomes so intolerably strong, that he
will clatter his teeth together, and though not vicious,
bite his groom. At the same time from habit he closely




depresses Ms ears, so as to protect them from being-
bitten, as if he were fighting with another horse.

A horse when eager to start on a journey makes the
nearest approach which he can to the habitual move-
ment of progression by pawing the ground. Now when
horses in their stalls are about to be fed and are eager
for their corn, they paw the pavement or the straw.
Two of my horses thus behave when they see or hear
the corn given to their neighbours. But here we have
what may almost be called a true expression, as pawing
the ground is universally recognized as a sign of eager-

Cats cover up their excrements of both kinds with
earth; and my grandfather17 saw a kitten scraping
ashes over a spoonful of pure water spilt on the hearth;
so that here an habitual or instinctive action was falsely
excited, not by a previous act or by odour, but by eye-
sight. It is well known that cats dislike wetting their
feet, owing, it is probable, to their having aboriginally in-
habited the dry country of Egypt; and when they wet
their feet they shake them violently. My daughter
poured some water into a glass close to the head of a
kitten; and it immediately shook its feet in the usual
manner; so that here we have an habitual movement
falsely excited by an associated sound instead of by the
sense of touch.

Kittens, puppies, young pigs and probably many
other young animals, alternately push with their fore-
feet against the mammary glands of their mothers, to
. excite a freer secretion of milk, or to make it flow. Now
it is very common with young cats, and not at all rare
with old cats of the common and Persian breeds (be-

10 Dr. Darwin, ' Zoonomia,' 1794, vol. i. p. 160. I find that
the fact of cats protruding their feet when pleased is also
noticed (p. 151) in this work.


lieved by some naturalists to be specifically extinct),
when comfortably lying on a warm shawl or other soft
substance, to pound it quietly and alternately with their
fore-feet; their toes being spread out and claws slightly
protruded, precisely as when sucking their mother.
That it is the same movement is clearly shown by their
often at the same time taking a bit of the shawl into
their mouths and sucking it; generally closing their
eyes and purring from delight. This curious move-
ment is commonly excited only in association with the
sensation of a warm soft surface; but I have seen an
old cat, when pleased by having its back scratched,
pounding the air with its feet in the same manner; so
that this action has almost become the expression of a
pleasurable sensation.

Having referred to the act of sucking, I may add
that this complex movement, as well as the alternate
protrusion of the fore-feet, are reflex actions; for they
are performed if a finger moistened with milk is placed
in the mouth of a puppy, the front part of whose brain
has been removed.17 It has recently been stated in
France, that the action of sucking is excited solely
through the sense of smell, so that if the olfactory nerves
of a puppy are destroyed, it never sucks. In like man-
ner the wonderful power which a chicken possesses only
a few hours after being hatched, of picking up small
particles of food, seems to be started into action through
the sense of hearing; for with chickens hatched by arti-
ficial heat, a good observer found that "making a noise
•with the finger-nail against a board, in imitation of
the hen-mother, first taught them to peck at their
meat." 18

17  Carpenter,   ' Principles   of  Comparative  Physiology,'
1854, p. 690, and Miiller's * Elements of Physiology,' Bug.
translat. vol. ii. p. 936.

18  Mowbray on ' Poultry/ 6th edit. 1830, p. 54.




I will give only one other instance of an habitual
and purposeless movement. The Sheldrake (Tadornd)
feeds on the sands left uncovered by the tide, and when
a worm-east is discovered, " it begins patting the ground
with its feet, dancing as it were, over the hole; " and this
makes the worm come to the surface. Now Mr. St. John
says, that when his tame Sheldrakes " came to ask for
food, they patted the ground in an impatient and rapid
manner." 10 This therefore may almost be considered
as their expression of hunger. Mr. Bartlett informs
me that the Flamingo and the Kagu (Rhinochetus
jubatus) when anxious to be fed, beat the ground with
their feet in the same odd manner. So again King-
fishers, when they catch a fish, always beat it until it is
killed; and in the Zoological Gardens they always beat
the raw meat, with, which they are sometimes fed, before
devouring it.

We have now, I think, sufficiently shown the truth
of our first Principle, namely, that when any sensation,
desire, dislike, &c., has led during a long series of gen-
erations to some voluntary movement, then a tendency
to the performance of a similar movement will almost
certainly be excited, whenever the same, or any anal-
ogous or associated sensation &c., although very weak,
is experienced; notwithstanding that the movement in
tins case may not be of the least use. Such habitual
movements are often, or generally inherited; and they
then differ but little from reflex actions. When we treat
of the special expressions of man, the latter part of our
first Principle, as given at the commencement of this
chapter, will be seen to hold good; namely, that when
movements, associated through habit with certain states

10 See the account given by this excellent observer in
' Wild Sports of the Highlands,' 1846, p. 142,


of the mind, are partially repressed by the will, the
strictly involuntary muscles, as well as those which are
least under the separate control of the will, are liable
still to act; and their action is often highly expressive.
Conversely, when the will is temporarily or permanently
weakened, the voluntary muscles fail before the involun-
tary. It is a fact familiar to pathologists, as Sir C. Bell
remarks/0 " that when debility arises from affection of
the brain, the influence is greatest on those muscles which
are, in their natural condition, most under the command
of the will."" We shall, also, in our future chapters, con-
sider another proposition included in our first Principle;
namely, that the checking of one habitual movement
sometimes requires other slight movements; these latter
serving as a means of expression.

20 * Philosophical Translations,' 1823, p. 182.



The Principle of Antithesis—Instances in the dog and cat
—Origin of the principle—Conventional signs—The
principle of antithesis has not arisen from opposite
actions being consciously performed under opposite im-

WE will now consider our second Principle, that of
Antithesis. Certain states of the mind lead, as we have
seen in the last chapter, to certain habitual movements
which were primarily, or may still be, of service; and
we shall find that when a directly opposite state of mind
is induced, there is a strong and involuntary tendency
to the performance of movements of a directly opposite
nature, though these have never been of any service.
A few striking instances of antithesis will be given,
when we treat of the special expressions of man; but
as, in these cases, we are particularly liable to confound
conventional or artificial gestures and expressions with
those which are innate or universal, and which alone
deserve to rank as true expressions, I will in the present
chapter almost confine myself to the lower animals.

When a dog approaches a strange dog or man in a
savage or hostile frame of mind he walks upright and
very stiffly; his head is slightly raised, or not much
lowered; the tail is held erect and quite rigid; the hairs
bristle, especially along the neck and back; the pricked



ears are directed forwards, and  the eyes have a fixed
stare: (see figs. 5 and 7).   These actions, as will hereafter

be explained, follow from the dog's intention to attack                               '| ,f

his enemy, and are thus to a large extent intelligible.                             ill I

As he prepares to spring with  a  savage growl on his                               I  V

enemy, the canine teeth are uncovered, and the ears are                               'f, ^

pressed close backwards on the head;   but with these                            ;  if *

latter actions, we are not here concerned.   Let us now                            '   £ i

suppose that the dog suddenly discovers that the man he                               ^

is approaching., is not a stranger, but his master; and lot                            t   */'. 2,

it be observed how completely and instantaneously his                            *'  T 4

whole   bearing is reversed.     Instead  of walking up-                               J yp

right, the body sinks downwards or even crouches, and                                \  "?

is thrown into licxuous movements;  his tail, instead of                           %   ^

being held stiff and upright, is lowered and wagged from                                $,

side to side; his hair instantly becomes smooth; his                                r

ears are depressed and drawn backwards, but not closely                               fr '/

to the head;  and his lips hang loosely.   From the draw-                            <   ^f -

ing back of the ears, the eyelids become elongated, and                             r   ?, V

the eyes no longer appear round and staring.   It should                                ,,   $

be added that the animal is at such times in an excited                                ^ i

condition from joy;  and nerve-force will be generated                                 ?t^*
in excess, which naturally leads to action of some kind.

Not one of the above movements, so clearly expressive                               ^f

of affection, are of the least direct service to the animal.                                 •<**£
They are explicable, as far as I. can see, solely from being

in complete opposition or antithesis to the attitude and                           ^   ;I ',

movements which, from intelligible causes, are assumed                               -£ ^
when a dbg intends to fight, and which consequently

are expressive of anger.    I request the reader to look                            • '
at the four accompanying sketches, which have been

given in order to recall vividly the appearance of a dog                               If   !,
under these two states of mind.   It is, however, not a
little difficult to represent affection in a dog, whilst ca-
ressing his master and wagging his tail, as the essence of






FIG. 5.—Dog approaching another dog with hostile intentions.   By Mr, Riviere.










G, 8.—The same caressing his master.   By Mr. A, May.



the expression lies in the continuous flexuous move-

We will now turn to the cat. When this animal is
threatened by a dog, it arches its back in a surprising
manner, erects its hair,, opens its mouth and spits.
"But we are not here concerned with this well-known
attitude, expressive of -terror combined with anger;
we are concerned only with that of rage or anger.
This is not often seen, but may be observed when two
cats are fighting together; and I have seen it well ex-
hibited by a savage cat whilst plagued by a boy. The
attitude is almost exactly the same as that of a tiger
disturbed and growling over its food, which every one
must have beheld in menageries. The animal assumes
a crouching position, with the body extended; and the
whole tail, or the tip alone, is lashed or curled from side
to side. The hair is not in the least erect. Thus far,
the attitude and movements are nearly the same as when
the animal is prepared to spring on its prey, and when,
no doubt, it feels savage. But when preparing to fight,
there is this difference, that the ears are closely pressed
backwards; the mouth is partially opened, showing the
teeth; the fore feet are occasionally struck out with
protruded claws; and the animal occasionally utters a
fierce growl. (See figs. 9 and 10.) All, or almost all,
these actions naturally follow (as hereafter to be ex-
plained), from the cat's manner and intention of attack-
ing its enemy.

Let us now look at a cat in a directly opposite frame
of mind, whilst feeling affectionate and caressing her
master; and mark how opposite is her attitude in every
respect. She now stands upright with her back slightly
arched, which makes the hair appear rather rough, but
it does not bristle; her tail, instead of being extended
and lashed from side to side, is held quite stiff and per-


pendieularly upwards; her ears are erect and pointed;
lier mouth is closed; and she rubs against her master
with a purr instead of a growl. Let it further
be observed how widely different is the whole bear-
ing of an affectionate cat from that of a dog, when with
his body crouching and flexuous, his tail lowered and
wagging, and ears depressed, he caresses his master.
This contrast in the attitudes and movements of these
two carnivorous animals, under the same pleased and
affectionate frame of mind, can be explained, as it
appears to me, solely by their movements standing in
complete antithesis to those which are naturally as-
sumed, when these animals feel savage and are pre-
pared either to fight or to seize their prey.

In these cases of the dog and cat, there is every
reason to believe that the gestures both of hostility and
affection are innate or inherited; for they are almost
identically the same in the different races of the spe-
cies, and in all the individuals of the same race, both
young and old.

I will here give one other instance of antithesis in ex-
pression. I formerly possessed a large dog, who, like
every other dog, was much pleased to go out walking.
He showed his pleasure by trotting gravely before me
with high steps, head much raised, moderately erected
ears, and tail carried aloft but not stiffly. Not far from
my house a path branches off to the right, leading to
the hot-house, which I used often to visit for a few
moments, to look at my experimental plants. This was
always a great disappointment to the dog, as he did not
know whether I should continue my walk; and the in-
stantaneous and complete change of expression which
came over him, as soon as my body swerved in the least
towards the path (and I sometimes tried this as an
experiment) was laughable. His look of dejection was






FIG. 10.—-Cat in an affectionate frame of mind, l>y Mr. Wood.




known to every member of the family, and was called
his hot-house face. This consisted in the head drooping
much, the whole body sinking a little and remaining
motionless; the ears and tail falling suddenly down,
but the tail was by no means wagged. "With the fall-
ing of the ears and of his great chaps, the eyes became
much changed in appearance, and I fancied that they
looked less bright. His aspect was that of piteous,
hopeless dejection; and it was, as I have said, laugh-
able, as the cause was so slight. Every detail in his
attitude was in complete opposition to his former joy-
ful yet dignified bearing; and can be explained, as it
appears to me, in no other way, except through the
principle of antithesis. Had not the change been so
instantaneous, I should have attributed it to his lowered
spirits affecting, as in the case of man, the nervous sys-
tem and circulation, and consequently the tone of his
whole muscular frame; and this may have been in part
the cause.

We will now consider how the principle of antithesis
in expression has arisen. With social animals, the power
of intercommunication between the members of the
si*me community,—and with other species, between the
opposite sexes, as well as between the young and the
old,—is of the highest importance to them. This is
generally effected by means of the voice, but it is cer-
tain that gestures and expressions are to a certain ex-
tent mutually intelligible. Man not only uses inar-
ticulate cries, gestures, and expressions, but has in-
vented articulate language; if, indeed, the word in-
vented can be applied to a process, completed by in-
numerable steps, half-consciously made. Any one who
has watched nxonkeys will not doubt that they perfectly
understand each other's gestures and expression, and



to a large extent, as Eengger asserts/ those of man.
.An animal when going to attack another, or when afraid
of another, often makes itself appear terrible, by erect-
ing its hair, thus increasing the apparent bulk of its
body, by showing its teeth, or brandishing its horns,
or by uttering fierce sounds.

As the power of intercommunication is certainly of
high service to many animals, there is no a priori im-
probability in the supposition, that gestures manifestly
of an opposite nature to those by which certain feelings
are already expressed, should at first have been volun-
tarily employed under the influence of an opposite state
of feeling. The fact of the gestures being now innate,
would be no valid objection to the belief that they
were at first intentional; for if practised during many
generations, they would probably at last be inherited.
.Nevertheless it is more than doubtful, as we shall imme- -
diately see, whether any of the cases which come under
our present head of antithesis, have thus originated.

With conventional signs which are not innate, such
as those used by the deaf and dumb and by.savages,
the principle of opposition or antithesis has been par-
tially brought into play. The Cistercian monks thought
it sinful to speak, and as they could not avoid holding
some communication, they invented a gesture language,
in which the principle of opposition seems to have been
employed.2 Dr. Scott, of the Exeter Deaf and Dumb
Institution, writes to me that "opposites are greatly
used in teaching the deaf and dumb, who have a lively
sense of them." Nevertheless I have been surprised

1 * JSTaturgeschichte der Saugethiere von Paraguay,' 1830,
-s. 55.

2  Mr. Tylor gives an account of the Cistercian gesture-
language in  his * Early History of Mankind'   (2nd edit.
1870, p. 40), and makes some remarks on the principle of
opposition in gestures.


how few unequivocal instances can be adduced. This
depends partly on all the signs having commonly had
some natural origin; and partly on the practice of the
deaf and dumb and of savages to contract their signs
as much as possible for the sake of rapidity/5 Hence
their natural source or origin often becomes doubtful or
is completely lost; as is likewise the case with articulate

Many signs, moreover,, which plainly stand in oppo-
sition to each other, appear to have had on both sides
a significant origin. This seems to hold good with
the signs used by the deaf and dumb for light and dark-
ness, for strength and weakness, &c. In a future chap-
ter I shall endeavour to show that the opposite gestures
of affirmation and negation, namely, vertically nodding
and laterally shaking the head, have both probably had
a natural beginning. The waving of the hand from
right to left, which is used as a negative by some savages,
may have been invented in imitation of shaking the
head; but whether the opposite movement of waving
the hand in a straight line from the f^ce, which is used
in affirmation, has arisen through antithesis or in some
quite distinct manner, is doubtful.

If we now turn to the gestures which are-innate
or common to all the individuals of the same species, and
which come under the present head of antithesis, it is
extremely doubtful, whether any of them were at first
deliberately invented and consciously performed. With
mankind the best instance of a gesture standing in direct

8 See on this subject Dr. W. R. Scott's interesting work,
' The Deaf and Dumb,' 2nd edit. 1870, p. 12. He says, " This
contracting- of natural gestures into much shorter gestures
than the natural expression requires, is very common
among-st the deaf and dumb. This contracted gesture
is frequently so shortened as nearly to lose all semblance
of the natural one, but to the deaf and dumb who use it,
it still has the force of the original expression."

. II.     THE PRINCIPLE OF ANTITHESIS.            $3

opposition to other movements, naturally assumed under

an  opposite frame of mind, is that of shrugging the                        f

shoulders.    This expresses impotence or an apology,—                       I

something which cannot be done, or cannot be avoided.                        I

The gesture is sometimes used consciously and volun-                       *^

tarily, but it is extremely improbable that it was at first                        I

deliberately invented, and afterwards fixed by habit;                        I

for not only do young children sometimes shrug their                        I

shoulders under the above states of mind, but the move-                        (

ment is accompanied, as will be shown in a future chap-                        &

ter, by various subordinate movements, which not one                        I

man in a thousand is aware of, unless he has specially                         I' is

attended to the subject.                                                                      ]t"

Dogs when approaching a strange dog, may find it                        ^
useful to show by their movements that they are friendly,

and. do not wish to fight.    "When two young dogs in                        1

play are growling and biting each other's faces and legs,                        J,
it is obvious that they mutually understand each other's
gestures and manners.   There seems, indeed, some de-
gree of instinctive knowledge in puppies and kittens, that
they must not use their sharp little teeth or claws too

freely in their play, though this sometimes happens and                        ,%

a squeal is the result; otherwise they would often injure                        /,

each other's eyes.   When my terrier bites my hand in                        "Ij

play, often snarling at the same time, if he bites too                        1*

hard and I say gently, gently, he goes on biting, but                        |J

answers me by a few wags of the tail, which seems to                        **

say C£ Never mind, it is all fun."   Although dogs do thus                        Mt

express, and may wish to express, to other dogs and to                        | -
man,, that they are in a- friendly state of mind, it is in-
credible that they could ever have deliberately thought
of drawing back and depressing their ears, instead of
holding them erect,—of lowering and wagging their
tails, instead of keeping them stiff and upright, &c.5
"because they knew that these movements stood in direct


opposition to those assumed under an opposite and savage
frame of mind.

Again, when a cat, or rather when some early pro-
genitor of the species, from feeling affectionate first
slightly arched its back., held its tail perpendicularly
upwards and pricked its ears, can it be believed that the
animal consciously wished thus to show that its frame
of mind was directly the reverse of that, when from being-
ready to fight or to spring on its prey, it assumed a
crouching attitude, curled its tail from side to side and
depressed its ears? Even still less can I believe that
my dog voluntarily put on his dejected attitude and
"hot-house face" which formed so complete a contrast
to his previous cheerful attitude and whole bearing. It
cannot be supposed that he knew that I should under-
stand his expression, and that he could thus soften my
heart and make me give up visiting the hot-house.

Hence for the development of the movements which
come under the present head, some other principle, dis-
tinct from the will and consciousness, must have inter-
vened. This principle appears to be that every move- •
ment which we have voluntarily performed through-
out our lives has required the action of certain muscles;
and when we have performed a directly opposite move-
ment, an opposite set of muscles has been habitually
brought into play,—as in turning to the right or to the
left, in pushing away or pulling an object towards us,
and in lifting or lowering a weight. So strongly are
our intentions and movements associated together, that
if we eagerly wish an object to move in any direction,
we can hardly avoid moving our bodies in the same
direction, although we may be perfectly aware that this
can have no influence. A good illustration of this fact
has already been given in the Introduction, namely, in
the grotesque movements of a young 'and eager billiard-



player, whilst watching the course of his ball. A man
or child in a passion, if he tells any one in a loud voice
to begone,, generally moves his arm as if to push him
away, although the offender may not be standing near,
and although there may be not the least need to explain
by a gesture what is meant. On the other hand, if we
eagerly desire some one to approach us closely, we act
as if pulling him towards us; and so in innumerable
other instances.

As the performance of ordinary movements of an
opposite kind., under opposite impulses of the will, has
become habitual in us and in the lower animals, so when
actions of one kind have become firmly associated with
any sensation or emotion, it appears natural that actions
of a directly opposite kind, though of no use, should be
unconsciously performed through habit and association,
under the influence of a directly opposite sensation or
emotion. • On this principle alone can I understand
how the gestures and expressions which come under
the present head of antithesis have originated. If in-
deed they are serviceable to man or to any other animal,
in aid of inarticulate cries or language, they will like-
wise be voluntarily employed, and the habit will thus
be strengthened. But whether or not of service as a
means of communication, the tendency to perform op-
posite movements under opposite sensations or emotions
would, if we may judge by analogy, become hereditary
through long practice; and there cannot be a doubt that
several expressive movements due to the principle of
antithesis are inherited.





The principle of direct action of the excited nervous sys-
tem on the body, independently of the will and in part
of habit—Change of colour in the hair—Trembling- of
the muscles—Modified secretions—.Perspiration—Ex-
pression of extreme pain—Of rage, great joy, and
terror—Contrast between the emotions which cause
and do not cause expressive movements—Exciting and
depressing states of the mind—Summary.

WE now come to our third Principle, namely, that cer-
tain actions which we recognize as expressive of certain
states of the mind, are the direct result of the consti-
tution of the nervous system, and have been from the
first independent of the will, and, to a large extent, of
habit. When the sensorium is strongly excited nerve-
force is generated in excess, and is transmitted in certain
directions, dependent on the connection of the nerve-
cells, and, as far as the muscular system is concerned,
on the nature of the movements which have been ha-
bitually practised. Or the supply of nerve-force may,
as it appears, be interrupted. Of course every movement
which we make is determined by the constitution of
the nervous system; but actions performed in obedience
to the will, or through habit, or through the principle
of antithesis, are here as far as possible excluded. Our
present subject is very obscure, but, from its impor-



tance must be discussed at some little length; and it is
always advisable to perceive clearly our ignorance.

The most striking case, though a rare and abnormal
one which can be adduced of the direct influence of the
nervous system, when strongly affected, on the body, is
the loss of colour in the hair, which has occasionally
been observed after extreme terror or grief. One au-
thentic instance has been recorded, in the case of a man
brought out for execution in India, in which the change
of colour was so rapid that it was perceptible to the eye.1

Another good case is that of the trembling of the
muscles, which is common to man and to many, or
most, of the lower animals. Trembling is of no service,
often of much disservice, and cannot have been at first
acquired through the will, and then rendered habitual
in association with any emotion. I arn assured by an
eminent authority that young children do not tremble,
but go into convulsions under the circumstances which
would induce excessive trembling in adults. Trembling
is excited in different individuals in very different de-
grees, and by the most diversified causes,—by cold to
the surface, before fever-fits, although the temperature
of the body is then above the normal standard; in
blood-poisoning, delimim tremens, and other diseases;
by general failure of power in old age; by exhaustion
after excessive fatigue; locally from severe injuries, such
as burns; and, in an especial manner, by the passage of
a catheter. Of all emotions, fear notoriously is the most
apt to induce trembling; but so do occasionally great an-
ger and joy. I remember once seeing a boy who had
just shot his first snipe on the wing, and his hands

1 See the interesting- cases collected by M. G. Pouchet
in the * Revue des Deux Mondes,' January 1, 1872, p. 79.
An instance was also brought some years ago before the
British Association at Belfast.



trembled to such a degree from delight, that he could
not for some time reload his gun; and I have heard
of an exactly similar case with an Australian savage,
to whom a gun had been lent. Fine music, from the
vague emotions thus excited, causes a shiver to run
down the backs of some persons. There seems to be
very little in common in the above several physical
causes and emotions to account for trembling; and Sir
J. Paget, to "whom I am indebted for several of the
above statements, informs me that the subject is a very
obscure one. As trembling is sometimes caused by
rage, long before exhaustion can have set in, and as it
sometimes accompanies great joy, it would appear that
any strong excitement of the nervous system interrupts
the steady flow of nerve-force to the muscles.2

The manner in which the secretions of the alimentary
canal and of certain glands—as the liver, kidneys, or
mammas—are affected by strong emotions, is another
excellent instance of the direct action of the sensorium
on these organs, independently of the will or of any
serviceable associated habit. There is the greatest dif-
ference in different persons in the parts which are thus
affected, and in the degree of their affection.

The heart, which goes on uninterruptedly beating
night and day in so wonderful a manner, is extremely
sensitive to external stimulants. The great physiologist,
Claude Bernard,3 has shown how the least excitement
of a sensitive nerve reacts on the heart; even when a
nerve is touched so slightly that no pain can possibly

fi"  '

2 Miiller remarks (£ Elements of Physiology,' Eng.
translat. vol. ii. p. 934) that when the feelings are very
intense, " all the spinal nerves become affected to the ex-
tent of imperfect paralysis, or the excitement of trem-
bling of the whole "body."

* * Lemons sur les Prop, des Tissus Vivants,' 1866, pp.


be felt by the animal under experiment. Hence when
the mind is strongly excited, we might expect that it
would instantly affect in a direct manner the heart;
and this is universally acknowledged and felt to be the
case. Claude Bernard also repeatedly insists, and this
deserves especial notice, that when the heart is affected
it reacts on the brain; and the state of the brain again
reacts through the pneumo-gastric nerve on the heart;
so that under any excitement there will be much mu-
tual action and reaction between these, the two most
important organs of the body.

The vaso-motor system, which regulates the diameter "
of the small arteries, is directly acted on by the sen-
sormm, as we see when a man blushes from shame; but
In this latter case the checked transmission of nerve-
force to the vessels of the face can, I think, be partly
explained in a curious manner through habit. We shall
also be able to throw some light, though very little, on
the involuntary erection of the hair under the emotions
of terror and rage. The secretion of tears depends, no
doubt, on the connection of certain nerve-cells; but
here again we can trace some few of the steps by which
the flow of nerve-force through the requisite channels
has become habitual under certain emotions.

A brief consideration of the outward signs of some of
the stronger sensations and emotions will best serve to
show us, although vaguely, in how complex a manner
the principle tinder consideration of the direct action
of the excited nervous system of the body, is combined
with the principle of habitually associated, serviceable

When animals suffer from an agony of pain, they
generally writhe about with frightful contortions; and
those which habitually use their voices utter piercing


cries or groans. Almost every muscle of the body is
brought into strong action. With man the mouth may
be closely compressed, or more commonly the lips are
retracted; with the teeth clenched or ground together.
There is said to be " gnashing of teeth " in hell; and I
have plainly heard the grinding of the molar teeth of
a cow which was suffering acutely from inflammation
of the bowels. The female hippopotamus in the Zoo-
logical Gardens., when she produced her young., suf-
fered greatly; she incessantly walked about., or rolled
on her sides, opening and closing her jaws, and clatter-
ing her teeth together.4 With man the eyes stare wildly
as in horrified astonishment, or the brows are heavily
contracted. Perspiration bathes the body, and drops
trickle down the face. The circulation and respiration
are much affected. Hence the nostrils are generally
dilated and often quiver; or the breath may be held .
until the blood stagnates in the purple face. If the
agony be severe and prolonged, these signs all change;
utter prostration follows, with fainting or convulsions..

A sensitive nerve when irritated transmits some in-
fluence to the nerve-cell, whence it proceeds; and this
transmits its influence, first to the corresponding nerve-
cell on the opposite side of the body, and then upwards
and downwards along the cerebro-spinal column to other
nerve-cells, to a greater or less extent, according to the
strength of the excitement; so that, ultimately, the whole
nervous system may be affected.5 This involuntary trans-
mission of nerve-force may or may* not be accompa-

4  Mr. Bartlett, " Notes on the Birth, of a Hippopota-
mus," Proc. Zoolog-. Soc. 1871, p. 255.

5  See, on this subject, Claude Bernard, * Tissus Vivants,'
1866, pp. 316, 337, 358.    Virchow expresses himself to al-
most exactly the  same  effect in his  essay  " Ueber  das
Rtickenmark"   (Sammlung- wissenschaft.  Vortrage,   1871,
s. 28).


nied by consciousness. Why the irritation of a nerve-
cell should generate or liberate nerve-force is riot known;
but that this is the case seems to be the conclusion ar-
rived at by all the greatest physiologists., such as Miiller,
Virchow, Bernard, &c.° As Mr. Herbert Spencer re-
marks, it may be received as an. " unquestionable truth
that, at any moment, the existing quantity of liberated
nerve-force, which in an inscrutable way produces in us
the state we call feeling,, must expend itself in some
direction—must generate an equivalent manifestation
of force somewhere;" so that, when the ccrebro-spiiml
system is highly excited and nerve-force is liberated in
excess., it may be expended in intense sensations., active
thought, violent movements., or increased activity of
the glands.7 Mr. Spencer further maintains that an
"overflow of nerve-force, undirected by any motive, will
manifestly take the most habitual routes; and, if these
do not suffice, will next overflow into the less habitual
ones." Consequently the facial and respiratory mus-
cles, which are the most used, will be apt to be first
brought into action; then those of the upper extremi-
ties, next those of the lower, and finally those of the
whole body.8

An emotion may be very strong, but it will have
little tendency to induce movements of any kind, if it

0 Miiller (' Elements of "Physiology,' ICtiflf. translat. vol.

ii. p. 032) in speaking of the nerves, ways, ** any midden,
change of condition of whatever kind nets tho tfervoiiH
principle into action." See, Virchow and Bernard on the
same, subject in passages in the two works referred to
in my last foot-note.

T H. Spencer, * Kssays, Scientific, Political/ &e., Second
Series, 1863, pp. 109, 111.

6 Sir H. Holland, in speaking (* Medical NoteR and Re-
flexions,' 1839, p. 32B) of that curious state of body called
the fl&f/etn, remarks that it seems due to ** an neomnula-
tion of some cause of irritation which requires xmimuilur
action for its relief."



has not commonly led to voluntary action for its relief or
gratification; and when movements are excited, their
nature is, to a large extent, determined by those which
have often and voluntarily been performed for some
definite end under the same emotion. Great pain urges
all animals, and has urged them during endless genera-
tions, to make the most violent and diversified efforts to
escape from the cause of suffering. Even when a limb
or other separate part of the body is hurt, we often see
a tendency to shake it, as if to shake off the cause,
though this may obviously be impossible. Thus a habit
of exerting with the utmost force all the muscles will
have been established, whenever great suffering is ex-
perienced. As the muscles of the chest and vocal or-
gans are habitually used, these will be particularly liable
to be acted on, and loud, harsh screams or cries will
be uttered. But the advantage derived from outcries
has here probably come into play in an important man-
ner; for the young of most animals, when in dis-
tress or danger, call loudly to their parents for aid,
as do the members of the same community for mutual

Another principle, namely, the internal conscious-
ness that the power or capacity of the nervous system is
limited, will have strengthened, though in a subordinate
degree, the tendency to violent action under extreme
suffering. A man cannot think deeply and exert his
utmost muscular force. As Hippocrates long ago ob-
served, if two pains are felt at the same time, the
severer one dulls the other. Martyrs, in the ecstasy of
their religious fervour have often, as it would appear,
been insensible to the most horrid tortures. Sailors
who are going to be flogged sometimes take a piece of
lead into their mouths, in order to bite it with their
utmost force, and thus to bear the pain. Parturient


^romen prepare to exert their muscles to the utmost in
order to relieve their sufferings.

We thus see that the undirected radiation of nerve-
force from the nerve-cells which are first affected—
the long-continued habit of attempting by struggling
to escape from the cause of suffering—and the con-
sciousness that voluntary muscular exertion relieves pain,
have all probably concurred in giving a tendency to the
most violent, almost 'convulsive, movements under ex-
treme suffering; and such movements, including those
of the vocal organs, are universally recognized as highly
expressive of this condition.

As the mere touching of a sensitive nerve reacts in a
direct manner on the heart, severe pain will obviously
react on it in like manner, but far more energetically.
jCsfevertheless, even in this case, we must not overlook
the indirect effects of habit on the heart, as we shall
see when we consider the signs of rage.

When a man suffers from an agony of pain, the per-
spiration often trickles down his face; and I have been
assured by a veterinary surgeon that he has frequently
seen drops falling from the belly and running down the
inside of the thighs of horses, and from the bodies of
cattle, when thus suffering. He has observed this, when                            ||

there has been no struggling which would account for                            11

the perspiration.   The whole body of the female hippo-                            pf

potamus, before alluded to, was covered with red-col-                             ||

oured perspiration whilst giving birth to her young.   So                             jj

it is with extreme fear; the same vet-erina^ has often                              |

seen horses sweating from this cause; as has Mr. Bartlett                             A

with the rhinoceros; and with man it is a well-known                            m

symptom.   The cause of perspiration bursting forth in                            p

these cases is quite obscure; but it is thought by some
physiologists to be connected with the failing power of
the capillary circulation; and we know that the vaso-


' "                                           r

motor system, which regulates the capillary circulation,
is much influenced by the mind. With respect to the
movements of certain muscles of the face under great
suffering, as well as from other emotions,, these will be
best considered when we treat of the special expressions
of man'and of the lower animals.

We will now turn to the characteristic symptoms of
Eage. Under this powerful emotion the action of the
heart is much accelerated/ or it may be much dis-               f*

turbed. The face reddens, or it becomes purple from the
impeded return of the blood, or may turn deadly pale.
The respiration is laboured, the chest heaves, and the
dilated nostrils quiver. The whole body often trembles.
The voice is affected. The teeth arc clenched or ground               ;

together, and the muscular system is commonly stimu-               ;

lated to violent, almost frantic action. But the gestures
of a man in this state usually differ from the purposeless
writhings and struggles of one suffering from an agony
of pain; for they represent more or less plainly the act               T

of striking or fighting with an enemy.                                        ,

All these'signs of rage are probably in large part,               i

and some of them appear to be wholly, due to the direct              I

action of the excited sensorium.    But animals of all              I

kinds, and their progenitors before them, when attacked              f

or threatened by an enemy, have exerted their utmost              f

powers in fighting and in defending themselves.    Un-              f

less an animal does thus act, or has the intention, or at              J

least the desire, to attack its enemy, it cannot properly              |

be said to be enraged. An inherited habit of muscular
exertion will thus have been gained in association with
rage; and this will directly or indirectly affect vari-

0 I am much indebted to Mr. A. H. Garrod for having1
informed me of M. Lorain's work on the pulse, in which
a sphyginogram of a woman in a rage is given; and
this shows much difference in the rate and other charac-
ters from that of the same woman in her ordinary state.


ous organs, in nearly the same manner as does great bod-
ily suffering.

The heart no doubt will likewise be affected in a direct
manner; but it will also in all probability be affected
through habit; and all the more so from not being
under the control of the will. We know that any great
exertion which we voluntarily make, affects the heart,
through mechanical and other principles which need
not here be considered; and it was shown in the first
chapter that nerve-force flows readily through habitu-
ally used channels,—through, the nerves of voluntary
or involuntary movement, and through those of sen-
sation. Thus even a moderate amount of exertion will
tend to act on the heart; and on the principle of asso-
ciation, of which so many instances have been given,
we may feel nearly sure that any sensation or emotion,
as great pain or rage, which has habitually led to much
muscular action, will immediately influence the flow of
nerve-force to the heart, although there may not be at
the time any muscular exertion.

The heart, as I have said, will be all the more readily
affected through habitual associations, as it is not under
the control of the will. A man when moderately angry,
or even when enraged, may command the movements of
his body, but he cannot prevent his heart from beating
rapidly. His chest will perhaps give a few heaves, and
his nostrils just quiver, for the movements of respiration
are only in part voluntary. In like manner those mus-
cles of the face which are least obedient to the will,
will sometimes alone betray a slight and passing emo-
tion. The glands again are wholly independent of the
will, and a man suffering from grief may command
his features, but cannot always prevent the tears from
coming into his eyes. A hungry man, if tempting food
is placed before him, may not show his hunger by any



I '«* V«



outward gesture, but lie cannot check the secretion of

Under a transport of Joy or of vivid Pleasure,, there is
a strong tendency to various purposeless movements, and
to the xitterance of various sounds. We see this in our
young children, in their loud laughter, clapping of hands,
and jumping for joy; in the bounding and barking of a
dog when going out to walk with his master; and in the
frisking of a horse when turned out into an open field.
Joy quickens the circulation, and this stimulates the
brain, which again reacts on the whole body. The
above purposeless movements and increased heart-action
may be attributed in chief part to the excited state of
the sensorium,10 and to the consequent undirected over-
flow, as Mr. Herbert Spencer insists, of nerve-force. It
"deserves notice, that it is chiefly the anticipation of a
pleasure, and not its actual enjoyment, which leads to
purposeless and extravagant movements of the body,
and to the utterance of various sounds. We see this
in our children when they expect any great pleasure or
treat; and dogs, which have been bounding about at

10 How powerfully intense joy excites the brain, and
how the brain reacts on the body, is well shown in the
rare cases of Psychical Intoxication. Dr. J. Grichton
Browne (' Medical Mirror/ 1865) records the case of a
young man of strongly nervous temperament, who, on
hearing by a telegram that a fortune had been bequeathed
him, first became pale, then exhilarated, and soon in
the. highest spirits, but flushed and very restless. He then
took a walk with a friend for the sake of tranquillising
himself, but returned staggering in his gait, uproariously
laughing, yet irritable in temper, incessantly talking, and
singing loudly in the public streets. It was positively
ascertained that he had not touched any spirituous liquor,
though every one thought that he was intoxicated. Vomit-
ing after a time came on, and the half-digested contents
of his stomach were examined, but no odour of alcohol
could be detected. He then slept heavily, and on awak-
ing was well, except that he suffered from headache,
nausea, and prostration of strength.

CHAP. III. ACTION OF THE NERVOUS SYSTEM.          77                              >

the sight of a plate of food, when they get it do not                          f

show their delight by any outward sign, not even by

wagging their tails.    Now with animals of all kinds,                          r

the acquirement of almost all their pleasures, with the

exception of those of warmth and rest, are associated,                          •!

and have long been associated with active movements,,

as in the hunting or search for food, and in their court-                          ;

ship.   Moreover, the mere exertion of the muscles after

long rest or confinement is in itself a pleasure, as we

ourselves feel:, and as we see in the play of young ani-                         *

mals.   Therefore on this latter principle alone we might

perhaps expect, that vivid pleasure would be apt to show                          '

itself conversely in muscular movements.

With all or almost all animals, even with birds,
Terror causes the body to tremble. The skin becomes
pale, .sweat breaks out, and the hair bristles. The se-
cretions of the alimentary canal, and of the kidneys are
increased, and they are involuntarily voided, owing to
the relaxation of the sphincter muscles, as is known to be
the case with man, and as I have seen with cattle, dogs,
cats, and monkeys. The breathing is hurried. The heart
beats quickly, wildly, and violently; but whether it
pumps the blood more efficiently through the body may                         '

be doubted, for the surface seems bloodless and the
strength of the muscles soon fails. In a frightened horse
1 have felt through the saddle the beating of the heart
so plainly that 1 could have counted the beats. The                         ,'

mental faculties are much disturbed.   Utter prostration                         "

soon follows, and even fainting.   A terrified canary-bird                         *

has been seen not only to tremble and to turn white
about the base of the bill, but to faint; n and I once                          «>

caught a robin in a room, which fainted so completely,                         I

that for a time I thought it dead.                                                         \

11 Dr. Darwin, * Zoonomia,' 1794, vol. i. p. 148.




Most of these symptoms are probably the direct result,
independently of habit, of the disturbed state of the
sensorium; but it is doubtful whether they ought to be
wholly thus accounted for. When an animal is alarmed •
it almost always stands motionless for a moment, in
order to collect its senses and to ascertain the source
of danger, and sometimes for the sake of escaping de-
tection. But headlong flight soon follows, with no hus-
banding of the strength as in fighting, and the animal
continues to fly as long as the danger lasts., until utter
prostration, with failing respiration and circulation,, with
all the muscles quivering and profuse sweating., renders
further flight impossible. Hence it does not seem im-
probable that the principle of associated habit may in
part account for, or at least augment, some of the above-
named characteristic symptoms of extreme terror.

That the principle of associated habit has played an
important part in causing the movements expressive of
the foregoing several strong emotions and sensations,
we may, I think, conclude from considering firstly, some
other strong emotions which do not ordinarily require
for their relief or gratification any voluntary move-
ment; and secondly the contrast in nature between
the so-called exciting and depressing states of the
mind. Ko emotion is stronger than maternal love; but
a mother may feel the deepest- love for her helpless
infant, and yet not show it by any outward sign; or
only by slight caressing movements, with a gentle smile
and tender eyes. But let any one intentionally injure
her infant, and see what a change! how she starts up
with threatening aspect, how her eyes sparkle and her
face reddens, how her "bosom heaves, nostrils dilate, and
heart beats; for anger, and not maternal love, has ha-
bitually led to action. The love between the opposite


sexes is widely different from maternal love; and wlien
lovers meet, we know that their hearts beat quickly,
their breathing is hurried,, and their faces flush; for
this love is not inactive like that of a mother for her

A man may have his mind filled, with the blackest
hatred or suspicion,, or be corroded with envy or jealousy,
but as these feelings do not at once lead to action., and as
they commonly last for some time, they arc not shown
by any outward sign., excepting that a man in this state
assuredly does not appear cheerful or good-tempered.
If indeed these feelings break out into overt acts, rage
takes their place., and will, be plainly exhibited. Paint-
ers can hardly portray suspicion., jealousy, envy, &e'.,
except by the aid of accessories which tell the talc;
and poets use sxieh vague and fanciful expressions as
"green-eyed jealousy." Spenser describes suspicion as
".Foul, ill-favoured, and grim, under his eyebrows look-
ing still askance," &c.; Shakespeare speaks of envy "as
lean-faced in her loathsome case;" and in another place
he says., " no black envy shall make my grave;" and
again as " above pale envy's threatening reach."

Emotions and sensations have often been classed, as
exciting or depressing. When all the organs of the
body and mind,—those of voluntary and involuntary
movement, of perception, sensation, thought, &c.,—
perform their functions more energetically and rapidly
than usual, a man or animal may be said to be excited,
and, under an opposite state, to be depressed. Anger
and joy are from the first exciting emotions, and they
naturally lead, more especially the former, to energetic
movements, which react on the heart and this again
on the brain. A physician once remarked to me as a
proof of the exciting nature of anger, that a man when
excessively jaded will sometimes invent imaginary



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

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.


All this reacts on the brain,, and prostration soon
follows with collapsed muscles and dulled eyes. As
associated habit no longer prompts the sufferer to action,
he is urged by his friends to voluntary exertion, and
not to give way to silent, motionless grief. Exertion
stimulates the heart, and this reacts on the brain, and
aids the mind to bear its heavy load.

Pain, if severe, soon induces extreme depression or
prostration; but it is at first a stimulant and excites to
action, as we see when we whip a horse, and as is shown
by the horrid tortures inflicted in foreign lands on ex-
hausted dray-bullocks, to rouse them to renewed exertion.
Fear again is the most depressing of all the emotions;
and it soon induces utter, helpless prostration, as if in
consequence of, or in association with, the most violent
and prolonged attempts to escape from the danger,
though no such attempts have actually been made.
Nevertheless, even extreme fear often acts at first as a
powerful stimulant. A man or animal driven through
terror to desperation, is endowed with. wonderful
strength, and is notoriously dangerous in the highest

On the whole we may conclude that the principle of
the direct action of the sensorium on the body, due to
the constitution of the nervous system, and from the first
independent of the will, has been highly influential in
determining many expressions. Good instances are
afforded by the trembling of the muscles, the sweating
of the skin, the modified secretions of the alimentary
canal and glands, under various emotions and sensations.
But actions of this kind are often combined with others,
which follow from our first principle, namely, that actions
which have often been of direct or indirect service, under
certain states of the mind, in order to gratify or relieve


certain sensations, desires, &e., are still performed
analogous circumstances through mere habit althougi3-
of no service. We have combinations of this kind? at least;
in part, in the frantic gestures of rage and in the writb.—
ings of extreme pain; and, perhaps, In the increased ac-
tion of the heart and of the respiratory organs. Even
when these and other emotions or sensations are arousecL
in a very feeble manner, there will still he a tendencv to
similar actions, owing to the force of long-associated
habit; and those actions which are least under voluntary
control will generally be longest retained. Our seeoncl
principle of antithesis has likewise occasionally come Into

Finally, so many expressive movements can be  ex-

plained, as I trust will be seen in the course of this
volume, through the three principles which have now
been discussed, that we may hope hereafter to see all
thus explained, or by closely analogous principles. It Is-,
however, often impossible to decide how much weiglrfc
ought to be attributed., in each particular case, to one
of our principles^ and how much to another; and very
many points in the theory of Expression remain inex-




The emission of sounds—Vocal sounds—Sounds otherwise
produced—Erection of the dermal appendages, hairs,
feathers, &c., under the emotions of anger and terror
—The drawing- back of the ears as a preparation for
fighting, and as an expression of anger—Erection of
the ears and raising the head, a sign of attention.

IN this and the following chapter I will describe, "but
only in sufficient detail to illustrate my subject, the ex-
pressive movements, under different states of the mind,
of some few well-known animals. But before consider-
ing them in due succession, it will save much useless
repetition to discuss certain means of expression common
to most of them.

TJie emission of Sounds.—With many kinds of ani-
mals, man included,, the vocal organs are efficient in the
highest degree as a means of expression. We have seen,
in the last chapter, that when the sensorium is strongly
excited, the muscles of the body are generally thrown -
into violent action; and as a consequence, loud sounds
are uttered, however silent the animal may generally
be, and although the sounds may be of no use. Hares
and rabbits for instance, never, I believe, use their vocal
organs except in the extremity of suffering; as, when
a wounded hare is killed by the sportsman, or when a
young rabbit is caught by a stoat. Cattle and horses

84:                     MEANS OF EXPRESSION            CHA.P. iv.

sufier great pain in silence; hut when this is excessive,
and especially when associated with terror, they utter
fearful sounds. I have often recognized, from a dis-
tance on the Pampas, the agonized death-bellow of the
cattle, when caught by the lasso and hamstrung. It Is
said that horses, when attacked by wolves, utter loud and
peculiar screams of distress.

Involuntary and purposeless contractions of the mus-
cles of the chest and glottis, excited in the above man-
ner, may have first given rise to the emission of vocal
sounds. But the voice is now largely used by many ani-
mals for various purposes; and habit seems to have
played an important part in its employment under other
circumstances. Naturalists have remarked, I believe
with truth, that social animals, from habitually using
their vocal organs as a means of intercommunication,
use them on other occasions much more freely than other
animals. But there are marked exceptions to this rule,
for instance, with the rabbit. The principle, also, of as-
sociation, which is so widely extended in its power, has
likewise played its part. Hence it follows that the voice,
from having heen habitually employed as a serviceable
aid under certain conditions, inducing pleasure, pain,
rage, &c., is commonly used whenever the same sensa-
tions or emotions are excited, under quite different con-
ditions^ or in a lesser degree.

The sexes of many animals incessantly call for each
. other during the "breeding-season; and in not a few eases,
the male endeavours thus to charm or excite the female.
This, indeed, seems to have been the primeval use and
means of development of the voice, as I have attempted
to show in my * Descent of Man/ Thus the use of the
vocal organs will have become associated with the an-
ticipation of the strongest pleasure which animals are
capable of feeling. Animals which live in society often




call to each other when separated, and evidently feel
much joy at meeting; as we see with a horse, on the re-
turn of his companion, for whom he has been neighing.
The mother calls incessantly for her lost young ones; for
instance, a cow for her calf; and the young of many ani-
mals call for their mothers. When a flock of sheep is
scattered, the ewes bleat incessantly for their lambs, and
their mutual pleasure at coming together is manifest.
Woe betide the man who meddles with the young of the
larger and fiercer quadrupeds, if they hear the cry of
distress from their young. Rage leads to the violent
exertion of all the muscles, including those of the voice;
and some animals, when enraged, endeavour to strike
terror into their enemies by its power and harshness, as
the lion does by roaring, and the dog by growling. I
infer that their object is to strike terror, because the lion
at the same time erects the hair of its mane, and the dog
the hair along its back, and thus they make themselves
appear as large and terrible as possible. Rival males
try to excel and challenge each other by their voices,
and this leads to deadly contests. Thus the use of the
voice will have become associated with the emotion of
anger, however it may be aroused. We have also seen
that intense pain, like rage, leads to violent outcries, and
the exertion of screaming by itself gives some relief;
and thus the use of the voice will have become associ-
ated with suffering of any kind.

The-cause of widely different sounds being uttered
under different emotions and sensations is a very ob-
scure subject. Nor does the rule always hold good that
there is any marked difference. For instance with the
dog, the bark of anger and that of joy do not differ much,
though they can be distinguished. It is not probable
that any precise explanation of the cause or source of
each particular sound, under different states of the mind,

86                     MEANS OF EXPRESSION           CHAP. IV.

will ever be given. We know that some animals, after
being domesticated, have acquired the habit of utter-
ing sounds which were not natural to them.1 Thus do-
mestic dogs, and even tamed jackals, have learnt to bark,
which is a noise not proper to any species of the genus,
with the exception of the Canis latrans of North Ameri-
ca, which is said to bark. Some breeds, also, of the do-
mestic pigeon have learnt to coo in a new and. quite
peculiar manner.

The character of the human voice, under the influ-
ence of various emotions, has been discussed by Mr. Her-
bert Spencer 2 in his interesting essay on Music. He
clearly shows that the voice alters much under different
conditions, in loudness and in quality, that is,'in reso-
nance and timbre, in pitch and intervals. No one can
listen to an eloquent orator or preacher, or to a man call-
ing angrily to another, or to one expressing astonish-
ment, without being struck with the truth of Mr. Spen-
cer's remarks. It is curious how early in life the modu-
lation of the voice becomes expressive. With one of my
children, under the age of two years, I clearly perceived
that his humph of assent was rendered by a slight modu-
lation strongly emphatic; and that by a peculiar whine
his negative expressed obstinate determination. Mr.
Spencer further shows that emotional speech, in all the
above respects is intimately related to vocal music, and
consequently to instrumental music; and he attempts
to explain the characteristic qualities of both on physio-
logical grounds—namely, on "the general law that a
feeling is a stimulus to muscular action." It may be

1 See the evidence on this head in my ' Variation of
Animals and Plants under Domestication,' vol. i. p. 27.
On the cooing- of pig-eons, vol. i. pp. 154, 155.

2.' Essays, Scientific, Political, and Speculative,' 1858.
* The Origin and Function of Music,' p. 359.

CHAP. IV.                       IN ANIMALS.                                 87

admitted that the voice is affected, through, this law; but
the explanation appears to me too general and vague
to throw much light on the various differences, with the
exception of that of loudness, between ordinary speech
and emotional speech, or singing.

This remark holds good, whether we believe that
the various qualities of the voice originated in speaking
under the excitement of strong feelings, and that these
qualities have subsequently been transferred to vocal
music; or whether we believe, as I maintain, that the
habit of uttering musical sounds was first developed, as
a means of courtship, in the early progenitors of man,
and thus became associated with the strongest emotions
of which they were capable,—namely, ardent love, rival-
ry and triumph. That animals utter musical notes is
familiar to every one, as we may daily hear in the sing-
ing of birds. It is a more remarkable fact that an ape,
one of the Gibbons, produces an exact octave of musical
sounds, ascending and descending the scale by half-
tones; so that this monkey " alone of brute mammals
may be said to sing.1'3 From this fact, and from the
analogy of other animals, I have been led to infer that
the progenitors of man probably uttered musical tones,
before they had acquired the power of articulate speech;
and that consequently, when the voice is used under
any strong emotion, it tends to assume, through the prin-
ciple of association, a musical character. "We can- plainly
perceive, with some of the lower animals, that the males
employ their voices to please the females, and that they

8 ' The Descent of Man,' 1870, vol. ii. p. 332. The words
quoted are from Professor Owen. It has lately been shown
that some quadrupeds much lower in the scale than mon-
keys, namely Rodents, are able to produce correct musical
tones: see the account'of a singing* Hesperomys, by the
Hev. S. Lockwood, in the * American Naturalist,' vol. v.
December, 1871, p. 761.





themselves take pleasure in their own vocal utterances;
but why particular sounds are uttered, and why these
give pleasure cannot at present be explained.

That the pitch of the voice bears some relation to
certain states of feeling is tolerably clear. A person
gently complaining of ill-treatment, or slightly suffer-
ing, almost always speaks in a high-pitched voice. Dogs,
when a little impatient, often make a high piping note
through their noses, which at once strikes us as plain-
tive; 4 but how difficult it is to know whether the sound
is essentially plaintive, or only appears so in this par-
ticular case, from our having learnt by experience what
it means! Eengger, states5 that the monkeys (Cebus
amr<&), which he kept in Paraguay, expressed astonish-
ment by a half-piping, half-snarling noise; anger or im-
patience, by repeating the sound liu liu in a deeper,
grunting voice; and fright or pain, by shrill screams.
On the other hand, with mankind, deep groans and high
piercing screams equally express an agony of pain.
Laughter may be either high or low; so that, with adult
men, as Haller long ago remarked,6 the sound partakes
of the character of the vowels (as pronounced in German)
0 and A ; whilst with children and women, it has more
of the character of E and /; and these latter vowel-
sounds naturally have, as Helmholtz has shown, a higher
pitch than the former; yet both tones of laughter equally
express enjoyment or amusement.

In considering the mode in which vocal utterances
express emotion, we are naturally led to inquire into

4  Mr. Tylor  ('Primitive Culture,' 1871,  vol. \.  p.  166),
in his discussion on this subject, alludes to the whining
of the dog.

5  * Naturgeschichte der Saugethiere von ^Paraguay,' 1830,
s. 46.

6   Quoted  by  Gratiolet,   ' De  la  Physionomie '   1865,  p.

CHAP. IV.                      IN ANIMALS.                                59

the cause of what is called " expression" in music.
Upon this point Mr. Litchfield, who has long attended
to the subject of music, has been so kind as to give me
the following remarks:—" The question, what is the es-
sence of musical ' expression? involves a number of ob-
scure points, which, so far as I am aware, are as yet
unsolved enigmas. Up to a certain point, however, any
law which is found to hold as to the expression of the
emotions by simple sounds must apply to the more de-
veloped mode of expression in song, which may be taken
as the primary type of all music. A great part of the
emotional effect of a song depends on the character of
the action by which the sounds are produced. In songs.,
for instance, which express great vehemence of passion,
the effect often chiefly depends on the forcible utterance
of some one or two characteristic passages which demand
great exertion of vocal force; and it will be frequently
noticed that a song of this character fails of its proper
effect when sung by a voice of sufficient power and range
to give the characteristic passages without much exer-
tion. This is, no doubt, the secret of the loss of effect
so often produced by the transposition of a song from
one key to another. The effect is thus seen to depend
not merely on the actual sounds, but also in part on the
nature of the action which produces the sounds. Indeed
it is obvious that whenever we feel the c expression y of
a song to be due to its quickness or slowness of move-
ment—to smoothness of flow, loudness of utterance, and
so on—we are, in fact, interpreting the muscular actions
which produce sound, in the same way in which we in-
terpret muscular action generally. But this leaves un-
explained the more subtle and more specific effect which
we call the musical expression of the song—the delight
given by its melody, or even by the separate sounds which
make up the melody. This is an effect indefinable in

90                    MEANS OF EXPRESSION            CHAP. IV.

language—one vrhieh, so far as I am aware., no one lias
been able to analyse, and which the ingenious specula-
tion of Mr. Herbert Spencer as to the origin of music
leaves quite unexplained. For it is certain that the
melodic effect of a series of sounds does not depend in
the least on their loudness or softness, or on their abso-
lute pitch. A tune is always the same tune, whether it
is sung loudly or softly., "by a child or a man; whether
it is played on a flute or on a trombone. The purely
musical effect of any sound depends on its place in what
is technically called a ' scale;' the same sound produc-
ing absolutely different effects 011 the ear, according as
it is heard in connection with one or another series of

£< It is on this relative association of the sounds that
all the essentially characteristic effects which are summed
up in the phrase ' musical expression/ depend. But
why certain associations of sounds have such-and-such,
effects, is a problem which yet remains to be solved.
These effects must indeed, in some way or other., be con-
nected with the well-known arithmetical relations be-
tween the rates of vibration of the sounds which form
a musical scale. And it is possible—"but this is merely
a suggestion—that the greater or less meclianieal facility
with which the vibrating apparatus of the human larynx
passes from one state of vibration to another, may have
heen a primary cause of the greater or less pleasure pro-
duced by various sequences of sounds."

But leaving aside these complex questions and eon-
fining ourselves to the simpler sounds, we can, at least.,
see some reasons for the association of certain kinds of
sounds with certain states of mind. A scream, for in-
stance, uttered" by a young animal, or "by one of the
members of a community, as a call for assistance, will
naturally "be loud, prolonged, and high, so as to pene-

CHAP. IV.                      IN ANIMALS.                                91

trate to a distance. For Helmhdltz has shown 7 that,
owing to the shape of the internal cavity of the human
ear and its consequent power of resonance^ high notes
produce a particularly strong impression. When male
animals utter sounds in order to please the females, they
would naturally employ those which are sweet to the
ears of the species; and it appears that the same sounds
are often pleasing to widely different animals, owing to
the similarity of their nervous systems, as we ourselves
perceive in the singing of birds and even in the chirping
of certain tree-frogs giving us pleasure. On the other
hand, sounds prodxiced in order to strike terror into an
enemy, would naturally he harsh or displeasing.

Whether the principle of antithesis has come into
play with sounds, as might perhaps have been expected,
is doubtful. The interrupted, laughing or tittering
sounds made by man and by various kinds of monkeys
when pleased, are as different as possible from the pro-
longed screams of these animals when distressed. The
deep grunt of satisfaction uttered by a pig, when pleased
with its food, is widely different from its harsh scream
of pain or terror. But with the dog, as lately remarked,
the bark of anger and that of joy are sounds which by
no means stand in opposition to each other; and so it is
in some other cases.

There is another obscure point, namely, whether the
sounds which are produced under various states of the
•mind determine the shape of the mouth, or whether its
shape is not; determined by independent causes, and the
sound thus modified. When, young infants cry they
open their mouths widely, and this, no doubt, is neces-

7 ' Th6orie Physiologique de la Mnsique,' Paris, 1868,
p. 146. HelmhoHz has also fully rHscnssed. in this pro-
found work the relation of the form of the cavity of
the mouth to the production of vowel-sounds,

92                    MEANS OP BXPKESSIOK     CRAP. IV,

sary for pouring forth a full volume of sound; but the
mouth then assumes, from a quite distinct cause., an
almost quadrangular shape, depending, as will hereafter
be explained, on the firm closing of the eyelids, and con-
sequent drawing up of the upper lip. How far this
square shape of the mouth modifies the wailing or cry-
ing sound, I am not prepared to say; but we know from
the researches of Helniholtz and others that tlie form
of the cavity of the mouth and lips determines the na-
ture and pitch of the vowel sounds which are produced.
It will also be shown in a future chapter that, under
the feeling of contempt or disgust, there is a ten dene v,
from Intelligible causes, to blow out of the month, or
nostrils, and this produces sounds like pooh or pish.
When an}- one is startled or suddenly astonished, there
is an instantaneous tendency, likewise from an intel-
ligible cause, namely, to be ready for prolonged exer-
tion, to open the month widely, so as to draw a deep and
rapid inspiration. When the next full expiration fol-
lows, the mouth is slightly closed, and the lipsy from
causes hereafter to be discussed, are somewhat protruded;
and this form of the mouth, if the voice "be at all ex-
erted., produces, according to Helniholtz, the sound of
the vowel 0. Certainly a deep sound of a prolonged
Oh! may be heard from a whole crowd of people im-
mediately after witnessing any astonishing spectacle.
If, together with surprise, pain "be felt, there is a tend-
ency to contract all the muscles of the "body, including
those of the face, and the lips will then he drawn back;
and this will perhaps account for the sound "becoming
higher and assuming the character of Ah ! or A. ch I As
fear causes all the muscles of the body to tremble, the
voice naturally "becomes tremulous, and at the same time
husky from the dryness of the mouth, owing to thte sali-
vary glands failing to act. "Why the laughter of man and




the tittering of monkeys should be a rapidly reiterated
sound, cannot be explained. During the utterance of
these sounds, the mouth is transversely elongated by
the corners being drawn backwards and upwards; and
of this fact an explanation will be attempted in a future
chapter. But the whole subject of the differences of
the sounds produced under different
states of the mind is so obscure, that
I have succeeded in throwing hardly
any light on it; and the remarks which
I have made, have but little signifi-

All the sounds hitherto noticed de-
pend on the respiratory organs; but
sounds produced by wholly different
means are likewise expressive. Rab-
bits stamp loudly on the ground as a
signal to their comrades; and if a man
knows how to do so properly, he may
on a quiet evening hear the rabbits
answering him all around. These ani-
mals, as well as some others, also stamp
on the ground when made angry. Por-
cupines rattle their quills and vibrate
their tails when angered; and one be-
haved in this manner when a live snake
was placed in its compartment. The
quills on the tail are very different from those on the
body: they are short, hollow, thin like a goose-quill,
with their ends transversely truncated, so that they are
open; they are supported on long, thin, elastic foot-
stalks. Wow, when the tail is rapidly shaken, these
hollow quills strike against each other and produce,
as I heard in the presence of Mr. Bartlett, a peculiar

Fio. 11. — Sound - pro-
ducing1 quillfl from tlj.o
tail of the Porcupine.

94:                     MEANS OF EXPRESSION            CHAP. IT.

continuous sound. We can, I think, understand why
porcupines have been provided, through the modifica-
tion of their protective spines, with this special sound-
producing instrument. They are nocturnal animals,
and if they scented or heard a prowling beast of prev,
it would be a great advantage to them in the dark to
give warning to their enemy what they were, and that
they were furnished with dangerous spines. The3T would
thus escape being attacked. They are, as I may add,
so fully conscious of the power of their weapons, that
when enraged they will charge backwards with, their
spines erected, yet still inclined backwards.

Many birds during their courtship produce diversi-
fied sounds by means of specially adapted feathers.
Storks, when excited, make a loud clattering noise with
their beaks, Some snakes produce a grating or rattling
noise. Many insects stridulate by rubbing together spe-
cially modified parts of their hard integuments. This
stridulation generally serves as a sexual charm, or call;
but it is likewise used to express different emotions.8
Every one who has attended to bees knows that their
humming changes when they are angry; and this serves
as a warning that there is danger of being stung. I have
made these few remarks because some writers have laid
so much stress on the vocal and respiratory organs as
having been specially adapted for expression., that it was
advisable to show that sounds otherwise produced serve
equally well for the same purpose.

Erection of the dermal appendages.-—Hardly any ex-
pressive movement is so general as the involuntary erec-
tion of the hairs, feathers and other dermal appendages;
for it is common throughout three of the great verte-

fi I i                                 8  I  have  given  some  details  on  this  snbject   in   my

fa »                            ' Descent of Man,' vol. L pp. 352, 3S4.


CHAP. IV.                     IN ANIMALS.                              95

brate classes. These appendages are erected under the
excitement of anger or terror; more especially when
these emotions are combined, or quickly succeed each
other. The action serves to make the animal appeal-
larger and more frightful to its enemies or rivals, and
is generally accompanied by various voluntary move-
ments adapted for the same purpose, and by the utter-
ance of savage sounds. Mr. Bartlett, who has had such
wide experience with animals of all kinds, does not doubt
that this is the case; but it is a different question whether
the power of erection was primarily acquired for this spe-
cial purpose.

I will first give a considerable body of facts showing
how general this action is with mammals, birds and rep-
tiles; retaining what I have to say in regard to man for
a future chapter. Mr. Sutton, the intelligent keeper
in the Zoological Gardens, carefully observed for me
the Chimpanzee and Orang; and he states that when
they are suddenly frightened, as by a thunderstorm, or
when they are made angry, as by being teased, their
hair becomes erect. I saw a chimpanzee who was alarmed
at the sight of a black coalheaver, and the hair rose all
over his body; he made little starts forward as if to at-
tack the man, without any real intention of doing so,
but with the hope, as the keeper remarked, of frighten-
ing him. The Gorilla, when enraged, is described by Mr.
Ford9 as having his crest of hair " erect and projecting
forward, his nostrils dilated, and his under lip thrown
down; at the same time uttering his characteristic yell,
designed, it would seem, to terrify his antagonists." I
saw the hair on the Anubis baboon, when angered bris-
tling along the back, from the neck to the loins, but not

0 As quoted in Huxley's * Evidence as to Man's Place
in Nature,' 1863, p. 52.




on the rump or other parts of the body. I took a stuffed
snake into the monkey-house, and the hair on several
of the species instantly became erect; especially on their
tails, as I particularly noticed with the Gercopi thews
nictitans. Brehm states 10 that the Midas oedipus (be-
longing to the American division) when excited erects
its mane, in order, as he adds, to make itself as frightful
as possible.

With the Carnivora the erection of the hair seems to
be almost universal, often accompanied by threatening
movements, the uncovering of the teeth and the utter-
ance of savage growls. In the Herpestes, I have seen
the hair on end over nearly the whole body, including
the tail; and the dorsal crest is erected in a conspicu-
ous manner by the Hyaena and Proteles. The enraged
lion erects his mane. The bristling of the hair along
the neck and back of the dog, and over the whole body
of the cat, especially on the tail, is familiar to every one.
With the cat it apparently occurs only under fear; with
the dog, under anger and fear; but not, as far as I have
observed, under abject fear, as when a dog is going to be
flogged by a severe gamekeeper. If, however, the dog
shows fight, as sometimes happens, up goes his hair.
I have often noticed that the hair of a clog is particu-
larly liable to rise, if he is half angry and half afraid,
as on beholding some object only indistinctly seen in
the dusk.

I have been assured by a veterinary surgeon that he
has often seen the hair erected on horses and cattle, on
which he had operated and was again going to operate.
When I showed a stuffed snake to a Peccary, the hair
rose in a wonderful manner along its back; and so it
does with the boar when enraged. An Elk which gored

10 Illust. TMerleben, 1864, B. i. s. 130.

CHAP. IV.                   Iff ANIMALS.                           97

a man to death in the United States, is described as first
brandishing his antlers, squealing with rage and stamp-
ing on the ground; " at length his hair was seen to rise
and stand on end/' and then he plunged forward to the
attack.11 The hair likewise becomes erect on goats, and,
as I hear from Mr. Blyth, on some Indian antelopes. I
have seen it erected on the hairy Ant-eater; and on the
Agouti, one of the Eodents. A female Bat,12 which
reared her young under confinement, when any one
looked into the cage " erected "the fur on her back, and
bit viciously at intruding fingers."

Birds belonging to all the chief Orders ruffle their
feathers when angry or frightened. Every one must
have seen two cocks, even quite young birds, preparing
to fight with erected neck-hackles; nor can these feath-
ers when erected serve as a means of defence, for cock-
fighters have found by experience that it is advantageous
to trim them. The male Ruff (Machetes pugnax) like-
wise erects its collar of feathers when fighting. When
a dog approaches a common hen with her chickens, she
spreads out her wings, raises her tail, ruffles all her feath-
ers, and looking as ferocious as possible, clashes at the
intruder. The tail is not always held in exactly the same
position; it is sometimes so much erected, that the cen-
tral feathers, as in the accompanying drawing, almost
touch the back. Swans, when angered, likewise raise
their wings and tail, and erect their feathers. They open
their beaks, and make by paddling little rapid starts for-
wards, against any one who approaches the water's edge
too closely. Tropic birds 13 when disturbed on their nests

11  The Hon. J. Caton, Ottawa Acad. of Nat. Sciences,
May, 18(58, pp. 36, 40.   For the Gapra JBgayrus, ' Land and
Water/ 1867, p. 37.

12 ' Land and Water,' July 20, 1867, p. 659.

18 Phaeton rubrivauda:  * ibis,1 vol. iii. 1861, p. 180.






are said not to fly away, but " merely to stick out their
feathers and scream/' The Barn-owl, when approached
" instantly swells out its plumage, extends its wings and
tail, hisses and clacks its mandibles with force and rapid-
ity." 14 So do other kinds of owls. Hawks, as I am

FIG. 12.—Hen driving away a dog from her chickens.
Drawn from life by Mr. Wood.

informed by Mr. Jenner Weir, likewise ruffle their feath-
ers, and spread out their wings and tail under similar
circumstances. Some kinds of parrots erect their feath-
ers; and I have seen tliis action in the Cassowary, when
angered at the sight of an Ant-eater. Young cuckoos
in the nest, raise their feathers, open their mouths
widely, and make themselves as frightful as possible.

14 On the Strix ftammea, Audubon, ' Ornithological Bi-
ography,' 1864, vol. ii. p. 407. I have observed other cases
in the Zoological Gardens.




Small birds,, also, as I hear from Mr. Weir, such as
various finches, buntings and warblers, when angry,

FIG. 13.—Swan driving- away an intruder.   Drawn from life by Mr. Wood.

ruffle all their feathers, or only those round the neck;
or they spread out their wings and tail-feat tiers. With
their plumage in this state, they rush at each other with
open beaks and threatening gestures. Mr. Weir con-
cludes from his large experience that the erection of the
feathers is caused much more by anger than by fear, lie
gives as an instance a hybrid goldfinch, of a most irasci-
ble disposition,, which when approached too closely by
a servant, instantly assumes the appearance of a ball of
ruffled feathers. He believes that birds when frightened,
as a general rule, closely ad press all their feathers, and
their consequently diminished size is often astonishing.










il /

As soon as they recover from their fear or surprise,, the
first thing which they do is to shake out their feathers.
The best instances of this adpression of the feathers and
apparent shrinking of the body from fear, which Mr.
Weir has noticed, has been in the quail and grass-parra-
keet.15 The habit is intelligible in these birds from
their being accustomed, when in danger, either to squat
on the ground or to sit motionless on a branch, so as to
escape detection. Though, with birds, anger may be
the chief and commonest cause of the erection of the
feathers, it is probable that young ctiekftos when looked
at in the nest, and a hen with her chickens when ap-
proached by a dog, feel at least some terror. Mr. Teget-
meier informs me that with game-cocks, the erection of
the feathers on the head has long been recognized in the
cock-pit as a sign of cowardice.

The males of some lizards, when fighting together
during their courtship, expand their throat pouches or
frills, and erect their dorsal crests.16 But Dr. Gunther
does not believe that they can erect their separate spines
or scales.

We thus see how generally throughout the two higher
vertebrate classes, and with some reptiles, the dermal
appendages are erected under the influence of anger and
fear. The movement is effected, as we know from Kolli-
ker's interesting discovery, by the contraction of minute,
unstriped, involuntary muscles,17 often called arrectores
pili) which are attached to the capsules of the separate

15 fifelopsittacus undulatus. See an account of its habits
by Gould, 'Handbook of Birds of Australia,7 1865, vol. ii.
p. 82.

18 See, for instance, the account which I have given
(* Descent of Man,' vol. ii. p. 32) of an Anolis and Draco.

17 These muscles are described in his well-known
works. I am greatly indebted to this distinguished ob-
server for having- given me in a letter information on
this same subject.


CHAP. IV.                      IN ANIMALS.                              101

hairs, feathers, &c. By the contraction of these muscles
the hairs can be instantly erected, as we see in a dog,
being at the same time drawn a little out of their sockets;
they are afterwards quickly depressed. The vast num-
ber of these minute muscles over the whole body of a
hairy quadruped is astonishing. The erection of the hair
is, however, aided in some cases, as with that on the head
of a man, by the striped and voluntary muscles of the
underlying panniculus carnosus. It is by the action of
these latter muscles, that the hedgehog erects its spines.
It appears, also, from the researches of Leydig 1S and
others, that striped fibres extend from the panniculus
to some of the larger hairs, such as the vibriss& of cer-
tain quadrupeds. The arrectores pili contract not only
under the above emotions, but from the application of
cold to the surface. I remember that my mules and dogs,
brought from a lower and warmer country, after spend-
ing a night on the bleak Cordillera, had the hair all over
their bodies as erect as under the greatest terror. We see
the same action in our own goose-skin during the chill
before a fever-fit. Mr. Lister has also found,10 that tick-
ling a neighbouring part of the skin causes the erection
and protrusion of the hairs.

From these facts it is manifest that the erection of
the dermal appendages is a reflex action, independent
of the will; and this action must be looked at, when,
occurring under the influence of anger or fear, not as a
power acquired for the sake of some advantage, but
as an incidental result, at least to a large extent, of the
sensorium being affected. The result, in as far as it is

18 4 Lehrbueh dor Histologie des Menschen,7 1857, s.
82. T owe to Prof. W. Turner's kindness an extract from
this work.

10 * Quarterly Journal of Microscopical Science/ 1853,
vol. i. p. 262.

JU* -





incidental, may "be compared with the profuse sweating
from an agony of pain or terror. Nevertheless, it is re-
markable how slight an excitement often suffices to cause
the hair to become erect; as when two dogs pretend to
fight together in play. We have, also, seen in a large
number of animals, belonging to widely distinct classes,
that the erection of the hair or feathers is almost always
accompanied by various voluntary movements—by
threatening gestures, opening the mouth, iincovering the
teeth, spreading out of the wings and tail by birds, and
by the utterance of harsh sounds; and the purpose of
these voluntary movements is unmistakable. Therefore
it seems hardly credible that the co-ordinated erection of
the dermal appendages, by which the animal is made to
appear larger and more terrible to its enemies or rivals,
should be altogether an incidental and purposeless result
of the disturbance of the sensorium. This seems almost
as incredible as that the erection by the hedgehog of its
spines, or of the quills by the porcupine, or of the orna-
mental plumes by many birds during their courtship,
should all be purposeless actions.

We here encounter a great difficulty. How can the
contraction of the unstriped and involuntary arrectores
pili have been co-ordinated with that of various volun-
tary muscles for the same special purpose? If we coxild
believe that"the arrectores primordially had been volun-
tary muscles, and had since lost their stripes and become
involuntary, the case would be comparatively simple.
I am not, however, aware that there is any evidence in
favour of this view; although the reversed transition
would not have presented any great difficulty., as the
voluntary muscles are in an unstriped condition in the
embryos of the higher animals, and in the larvae of some
crustaceans. Moreover in the deeper layers of the skin
of adult birds, the muscular network is, according to

. IY.                        IN" ANIMALS.                              103

•t-*eydig,20 in a transitional condition; the fibres exhibit-
only indications of transverse striation.
Another explanation seems possible. We may admit
originally the arrectores pili were slightly acted on
a direct manner, under the influence of rage and
r, by the disturbance of the nervous system; as is
the case with our so-called goose-skin be-
fore a fever-fit. Animals have been repeatedly excited
rage and terror during many generations; and con-
tly the direct effects of the disturbed nervous
on the dermal appendages will almost certainly
been increased through habit and through the tend-
ency of nerve-force to pass readily along accustomed
oTaannels. We shall find this view of the force of habit
strikingly confirmed in a future chapter, where it will
t>e shown that the hair of the insane is affected in an
extraordinary manner, owing to their repeated accesses
of fury and terror. As soon as with animals the power
of erection had thus been strengthened or increased,
they must often have seen the hairs or feathers erected
ixx rival and enraged males, and the bulk of their bodies
tlans increased. In this case it appears possible that they
might have wished to make themselves appear larger and                       \

~nn.ore terrible to their enemies, by voluntarily assuming                       *'

a,   threatening  attitude and uttering harsh cries; such                       f.

attitudes and utterances after a time becoming through
ha/bit instinctive.    In this manner actions performed                       ^

Toy the contraction of voluntary muscles might have been                       v

combined for the same special purpose with those ef-                       |

footed by involuntary muscles.   It is even possible that                       i

animals/ when  excited and dimly conscious of some                       ^

change in the state of their hair, might act on it by re-                       ''{;

;peated exertions of their attention and will; for we have                       \:

30 ' LelxrbTich. der Histologie,' 1857, s. 82.                                          $





t      ?wp


reason to believe that the will is able to influence in an
obscure manner the action of some unstriped or involun-
tary muscles, as in the period of the peristaltic move-
ments of the intestines, and in the contraction of the
bladder. Nor must we overlook the part which varia-
tion and natural selection may have played; for the
males which succeeded in making themselves appear the
most terrible to their rivals, or to their other enemies,
if not of overwhelming power, will on an average have
left more offspring to inherit their characteristic quali-
ties, whatever these may be and however first acquired,
than have other males.

The inflation of the body, and other means of excit-
ing fear in an enemy.—Certain Amphibians and Rep-
tiles, which either have no spines to erect, or no muscles
by which they can be erected, enlarge themselves when
alarmed or angry by inhaling air. This is well known
to be the case with toads and frogs. The latter animal
is made, in ^Esop's fable of the ' Ox and the Frog/ to
blow itself up from vanity and envy until it burst. This
action must have been observed during the most ancient
times, as, according to Mr. Hensleigh Wedgwood,21 the
word toad expresses in all the languages of Europe the
habit of swelling. It has been observed with some of the
exotic species in the Zoological Gardens; and Dr. Giin-
ther believes that it is general throughout the group.
Judging from analogy, the primary purpose probably
was to make the body appear as large and frightful as
possible to an enemy; but another, and perhaps more im-
portant secondary advantage is thus gained. When frogs
are seized by snakes, which are their chief enemies, they
enlarge themselves wonderfully; so that if the snake be
of small size, as Dr. Giinther informs me, it cannot swal-
low the frog, which thus escapes being devoured.

21 'Dictionary of English Etymology,' p. 403.

CHAP. IV.                        IN AISTIMALS.                               105

Chameleons and some other lizards innate themselves
when angry. Thus a species inhabiting Oregon, the
Tapaya Douglasiiy is slow in its movements and does
not bite, but has a ferocious aspect; "when'irritated
it springs in a most threatening manner at anything
pointed at it, at the same time opening its mouth wide
and hissing audibly, after which it inflates its body, and
shows other marks of anger." 22

Several kinds of snakes likewise innate themselves
when irritated. The puff-adder (Glotho arietans) is re-
markable in this respect; but I believe, after carefully
watching these animals, that they do not act thus for
the sake of increasing their apparent bulk, but simply
for inhaling a large supply of air, so as to produce their
surprisingly loud, harsh, and prolonged hissing sound.
The Cobras-de-capello, when irritated, enlarge them-                         \

selves a little, and hiss moderately; but, at the same
time they lift their heads aloft, and dilate by means of
their elongated anterior ribs, the skin on each side of
the neck into a large flat disk,—the so-called hood. With
their widely opened mouths, they then assume a terrific
aspect. The benefit thus derived ought to be consider-
able, in order to compensate for the somewhat lessened
rapidity (though this is still great) with which, when di-                         < J

lated, they can strike at their enemies or prey; on. the
same principle that a broad, thin piece of wood cannot
be moved through the air so quickly as a small round
stick. An innocuous snake,' the Tropidonotus macropli-
tlialmus, an inhabitant of India, likewise dilates its neck
when irritated; and consequently is often mistaken for                         "

its compatriot, the deadly Cobra.23 This resemblance
perhaps serves as some protection to the Tropidonotus.

22 See the account of the habits of this animal by Dr.

Cooper, as quoted in ' Nature,' April 27, 1871, p. 512.                                        $

28 Dr. Gunther, * Reptiles of British India,' p. 262.                                           /

8                                                                                        ;

v* 1l

? 1





Another innocuous species, the Dasypeltis of South Afri-
ca, blows itself out, distends its neck, hisses and darts
at an intruder.24 Many other snakes hiss under similar
circumstances. They also rapidly vibrate their protruded
tongues; and this may aid in increasing their terrific

Snakes possess other means of producing sounds
besides hissing. Many years ago I observed in South
America that a venomous Trigonocephalus, when dis-
turbed, rapidly vibrated the end of its tail, which strik-
ing against the dry grass and twigs produced a rattling
noise that could be distinctly heard at the distance of
six fect.2n • The deadly and fierce EcMs carinata of India
produces " a curious prolonged, almost hissing sound "
in a very different manner, namely by rubbing " the
sides of the folds of its body against each other/-' whilst
the head remains in almost the same position. The
scales on the sides, and not on other parts of -the bod}',
are strongly keeled, with the keels toothed like a saw;
and as the coilcd-np animal rubs its sides together, these
grate against each other.20 Lastly, we have the well-
known case of the Rattle-snake. He who has merely
shaken the rattle of a dead snake, can form no just idea
of the sound produced %y the living animal. Professor
Shaler states that it is indistinguishable from that made
by the male of a large Cicada (an ITomoptcrous insect),
which inhabits the same district.27 In the Zoological

21 Mr. ,T. Mansel Weale, ' Nature,' April 27, 1871, p. 50R.

35 ' .Tom-rial, of Ileson.rc.hes during' the Voyag-p. of the
" Beag-le," ' 1845, p. 96. T have compared the rattling- thus
produced with that of the Rattle-snake.

20 See the account by Dr. Anderson, Proc. Zool. Soc.
1871, p. 196.

" The ' American Natiiralist,' Jan. 1872, p. 32. T regret
that I cannot follow Prof. Shaler in believing- that the
rattle has "been developed, by the aid of natural selection,
for the sake of producing- sounds which deceive and at-
tract birds, so that they may serve as prey to the snake.

CHAP. IV.                      IN ANIMALS.                              107

Gardens, when the rattle-snakes and puff-adders were
greatly excited at the same time, I was much struck at
the similarity of the sound produced by them; and al-
though that made by the rattle-snake is louder and
shriller than the hissing of the puff-adder, yet when
standing at some yards distance I could scarcely distin-
guish the two. For whatever purpose the sound is pro-
duced by the one species, I can hardly doubt that it serves
for the same purpose in the other species; and I conclude
from the threatening gestures made at the same time
by many snakes, that their hissing,—the rattling of the
rattle-snake and of the tail of the Trigonocephalus,—
the grating of the scales of the Echis,—and the dilata-
tion of the hood of the Cobra,—all subserve the same
end, namely,, to make them appear terrible to their ene-

It seems at first a probable conclusion that venom-
ous snakes, such as the foregoing, from being already
so well defended by their poison-fangs, would never be
attacked by any enemy; and consequently would have

I do not, however, wish to doubt that the sounds may
occasionally sxibserve this end. But the conclusion at
which I have arrived, viz. that the rattling- serves as a
warning1 to would-be devourers, appears to me much more
probable, as it connects together various classes of facts.
If this snake had acquired its rattle and the habit of
rattling1, for the sake of attracting1 prey, it does not seem
probable that it woiild have invariably "used its instru-
ment when angered or disturbed. Prof. Shaler takes
nearly the same view as I do of the manner of develop-
ment of the rattle; and I have always held this opinion
since observing, the Trigonocephalus in South America.

28 From the accounts lately collected, and given in
the ' Journal of the Linnean Society,' by Mrs. Barber,
on the habits of the snakes of South Africa; and from
the accounts published by several writers, for instance
by Lawson, of the rattle-snake in North America,—It
does not seem improbable that the terrific appearance
of snakes and the sounds produced by them, may like-
wise serve in procuring prey, by paralysing, or as it is
sometimes called fascinating, the smaller animals.




no need to excite additional terror. But this is far from
being the case, for they are largely preyed on in all quar-
ters of the world by many animals. It is well known
that pigs are employed in the United States to clear dis-
tricts infested with rattle-snakes, which they do most
effectually.29 In England the hedgehog attacks and de-
vours the viper. In India, as I hear from Dr. Jerdon,
several kinds of hawks, and at least one mammal, the
Herpestes, kill cobras and other venomous species;30
and so it is in South Africa. Therefore it is by no means
improbable that any sounds or signs by which the venom-
ous species could instantly make themselves recognized
as dangerous, would be of more service to them than to
the innocuous species which would not be able, if at-
tacked, to inflict any real injury.

Having said thus much about snakes, I am tempted
to add a few remarks on the means by which the rattle
of the rattle-snake was probably developed. Various
animals, including some lizards, either curl or vibrate
their tails when excited. This is the case with many
kinds of snakes.31 In the Zoological Gardens, an in-

20 See the account by Dr. 11. Brown, in Proc. Zool. Soc.
1871, p. 39. He says that as soon as a pig sees a snake it
rushes upon it; and a snake makes oft' immediately on
the. appearance of a pig-.

ao Dr. Giinther remarks ('Reptiles of British India,' p.
340) on the destruction of cobras by the ichneumon or
herpestes, and whilst the cobras are young- by the jungle-
fowl. It is well known that the peacock also eagerly kills

81 Prof. Cope enumerates a number of kinds in his
' Method of Creation of Organic Types,' read before the
American Phil. Soc., December 15th, 1871, p. 20. Prof.
Cope takes the same view as I do of the use of the ges-
tures and sounds made by snakes. I briefly alluded to
this subject in the last edition of my ' Origin of Species.'
Since the passages in the text above have been printed,
I have been pleased to find that Mr. Henderson (' The
American. Naturalist,' May, 1872, p. 260) also takes a simi-
lar view of the use of the rattle, namely " in preventing
an attack from, being made."

CHAP. IV.                     IN ANIMALS.                -            109

nocuous species, trie Goronella Sayi, vibrates its tail so
rapidly that it becomes almost invisible. The Trigono-
cephalus, before alluded to, has the same habit; and                             "I

the extremity of its tail is a little enlarged, or ends                             '/I

in a bead.   In the Laehesis, which is so closely allied                             ] i

to the rattle-snake that it was placed by Linnaeus in                             '*

the same genus, the tail ends in a single, large, lancet-                               I

shaped point or scale.   With some snakes the skin, as                             }

Professor Shaler remarks, " is more imperfectly detached                     ,       ?

from the region about the tail than at other parts of the *                         i

body/' . Now if we suppose that the end of the tail of
some ancient American species was enlarged, and was
covered by a single large scale, this could hardly have

been cast off at the successive moults.   In this case it                            v

would have been permanently retained, and at each                            ^

period of growth, as the snake grew larger, a new scale,                             I

larger than the last, would have been formed above it,                            , *

and would likewise have been retained.   The foundation                            I"

for the development of a rattle would thus have been                            i

laid; and it would have been habitually used, if the spe-                            }»

cies, like so many others, vibrated its tail whenever it was                            l/

irritated.   That the rattle has since been specially devel-                            t

oped to serve as an efficient sound-producing instrument,                            >

there can hardly be a doubt; for even the vertebra} in-                            |*"

eluded within the extremity of the tail have-been altered                            !*

in shape and cohere.   But there is no greater improb-                            J

ability in various structures, such as the rattle of the                            -1
rattle-snake,—the lateral scales of the Echis,—the neck                             |

with the included ribs of the Cobra,—and the whole body                            ft

of the puff-adder,—having been modified for the sake                            ffr

of warning and frightening away their enemies, than in                           -11

a bird, namely, the wonderful Secretary-hawk (Gypo-                            Jl

geranus) having had its whole frame modified for the                            ft

sake of killing snakes with impunity.   It is highly prob-                           "^

able, judging from what we have before seen, that this                            "^


bird would ruffle its feathers whenever it attacked a
snake; and it is certain that the Herpestes, when it
eagerly rushes to attack a snake, erects the hair all over
its body, and especially that on its tail.82 We have also
seen that some porcupines, when angered or alarmed at
the sight of a snake, rapidly vibrate their tails, thus pro-
ducing a peculiar sound by the striking'together of the
holloAV quills. So that here both the attackers and the
attacked endeavour to make themselves as dreadful as
possible to each other; and both possess for this purpose
specialised means, which, oddly enough, are nearly the
same in some of these cases. Finally we can see that if,
on the one hand, those individual snakes, which were
best able to frighten aAvay their enemies, escaped best
from being devoured; and if, on the other hand, those
individuals of the attacking enemy survived in larger
numbers which were the best fitted for the dangerous
task of killing and devouring venomous snakes;—then
in the one case as in the other, beneficial variations, siip-
posing the characters in question to vary, would com-
monly have been preserved through the survival of the

The Drawing lack and pressure of the Ears to the
Head.—The ears through their movements are highly
expressive in many animals; but in some, such as man,
the higher apes, and many ruminants, they fail in this
respect. A slight difference in position serves to express
in the plainest manner a different state of mind, as we
may daily see in the dog; but we arc here concerned
only with the ears being drawn closely backwards and
pressed to the head. A savage frame of mind is thus
shown, bat only in the case of those animals which fight

82 Mr. des Vceux, in Proc. Zool. Soc. 1871, p. 3.

CHAP. IV.                     IN ANIMALS.         .                    HI

with their teeth; and the care which they take to pre-
vent their ears being seized by their antagonists, accounts
for this position. Consequently, through habit and as-
sociation, whenever they feel slightly savage, or pretend
in their play to be savage, their ears are drawn back.
That this is the true explanation may be inferred from
the relation which exists in very many animals between
their manner of fighting and the retraction of their ears.

All the Carnivora fight with their canine teeth, and
all, as far as I have observed, draw their ears back when
feeling savage. This may be continually seen with dogs
when fighting in earnest, and with puppies fighting in
play. The movement is different from the falling
down and slight drawing back of the ears, when a dog
feels pleased and is caressed by his master. The retrac-
tion of the cars may likewise be seen in kittens fighting
together in their play, and in full-grown eats when really
savage, as before illustrated in fig. 9 (p. 58). Although
their ears are thus to a large extent protected, yet they
often get much torn in old male cats during their mu-
tual battles. The same movement is very striking in
tigers, leopards, &c., whilst growling over their food in
menageries. The lynx has remarkably long ears; and
their retraction, when one of these animals is approached
in its cage, is very conspicuous, and is eminently expres-
sive of its savage disposition. Even one of the Eared
Seals, the Otariapusilla,which has very small ears, draws
them backwards, when it makes a savage rush at the legs
of its keeper.

When horses fight together they use their incisors for
biting, and their fore-legs for striking, much more than
they do their hind-legs for kicking backwards. This
has been observed when stallions have broken loose and
have fought together, and may likewise be inferred from
the kind of wounds which they inflict on each other.


Every one recognizes the vicious appearance which the
drawing back of the ears gives to a horse. This move-
ment is very different from that of listening to a sound
behind. If an ill-tempered horse in a stall is inclined
to kick backwards, his ears are retracted from habit,
though he has no intention or power to bite. But when
a horse throws up both hind-legs in play, as when enter-
ing an open field, or when just touched by the whip, he
does not generally depress his cars, for he does not then
feel vicious. Guanacoes fight savagely with their teeth;
and they must do so frequently, for I found the hides
of several which I shot in Patagonia deeply scored. So
do camels; and both these animals, when savage, draw
their ears closely backwards. Gaianacoes, as I have no-
ticed, when not intending to bite, but merely to spit their
offensive saliva from a distance at an intruder, retract
their ears. Even the hippopotamus, when threatening
with its widely-open enormous mouth a comrade, draws
back its small ears, just like a horse.

'Now what a contrast is presented between the fore-
going animals and cattle, sheep, or goats, which never
use their teeth in fighting, and never draw back their
ears when enraged! Although sheep and goats appear
such placid animals, the males often join in furious con-
tests. As deer form a closely related family, and as I
did not know that, they ever fought with their teeth, I
was much surprised at the account given by Major Ross
King of the Moose-deer in Canada. He says, when
"two males chance to meet, laying back their ears and
gnashing their teeth together, they rush at each other
with appalling fury/' 33 But Mr. Bartlett informs me
that some species of deer fight savagely with their teeth,

83 ' The Sportsman and Naturalist in Canada,' 1866, p. 53.
p. 53.

CHAP. IV.      '               IN ANIMALS.

so that the drawing back of the ears by the moose ac-
cords with our rule. Several kinds of kangaroos, kept
in the Zoological Gardens, fight by scratching with their
fore-feet and by kicking with their hind-legs; but they
never bite each other, and the keepers have never seen
them draw back their ears when angered. Rabbits fight
chiefly by kicking and scratching, but they likewise bite
each other; and I have known one to bite off half the
tail of its antagonist. At the commencement of their
battles they lay back their ears, but afterwards, as they
bound over and kick each other, they keep their ears
erect, or move them much about.

Mr. Bartlett watched a wild boar quarrelling rather
savagely with his sow; and both had their mouths open
and their ears drawn backwards. But this does not
appear to be a common action with domestic pigs when
quarrelling. Boars fight together by striking upwards
with their tusks; and Mr. Bartlett doubts whether they
then draw back their ears. Elephants, which in like
manner fight with their tusks, do not retract their ears,
but, -on the contrary, erect them when rushing at each
other or at an enemy.

The rhinoceroses in the Zoological Gardens fight with
their nasal horns, and have never been seen to attempt
biting each other except in play; and the keepers are
convinced that they do not draw back their ears, like
horses and dogs, when feeling savage. The following
statement, therefore, by Sir S. Baker34 is inexplicable,
namely, that a rhinoceros,which he shot in North Africa,
" had no ears; they had been bitten off close to the head
by another of the same species while fighting; and this
mutilation is by no means uncommon."

Lastly, with respect to monkeys.   Some kinds, which

.......                                                            :

84 ' The Nile Tributaries of Abyssinia,' 1867, p. 443.




have moveahle ears, and which fight with their teeth —
for instance the Gercopitliecus nibei — draw back their
cars when irritated just like dogs; and they then have
a very spiteful appearance. Other kinds,, as the Inuus
ecaudatus, apparently do not thus act. Again,, other
kinds — and this is a great anomaly in comparison with
most other animals — retract their ears, show their teeth,
and jabber, when they are pleased by being caressed.
I observed this in two or three species of Macacus, and
in the Qynopitliecus niyer. This expression, owing to
our familiarity with dogs, would never be recognized
as one of joy or pleasure by those unacquainted with

Erection of the Ears. — This movement requires hard-
ly any notice. All animals which have the power of
freely moving their ears, when they are startled, or when
they closely observe any object, direct their ears to the
point towards which they are looking, in order to hear
any sound from this quarter. At the same time they
generally raise their heads, as all their organs of sense
are there situated, and some of the smaller animals rise
on their hind-legs. Even those kinds which squat on
the ground' or instantly flee away to avoid danger, gen-
erally act momentarily in this manner, in order to ascer-
tain the source and nature of the clanger. The head
being raised, with erected ears and eyes directed for-
wards, gives an unmistakable expression of close atten-
tion to any animal.

CHAP. "V.





The Dog, various expressive movements of—Cats—Horses
—Ruminants—Monkeys, their expression of joy and
affection—Of pain—Ang'er—Astonishment, and Terror.

Tfie Dog.—I have already described (figs. 5 and 7)
the appearance of a dog approaching another dog with
hostile intentions, namely, with' erected ears, eyes in-,
tently directed forwards, hair on the neck and hack
bristling, gait remarkably stiff, with the tail upright
and rigid. So familiar is this appearance to us, that
an angry man is sometimes said " to have his back up."
Of the above points, the stiff gait and upright tail alone
require further discussion. Sir 0. Bell remarks l that,
when a tiger or wolf is struck by its keeper and is sud-
denly roused to ferocity, " every muscle is in tension,
and the limbs are in an attitude of strained exertion,
prepared to spring." This tension of the muscles and
consequent stiff gait may be accounted for on the prin-
ciple of associated habit, for anger has continually led
to fierce struggles, and consequently to all the muscles
of the body having been violently exerted. There is also
reason to suspect that the muscular system requires some
short preparation, or "some degree of in nervation, "before
being brought into strong action. My own sensations

1 ' The Anatomy of Expression,' 1844, p. 190.




lead me to this inference; but I cannot discover that it
is a conclusion admitted by physiologists. Sir J. Paget,
however,, informs me that Avhen muscles are suddenly
contracted with the greatest force, without any prepara-
tion, they are liable to be ruptured, as when a man slips
unexpectedly; but that this rarely occurs when an
action, however violent, is deliberately performed.

With respect to the upright position of the tail, it
seems to depend (but whether this is really the case I
know not) on the elevator muscles being more powerful
than the depressors, so that when all the muscles of the
hinder part of the body are in a state of tension, the tail
is raised. A dog in cheerful spirits, and trotting before
his master with high, elastic steps, generally carries his
tail aloft, though it is not held nearly so stiffly as when
he is angered. A horse when first turned out into an
open field, may be seen to trot with long elastic strides,
the head and fail being held high aloft. Even cows when
they frisk about from pleasure, throw up their tails
in a ridiculous fashion. So it is with various animals
in the Zoological Gardens. The position of tlic tail,
however, in certain cases, is determined by special
circumstances; thus as soon as a horse breaks into a
gallop, at full speed, he always lowers his tail, so
that as little resistance as possible may be offered to the

When a dog is on the point of springing on his an-
tagonist, he titters a savage growl; the ears are pressed
closely backwards, and the upper lip (fig. 14) is retracted
out of the way of his teeth, especially of his canines.
These movements may be observed with dogs and pup-
pies in their play. But if a dog gets really savage in his
play, his expression immediately changes. This, how-
ever, is simply due to the lips and ears being drawn back
with much greater energy. If a dog only snarls at an-



other, the lip is generally retracted on one side alone,
namely towards his enemy.

The movements of a dog whilst exhibiting affection
towards his master were described (figs. 6 and 8) in our
second chapter. These consist in the head and whole
body being lowered and thrown into flexuous movements,
with the tail extended and wagged from side to side.
The ears fall down and are drawn somewhat backwards,
which causes the eyelids to be elongated, arid alters the

FIG. 14.—Head of snarling Dog.   From life, by Mr. Wood.

whole appearance of the face. The lips hang loosely,
and the hair remains smooth. All these movements or
gestures are explicable, as I believe, from their stand-
ing in complete antithesis to those naturally assumed
by a savage dog under a directly opposite state of mind.
When a man merely speaks to, or just notices, his dog,




ll •-$

we see the last vestige of these movements in a slight wag
of the tail, Avithout any other movement of the body, and
Avitliout even the ears being lowered. Dogs also exhibit
their affection by desiring to rub against their masters,
and to be rubbed or patted by them.

Gratiolet explains the above gestures of affection in
the folloAving manner: and the reader can judge whether
the explanation appears satisfactory. Speaking of ani-
mals in general, including the dog, lie says,2 " C'est ton-
jours la partie la plus sensible de leiirs corps qui re-
cherche lea caresses ou les donne. Lorsque toute la
longueur des flancs et du corps est sensible, Familial ser-
pente et rampe sous les caresses; et ces oiidulations se
propageant le long dcs muscles analogues des segments
jusqu'aux extremites de la colonne vertdbralc, la queue
se ploie et s'agite." Further on, he adds, that dogs, when
feeling affectionate, lower their ears in order to exclude
all sounds, so that their whole attention may be concen-
trated on the caresses of their master!

Dogs have another and striking way of exhibiting
their affection, namely, by licking the hands or faces of
their masters. They sometimes lick other dogs, and
then it is always their chops. I have also seen clogs lick-
ing cats Avith whom they were friends. This habit prob-
ably originated in the females carefully licking their
puppies — the clearest object of their love — for the sake
of cleansing them. They also often give their puppies,
after a short absence, a few cursory licks, apparently
from affection. Thus the habit will have become asso-
ciated with the emotion of love, however it may after-
wards be aroused. It is noAv so firmly inherited or in-
nate, that it is transmitted equally to both sexes. A
female terrier of mine lately had her puppies destroyed,

2 ' De la Physionomie,' 1865, pp. 187, 218.




and though at all times a very affectionate creature, I was
much struck with the manner in which she then tried
to satisfy her instinctive maternal love by expending it
on me; and her desire to lick my hands rose to an insati-
able passion.

The same principle probably explains why dogs,
when feeling affectionate, like rubbing against their
masters and being rubbed or patted by them, for from
the nursing of their puppies, contact with a beloved ob-
ject has become firmly associated in their minds with the
emotion of love.

The feeling of affection of a clog towards his master
is combined with a strong sense of submission., which is
akin to fear. Hence dogs not only lower their bodies and
crouch a little as they approach their masters, but some-
times throw themselves on the ground with their bellies
upwards. This is a movement as completely opposite
as is possible to any show of resistance. I formerly pos-
sessed a large dog who was not at all afraid to fight with
other dogs; but a wolf-like shepherd-dog in the neigh-
bourhood, though not ferocious and not so powerful as
mv dog, had a strange influence over him. When they
met on the road, my dog used to run to meet Mm, with
his tail partly tucked in between his legs and hair not
erected; and then he would throw himself on the
ground, belly upwards. By this action he seemed to say
more plainly than by words, " Behold, I am your slave."

A pleasurable and excited state of mind, associated
•with affection, is exhibited by some dogs in a very pecul-
iar manner; namely, by grinning. This was noticed
long ago by Somerville, who says,

" And with a courtly grin, the fawning hound
Salutes thee cow'ring, his wide op'ning nose
Upward he curls, and his large sloe-back eyes
Melt in. soft blandishments, and hnmble joy.'

The Chase, book i.




Sir W. Scott's famous Scotch greyhound, Maida, had
this habit, and it is common with terriers. I have also
seen it in a Spitz and in a sheep-dog. Mr. Riviere, who
has particularly attended to this expression, informs me
that it is rarely displayed in a perfect manner, but is quite
common in a lesser degree. The upper lip during the
act of grinning is retracted, as in snarling, so that the
canines are exposed, and the ears are drawn backwards;
but the general appearance of the animal clearly shows
that anger is not felt. Sir C. Bell3 remarks " Dogs, in
their expression of fondness, have a slight eversion of
the lips, and grin and sniff amidst their gambols, in a
way that resembles laughter." Some persons speak of
the grin as a smile, but if it had been really a smile, we
should see a similar, though more pronounced, move-
ment of the lips and ears, when dogs utter their hark of
joy; but this is not the case, although a bark of joy often
follows a grin. On the other hand, clogs, when playing
with their comrades or masters, almost always pretend
to bite each other; and they then retract, though not
encrgeticalty, their lips and ears. Hence I suspect that
there is a tendency in some dogs, whenever they feel live-
ly pleasure combined with affection, to act through habit
and association on the same muscles, as in playfully bit-
ing each other, or their masters' hands.

I have described, in the second chapter, the gait and
appearance of a dog when cheerful, and the marked
antithesis presented by the same animal when dejected
and disappointed, with his head, ears, body, tail, and
chops drooping, and eyes dull. Under the expectation
of any great pleasure, dogs bound and jump about in
an extravagant manner, and bark for joy. The tendency
to bark under this state of mind is inherited, or runs in

* ' The Anatomy of Expression,' 1844, p. 140.

CHAP. V.                              DOGS.

the "breed: greyhounds rarely bark, whilst the Spitz-dog
"barks so incessantly on starting for a walk with his mas-
ter that he becomes a nuisance.

An agony of pain is expressed by dogs in nearly the                            ^

same way as by many other animals, namely, by howl-                            <|

ing, writhing, and contortions of the whole body.                                     -I

Attention is shown by the head being raised, with                            i

the ears erected, and eyes intently directed towards the                            L

object or quarter under observation.    If it lie a sound                            f)

and the source is not known, the head is often turned                            |

oMiquely from side to side in a most significant manner,                            f1
apparently in order to judge with more exactness from

what point the sound proceeds.   But I have seen a dog                            i

greatly surprised at a new noise, turning his head to one                            y

side  through habit, though he  clearly perceived  the                             t1

source of the noise.   Dogs, as formerly remarked, when                             it

their attention is in any way aroused, whilst watching                            '

some object, or attending to some sound, often lift up                             I

one paw (fig. 4) and keep it doubled up, as if to make                             t

a slow and stealthy approach.                                                                     r

A dog under extreme terror will throw himself down,                            i


howl, and void his excretions; but the hair, I believe,                             j

does not become erect unless some anger is felt. I have
seen a clog much terrified at a band of musicians who                             |

•\vere playing loudly outside the house, with every mus-
cle of his body trembling, with his heart palpitating so
quickly that the beats could hardly be counted, and pant-
ing for breath with widely open mouth, in the same
manner as a terrified man does. Yet this dog had not
exerted himself; he had only wandered slowly and rest-
lessly aloout the room, and the day was cold.

Even a very slight degree of fear is invariably shown
by the tail being tucked in between the legs.   This tuck-
ing in of the tail is accompanied by the ears being drawn
"backwards; but they are not pressed closely to the head,

122                   SPECIAL EXPBESSIONS:              CHAP. V.

as in snarling, and they are not lowered, as when a dog
is pleased or affectionate. When two young dogs chase
each other in play, the one that runs away always keeps
his tail tucked inwards. So it is when a dog, in the high-
est spirits, careers like a mad creature round and round
his master in circles,, or in figures of eight. lie then
acts as if another dog were chasing him. This curious
kind of play, which must be familiar to every one who
has attended to dogs, is particularly apt to be excited,,
after the animal has been a little startled or frightened,
as by his master suddenly jumping out on him in the
dusk. In this case, as well as when two young dogs arc
chasing each other in play, it appears as if the one that
runs away was afraid, of the other catching him by the
tail; but as far as I can find out, dogs very rarely catch
each other in this manner. I asked a gentleman, who
had kept foxhounds all his life, and he applied to other
experienced sportsmen, whether they had ever seen
hounds thus seize a fox; but they never had. li appears
that when a dog is chased, or when in danger of being
struck behind, or of anything falling on him, in all these
cases he wishes to withdraw as quickly as possible his
whole hind-quarters, and that from some sympathy or
connection between the muscles, the tail is then drawn
closely inwards.

A similarly connected movement between the hind-
quarters and the tail may be observed in the hymn a.
Mr. Bartlett informs me that when two of these animals
fight together, they are mutually conscious of the won-
derful power of each other's jaws, and are extremely
cautious. They well know that if one of their legs were
seized, the bone would instantly be crushed into atoms;
hence they approach each other kneeling, with their legs
turned as much as possible inwards, and with their whole
bodies bowed, so as not to present any salient point; the

CHAP. V.                             DOGS.                                    123

tail at the same time "being closely tucked in between
the legs. 'In this attitude they approach each other side-
ways, or even partly backwards. So again \vith deer,
several of the species., when savage and fighting, tuck in
their tails. When one horse in a field tries to bite the
hind-quarters of another in play, or when a rough boy
strikes a donkey from behind, the hind-quarters and the
tail are drawn in, though it does not appear as if this
were done merely to save the tail from being injured.
We have also seen the reverse of these movements; for
when an animal trots with high elastic steps, the tail is
almost always carried aloft.

As I have said, when a dog is chased and runs away,
he keeps his ears directed backwards but still open; and
this is clearly done for the sake of bearing tbe footsteps
of his pursuer. From habit the ears are often held in
this same position, and the tail tucked in, when the dan-
ger is obviously in front. I have repeatedly noticed, with
a timid terrier of mine, that when she is afraid of some
object in front, the nature of which she perfectly knows
and does not need to reconnoitre, yet she will for a long
time hold her ears and tail in this position, looking the
image of discomfort. Discomfort, without any fear, is
similarly expressed: thus, one day I went out of doors,
just at the time when this same dog knew that her dinner
would be brought. I did not call her, but she -wished
much to accompany me, and at the same time she wished
much for her dinner; and there she stood, first looking
one way and then the other., with her tail tucked in and
ears drawn back, presenting an unmistakable appear-
ance of perplexed discomfort.

Almost all the expressive movements now described,
-with the exception of the grinning from joy, are innate
or instinctive, for they are common to all the individ-
uals., young and old, of all the breeds. Most of them

124.                    SPECIAL EXPRESSIONS:              CHAP. V.

are likewise common to the aboriginal parents of the
dog,, namely the wolf and jackal; and some of them to
other species of the same group. Tamed wolves and
jackals, when caressed by their masters, jump about for
joy, wag their tails, lower their ears, lick their master's
hands, crouch down, and even throw themselves on the
ground belly upwards.4 I have seen a rather fox-like
African jackal, from the Gaboon, depress its ears when
caressed. Wolves and jackals, when frightened, certain-
ly tuck in their tails; and a tamed jackal has been de-
scribed as careering round his master in circles and fig-
ures of eight, like a dog, with his tail between his legs.

It has been stated c that foxes, however tame, never
display any of the above expressive movements; but
this is not strictly accurate. Many years ago I observed
in the Zoological Gardens, and recorded the fact at the
time, that a very tame English fox, when caressed by
the keeper, wagged its tail, depressed its ears, and then
threw itself on the ground, belly upwards. The black
fox of North America likewise depressed its cars in a
slight degree. But I believe that foxes never lick the
hands of their masters, and I have been assured that
when frightened they never tuck in their tails. If the
explanation which I have given of the expression of
affection in clogs be admitted, then it would appear that
animals which have never been domesticated—namely
Avolvcs, jackals, and even foxes—have nevertheless ac-

1 Many particulars are, g-iven by Gueldenstiidt in his
account of the jackal in Nov. Comm. A cad. So. Imp.
Petrop. 1775, torn. xx. p. 449. See also another excellent
account of the manners of this animal and of its play, in
' Land and Water,' October, 1869. Lieut. Annesley, It. A.,
has also communicated to me some particulars with re-
spect to the jackal. I have made many inquiries about
wolves and jackals in the Zoological Gardens, and have
observed them for myself.

a ' Land and Water,' November 6, 1809.




quired, through the principle of antithesis, certain ex-
pressive gestures; for it is not probable that these ani-
mals, confined in cages, should have learnt them by imi-
tating dogs.

Gats.—I have already described the actions of a cat

FIG. 15.—Cat terrified at a dog.   From life, by Mr. Wood.

(fig. 0), when feeling .savage and not terrified. She as-
sumes a crouching attitude and occasionally protrudes
her fore-feet, with the claws cxscrtcd ready for striking.

126                     SPECIAL EXPRESSIONS:              CHAP. V.

The tail is extended, being curled or lashed from side to
side. The hair is not erected—at least it was not so in
the few cases observed by me. The ears are drawn closely
backwards and the teeth are shown. Low savage growls
are uttered. We can understand why the attitude as-
sumed by a cat when preparing to fight with another
cat, or in any way greatly irritated, is so widely different
from that of a dog approaching another clog with hostile
intentions; for the cat uses her fore-feet for striking,
and tin's renders a crouching position convenient or
necessary. She is also much more accustomed than a
dog to lie concealed and suddenly spring on her prey.
No cause can be assigned with certainty for the tail
being lashed or curled from side to side. This habit is
common to many other animals—for instance, to the
puma, when prepared to spring;" but it is not common
to dogs, or to foxes, as I infer from-Mr. St. John's ac-
count of a fox lying in wait and seizing a hare. Wo
have already seen that some kinds of lizards and various
snakes, when excited, rapidly vibrate the tips of their
tails. It would appear as if, under strong excitement,
there existed an uncontrollable desire for movement of
some kind, owing to nerve-force being freely liberated
from the excited scnsorium; and that as the tail is left
free, and as its movement does not disturb the general
position of the body, it is curled or lashed about.

All. the movements of a cat, when feeling affection-
ate, are in complete antithesis to those just described.
She now stands upright, with slightly arched back, tail
perpendicularly raised, and ears erected; and. she rubs
her cheeks and flanks against her master or mistress.
The desire to rub something is so strong in cats under
this state of mind, that they may often be seen rubbing

0 Azara, ' Quadrupedes du Paraguay,' 1801, torn. i. p. 136.

CHAP. V.                             OATS.                                   127

themselves against the legs of chairs or tables, or against
door-posts. This manner of expressing affection prob-
ably originated through association, as in the case of
dogs, from the mother nursing and fondling her young;
and perhaps from the young themselves loving each
other and playing together. Another and very different
gesture, expressive of pleasure, has already been de-
scribed, namely, the curious manner in which young and
even old cats, when pleased, alternately protrude their
fore-feet, with separated toes, as if pushing against and
sucking their mother's teats. This habit is so far analo-
gous to that of rubbing against something, that both
apparently are derived from actions performed during
the nursing period. Why cats should show affection by
rubbing so much more than do dogs, though the latter
delight in contact with their masters, and why cats only
occasionally lick the hands of their friends, whilst dogs
always do so, I cannot say. Cats cleanse themselves by
licking their own coats more regularly than do dogs.
On the other hand, their tongues seem less well fitted
for the work than the longer and more flexible tongues
of dogs.

Cats, when terrified, stand at full height, and arch
their backs in a well-known and ridiculous fashion.
They spit, hiss, or growl. The hair over the whole body,
and especially on the tail, becomes erect. In the in-
stances observed by me the basal part of the tail was held
upright, the terminal part being thrown on one side; but
sometimes the tail (see fig. 15) is only a little raised, and
is bent almost from the base to one side. The ears are
drawn back, and the teeth exposed. When two kittens
are playing together, the one often thus tries to frighten
the other. From what we have seen in former chapters,
all the above points of expression are intelligible, except
the extreme arching of the back. I am iiicliued to be-

128                   SPECIAL EXPRESSIONS:              CHAP. V.

lieve that, in the same manner as many birds, whilst they
ruffle their feathers, spread out their wings and tail, to
make themselves look as big as possible, so eats stand
upright at their full height, arch their backs, often raise
the basal part of the tail, and erect their hair, for tlie
same purpose. The lynx, when attacked, is said to arch.
its back, and is thus figured by Brehm. But the keepers
in the Zoological Gardens have never seen any tendency
to this action in the larger feline animals, such as tigers,
lions, tSre.; and these have little cause to be afraid of any
other animal.

C'ats use their voices much as a means of expression.,
and they utter, under various emotions and desires, at
least six or seven different sounds. The purr of satis-
faction, which is made during both inspiration and ex-
piration, is one of the most curious. The puma, cheetah.,
and ocelot likewise purr; but the tiger, when pleased,
" emits a peculiar short snuffle, accompanied by the clos-
ure of the eyelids." ~ It is said that the lion, jaguar.,
and leopard, do not purr.

Horses.—Horses when savage draw their ears closoly
back, protrude their heads, and partially uncover their
incisor teeth, ready for biting. When inclined to kick
behind, they generally, through habit, draw back their
ears; and their eyes are turned backwards in a peculiar
manner.8 "\Yhen pleased, as when some coveted food is
brought to them in the stable, they raise and draw in
their heads, prick their ears, and looking intently to-
wards their friend, often -whinny. Impatience is ex-
pressed by pawing the ground.

7 ' Land and Water,' 1867, p. 657.   See also Azara on tine
Puma, in the work above quoted.

8  Sir C. Bell, 'Anatomy of Expression,' 3rd edit. p. 123.
See  also p.  126,  on  horses  not  breathing  through their
mouths, with reference to their distended nostrils,

CHAP. V.                       RUMINANTS.

The actions of a horse when much startled are highly
expressive. One day my horse was much frightened
at a drilling machine, covered by a tarpaulin, and lying
on an open field. He raised his head so high, that his
neck became almost perpendicular; and this he did from
habit, for the machine lay on a slope below, and could
not have been seen with more distinctness through the
raising of the head; nor if any sound had proceeded
from it, could the sound have been more distinctly heard.
I-Iis eyes and ears were directed intently forwards; and I
could feel through the saddle the palpitations of his
lieart. With red dilated nostrils he snorted violently,
and whirling round, would have dashed off at full speed,
had I not prevented him. The distension of the nostrils
is not for the sake of scenting the source of .danger, for
"when a horse smells carefully at any object and is not
alarmed, he does not dilate his nostrils. Owing to the
presence of a valve in the throat, a horse when panting
does not breathe through his open mouth, but through
liis nostrils; and these consequently have become en-
tlowed with great powers of expansion. This expansion
of the nostrils, as well as the snorting, and the palpita-
tions of the heart, are actions which have become firmly
associated during a long series of generations with the
emotion of terror; for terror has habitually led the horse
to the most violent exertion in dashing away at full speed
from the cause of danger.

Ruminants.—Cattle and sheep are remarkable from
displaying in so slight a degree their emotions or sen-
sations, excepting that of extreme pain. A bull when
enraged exhibits his rage only by the manner in which
lie holds his lowered head, with distended nostrils, and
"by bellowing. He also often paws the ground; but
this pawing seems quite different from that of an im-

130                   SPECIAL EXPRESSIONS:             CHAP. V.

patient horse, for when the soil is loose, he throws up
clouds of dust. I believe that bulls act in this manner
when irritated by flies, for the sake of driving them
away. The wilder breeds of sheep and the chamois
when startled stamp on the ground, and whistle through
their noses; and this serves as a danger-signal to their
comrades. The musk-ox of the Arctic regions, when
encountered, likewise stamps on the ground.0 How this
stamping action .arose I cannot conjecture; for from in-
quiries which I have made it does not appear that any
of these animals fight with their fore-legs.

Some species of deer, when savage, display far more
expression than do cattle, sheep, or goats, for, as has
already been stated, they draw back their ears, grind
their teeth, erect their hair, squeal, stamp on the ground,
and brandish their horns. One day in the Zoological
Gardens, the Formosan deer (Oervus pseudaxis] ap-
proached me in a curious attitude, with his muzzle
raised high tip, so that the horns were pressed back on
his neck; the head being held rather obliquely. From
the expression of his eye I felt sure that he was savage;
he approached slowly, and as soon as he came close to
the iron bars, he did not lower his head to butt at me,
but suddenly bent it inwards, and struck his horns with
great force against the railings. Mr. Bartlett informs
me that some other species of deer place themselves in
the same attitude when enraged.

Monkeys.—The various species and genera of mon-
keys express their feelings in many different ways; and
this fact is interesting, as in some degree bearing on the
question, whether the so-called races of man should be
ranked as distinct species or varieties; for, as we shall

•' Land and Water,' 1869, p. 152.

CHAP. V.                        MONKEYS.                               131

see in the following chapters, the different races of man
express their emotions and sensations with remarkable
uniformity throughout the world. ...Some of the expres-
sive actions of monkeys are interesting in another way,
namely from being closely analogous to those of man."1 As
I have had no opportunity of observing any one species
of the group under all circumstances, my miscellaneous
remarks will be best arranged under different states of
the mind.

Pleasure, joy, affection.—It is not possible to distin-
guish in monkeys, at least without more experience than
I have had, the expression of pleasure or joy from that
of affection. Young chimpanzees make a kind of bark-
ing noise, when pleased by the return of anyone to whom
they are attached. When this noise, which the keepers
call a laugh, is uttered, the lips are protruded; but so
they are under various other emotions. Nevertheless
I could perceive that when they were pleased the form
of the lips differed a little from that assumed when they
were angered. If a young chimpanzee be tickled—and
the armpi-ts are particularly sensitive to tickling, as in
the case of our children,—a more decided chuckling or
laughing sound is uttered; though the laughter is some-
times noiseless. The corners of the mouth are then
drawn backwards; and this sometimes causes the lower
eyelids to be slightly wrinkled. But this Avrinkling,
which is so characteristic of our own laughter, is more
plainly seen in some other monkeys. The teeth in the
upper jaw in the chimpanzee are not exposed when they
utter their laughing noise, in which respect they differ
from us. But their eyes spark]e and grow brighter, 'as
Mr. W. L. Martin,10 who has particularly attended to
their expression, states.'

10 ' Natural History of Mammalia,' 1841, vol. i. pp. 383,

132                   SPECIAL EXPRESSIONS:              CIIAP. V.

Young Orangs, when tickled, likewise grin and make
a chuckling sound; and Mr. Martin says that their eyes
grow brighter. As soon as their laughter ceases, an ex-
pression may be detected passing over their faces, which,
as Mr. Wallace remarked to me, may he called a smile.
I have also noticed something of the same kind with
the chimpanzee. Dr. Duchenne—and I cannot quote a
better authority—informs me that he kept a very tame
monkey in his house for a year; and Avhen he gave it dur-
ing meal-times some choice delicacy, he observed that
the comers of its mouth were slightly raised; thus an
expression of satisfaction, partaking of the nature of an
incipient smile, and resembling that often seen on the
face of man, could be plainly perceived in this animal.)1

The Oebus azarce^ when rejoided at again seeing a
beloved person, utters a peculiar tittering (kiclierndc-n)
sound. It also expresses agreeable sensations, by drawing
back the corners of its mouth, without producing any
sound. Kengger calls this movement laughter, but it
would be more appropriately called a smile. The form
of the mouth is different when cither pain or terror is
expressed, and high shrieks are uttered. Another spe-
cies of Cebus in the Zoological Gardens (0. liypoleucus)
when pleased, makes a reiterated shrill note, and likewise
draws back the corners of its mouth, apparently through
the contraction of the same muscles as with us. So does
the Barbary ape (Inuus ecaudatus) to an extraordinary
degree; and I observed in this monkey that the skin of
the lower eyelids then became much wrinkled. At the
same time it rapidly moved its lower jaw or lips in a
spasmodic manner, the teeth being exposed; but the
noise produced was hardly more distinct than that which

11 !Rengger (' Smigetheire von Paraqviny', 1830, s. 46)
kept these monkeys in confinement for seven, years in
their native country of Paraguay.

CHAP. V.                        MONKEYS.                              133

we sometimes call silent laughter. Two of the keepers
affirmed that this slight sound was the animal's laughter.,
and when I expressed some doubt on this head (being at
the time quite inexperienced), they made it attack or
rather threaten a hated Entcllns monkey, living in the
same compartment. Instantly the whole expression of
the face of the Inuus changed; the mouth was opened
much more widely, the canine teeth were more fully
exposed, and a hoarse harking noise was uttered.

The Anubis baboon (Gynocepludus a nulls) was first
insulted and put into a furious rage, as was easily done,
by his keeper, who then made friends with him and
shook hands. As the reconciliation was effected the ba-
boon rapidly moved up and down his jaws and lips, and
looked pleased. When we laugh heartily, a similar move-
ment, or quiver, may be observed more or less distinctly
in our jaws; but with man the muscles of the chest are
more particularly acted on, whilst with this baboon, and
with some other monkeys, it is the muscles of the jaws
and lips which are spasmodical!)' affected.

I have already had occasion to remark on the curious
manner in which two or three species of Macacus and
the Cynopitkeous niycr draw back their ears and utter a
slight jabbering noise, when they are pleased by being
caressed. With the Cynopithecus (fig. 17), the corners
of the mouth are at the same time drawn backwards
and upwards, so that the teeth are exposed. Hence this
expression would never be recognized by a stranger as
one of pleasure. The crest of long hairs on the forehead
is depressed, and apparently the whole skin of the head
drawn backwards. The eyebrows are thus raised a little,
and the eyes assume a staring appearance. The lower
eyelids also become slightly wrinkled; but this wrin-
kling is not conspicuous, owing to the permanent trans-
verse furrows on the face.

134:                  SPECIAL EXPRESSIONS:             CHAP. V.                              \

Painful emotions and sensations.—With monkeys                           1

the expression of slight pain, or of any painful emotion,                             |

such as grief, vexation, jealousy, £c., is not easily dis-                             j

tiuguished from that of moderate anger; and these states                            |

of mind readily and quickly pass into each other.   Grief,                             j

however, with some  species is  certainly  exliibited  by                             ,

weeping. A woman, who sold a monkey to the Zoological                             |

Society, believed to have come from Borneo (Macaws                             |

maurusor M. iuornatus of Gray), said that it often cried;                             |

and Mr. Bartlett, as well as the keeper Mr. Sutton, have                            }'

repeatedly seen it, when grieved, or even when much             •               }

pitied, weeping so copiously that the tears rolled down.
its cheeks. There is, however, something strange about                             1

this case, for two specimens subsequently kept in the
Gardens, and believed to be the same species, have never                             *

been seen to weep, though they were carefully observed
by the keeper and myself when much distressed and
loudly screaming. Rengger states 12 that the eyes of the
Oebus azarcB fill with tears, but not sufficiently to over-                             ,,

flow, when it is prevented getting some much desired                             |

object, or is much frightened. Humboldt also asserts
that the eyes of the Callithrix sciureus " instantly fill •                           f

with tears when it is seized with fear; " but when this                             •'

pretty little monkey in the Zoological Gardens was
teased, so as to cry out loudly, this did not occur. I do                 **

not, however, wish to throw the least doubt on the ac-
curacy of Humboldt's statement.

The appearance of dejection in young orangs and                             f

chimpanzees, when out of health, is as plain and almost
as pathetic as in the case of our children. This state of                              %

mind and body is shown by their listless movements,                              *'

fallen countenances, dull eyes, and changed complexion."    .

12 Hengger,  ibid.   s.   46.   Htim'boldt,   * Personal   Narra-                                 .

tive,' Eng. translat. vol. iv. p. 527.




Via. 16.— UynopltheciiK idr/cr, in a placid condition.
Drawn from life by Mr. Wolf.

Fio. 17.—The same, when pleased by being caressed.





Anger.—This emotion is often exhibited by many
kinds of monkeys, and is expressed., as Mr. Martin re-
marks,13 in many different ways. " Some species, when
irritated, pout the lips, gaze with a fixed and savage glare
on their foe, and make repeated short starts as if about
to spring forward, uttering at the same time inward gut-
tural sounds. Many display their anger by suddenly
advancing, making abrupt starts, at the same time open-
ing the mouth and pursing up the lips, so as to conceal
tlic teeth, while the eyes arc daringly fixed on the enemy,
as if in savage defiance. Some again, and principally
the long-tailed monkeys, or Gucnons, display their teeth,
and accompany their malicious grins with a sharp,
abrupt, reiterated cry." Mr. Sutton confirms the state-
ment that some species uncover their teeth when en-
raged, whilst others conceal them by the protrusion of
their lips; and some kinds draw back their cars. The
Cynopitlwciis niyer, lately referred to, acts in tills man-
ner, at the same time depressing the crest of hair on its
forehead, and showing its teeth; so that the movements
of the features from anger are nearly the same as those
from pleasure; and the two expressions can be distin-
guished only by those familiar with the animal.

Baboons often sbow their passion and threaten their
enemies in a very odd manner, namely, by opening their
mouths widely as in the act of yawning. Mr. Bartlo.tfc
lias often seen two baboons, when first placed in the
same compartment, sitting opposite to each other and.
thus alternately opening their mouths; and this action
seems frequently to end in a real yawn. Mr. Bartlctt
bcliovcs that both animals wish to show to each other
that they are provided with a formidable set of teeth, as
is undoubtedly the case. As I could hardly credit the

Nat. Hist, of Mammalia, 1841, p. 351.

CHAP. V.                           MONKEYS.                                  137

reality of this yawning gesture, Mr. Bartlett insulted
an old baboon and put him into a violent passion; and
lie almost immediately thus acted. Some species of
Macacus and of Cercopithecus14 behave in the same
manner. Baboons likewise show their anger, as was ob-
served by Brehm with those which he kept alive in Abys-
sinia, in another manner, namely, by striking the ground
with one hand, " like an angry man striking the table
with Ms fist." I have seen this movement with the ba-
boons in the Zoological Gardens; but sometimes the
action seems ratlier to represent the searching for a stone
or other object in their beds of straw.

Mr. Sutton has often observed the face of the Maca-
cus rhesus^ when much enraged, growing red. As he was
mentionififg this to me, another monkey attacked a rhe-
sus, and I saw its face redden as plainly as that of a man
in a violent passion. In the course of a few minutes,
after the battle, the face of this monkey recovered its
natural tint. At the same time that the face reddened,
the naked posterior part of the body, which is always
red, seemed to grow still redder; but I cannot positively
assert that this was the case. "Wlien the Mandrill is in
any way excited, the brilliantly coloured, naked parts
of the skin are said to become still more vividly coloured.

With several species of baboons the ridge of the fore-
head projects much over the eyes, and is studded with
a few long hairs, representing our eyebrows. These
animals are always loolving about them, and in order to
look upwards they raise their eyebrows. They have
thiis, as it would appear, acquired the habit of frequently
moving their eyebrows. However this may be, many
lands of monkeys, especially the baboons, when angered

14 Brehm, ' Thierleben,' B. i. s. 84.    On baboons strik-
ing the ground, s. 61.



or in any way excited, rapidly and incessantly move their
eyebrows up and down, as well as the hairy skin of their
foreheads.15 ..'\As we associate in the case of man the rais-
ing and lowering of the eyebrows with definite states of
the mind, the almost incessant movement of the eye-
brows by monkeys gives them a senseless expression. I
once observed a man who had a trick of continually rais-
ing his eyebrows without any corresponding emotion,
and this gave to him a foolish appearance; so it is with
some persons who keep the corners of their months a lit-
tle drawn backwards and upwards, as if by an incipient
smile, though at the time they are not amused or pleasccjc

A young orang, made jealous by her keeper attending
to another monkey, slightly uncovered her teeth, and,
uttering a peevish noise like tisk-shist, turned her back
on him. Both orangs and chimpanzees, when a little
more angered, protrude their lips greatly, and make a
harsh barking noise. A young female chimpanzee, in a
violent passion, presented a curious resemblance to a
child in the same state. She screamed loudly with widely
open mouth, the lips being retracted so that the teeth
were fully exposed. She threw her arms wildly about,
sometimes clasping them over her head. She rolled on
the ground, sometimes on her back, sometimes on her
bclty, and bit everything within reach. A young gibbon
(Hylolates syndactylus] in a passion has been described10
as behaving in almost exactly the same manner.

The lips of young orangs and chimpanzees are pro-
truded, sometimes to a wonderful degree, under various
circumstances. They act thus, not only when slightly
angered, sulky, or disappointed, but when alarmed at

18 Brelim remarks (^Thierleben,' s. 68) that the> eyc-
."brows of the Inuus ecaudatus are frequently moved up
and down when the animal is angered.

18 G-. Bennett, 'Wanderings in New South Wales,' &c.
vol. ii. 1834. -n. 153.




18.—Chimpanzee disappointed and sulky.   Drawn from life by Mr. Wood.

140                   SPECIAL EXPRESSIONS:             CHAP. V.

anything—in one instance, at the sight of a turtle/7-—
and likewise when pleased. But neither the degree of
protrusion nor the shape of the mouth is exactly the
same, as I believe, in all cases; and the sounds which
are then uttered are different. The accompanying
drawing represents a chimpanzee made sulky by an
orange having been offered him, and then taken away.
A similar protrusion or pouting'of the lips, though
to a much slighter degree, may be seen in sulky chil-

Many years ago., in the Zoological Gardens, I placed
a looking-glass on the floor before two young orangs,
who, as far as it was known, had never before seen one.
At first they gazed at their own images with the most
steady surprise, and often changed their point of view.
They then approached close and protruded their lips
towards the image, as if to kiss it, in exactly the same
manner as they had previously done towards each other,
when first placed, a few days before, in the same room.
They next made all sorts of grimaces, and put them-
selves in various attitudes before the mirror; they
pressed and rubbed the surface; they placed their hands
at different distances behind it; looked behind it; and
finally seemed almost frightened, started a little, became
cross^ and refused to look any longer.

"When we try to perform some little action which is
difficult and requires precision, for instance, to thread
a needle, we generally close our lips firmly, for the sake,
I presume, of not disturbing our movements by breath-
ing; and I noticed the same action in a young Orang.
The poor little creature was sick, and was amusing itself
by trying to Mil the flies on the window-panes with its

17 W. L. Martin, Nat.  Hist,  of Maroin. Animals,   1841,
p. 405.

. V.                           MONKEYS.                                 141

knuckles; this was difficult as the flies buzzed about,
and at each attempt the lips were firmly compressed; and
at the same time slightly protruded. /

Although the countenances, and more especially the
gestures, of orangs and chimpanzees are in some re-
spects highly expressive, I doubt whether on the whole
they are so expressive as those of some other kinds of
monkeys. This may be attributed in part to their ears
being immovable, and in part to the nakedness of their
eyebrows, of which the movements are thus rendered less
conspicuous. When, however, they raise their eyebrows
their foreheads become, as with us, transversely wrinkled.
In comparison with man, their faces are inexpressive,
chiefly owing to their not frowning under any emotion
of the mind—that is, as far as I have been able to ob-
serve, and I carefully attended to this point. Frown-
ing, which is one of the most important of all the expres-
sions in man, is due to the contraction of the corrugators
by which the eyebrows are lowered and brought together,
so that vertical furrows are formed on the forehead.
Both the orang and chimpanzee are saidls to possess
this muscle, but it seems rarely brought into action, at
least in a conspicuous manner. I made my hands into
a sort of cage, and placing some tempting fruit within,
allowed both a young orang and chimpanzee to try their
utmost to get it out; but although they grew rather
cross, they showed not a trace of a frown. Nor was there
any frown when they were enraged. Twice I took two
chimpanzees from their rather dark room suddenly into
bright sunshine, which would certainly have caused us
to frown; they blinked and winked their eyes, but only

18 Prof. Owen on the Orang1, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1830, p.
28. On the Chimpanzee, see Prof. Macalister, in Annals
and Mag1, of Nat. Hist. vol. vii. 1871, p. 342, who states
that the comtf/ator suiwrcilii is inseparable from the



once did I see a very slight frown. On another occasion,
I tickled the nose of a chimpanzee with a straw, and as
it crumpled, up its face., slight vertical furrows appeared
between the eyebrows. I have never seen a frown on the
forehead of the orang.

The gorilla, when enraged, is described as erecting
its crest of hair, throwing down its under lip, dilating
its nostrils,- and uttering terrific yells. Messrs. Savage
and Wyman 19 state that the scalp can be freely moved
backwards and forwards, and that when the animal is
excited it is strongly contracted; but I presume that
they mean by this latter expression that the scalp is low-
ered; for they likewise speak of the young chimpanzee,
when crying out, " as having the eyebrows strongly con-
tracted." The great power of movement in the scalp
of the gorilla, of many baboons and other monkeys, de-
serves notice in relation to the power possessed by some
few men, either through reversion or persistence, of vol-
untarily moving their scalps.20

Astonishment, Terror.—A living fresh-water turtle
was placed at my request in the same compartment in
the Zoological Gardens with many monkeys; and they
showed unbounded astonishment, as well as some fear.
This was displayed by their remaining motionless, star-
ing intently with widely opened eyes, their eyebrows
being often moved up and down. Their faces seemed
somewhat lengthened. They occasionally raised them-
selves on their hind-legs to get a better view. They often
retreated a few feet, and then turning their heads over
one shoulder, again stared intently. It was curious to
observe how much less afraid they were of the turtle
than of a living snake which I had formerly placed in

10 Boston Journal of Nat. Hist. 1845-4-7, vol. v. p. 423.
On the Chimpanzee, ibid. 1843--44, vol. iv. p. 365.

20 See on this subject, ' Descent of Man,' vol. i. p. 20.

CHAP. V.                        MONKEYS.                               143

their compartment;21 for in the course of a few min-
utes some of the monkeys ventured to approach and
touch the turtle. On the other hand, some of the larger
baboons were greatly terrified, and grinned as if on the
point of screaming out. When I showed a little dressed-
up doll to the Cynopitliecus niger, it stood motionless,
stared intently with widely opened eyes, and advanced
its ears a little forwards. But when the turtle was
placed in its compartment, this monkey also moved
its lips in an odd, rapid, jabbering manner, which the
keeper declared was meant to conciliate or please the

I was never able clearly to perceive that the eye-
brows of astonished monkeys were kept permanently
raised, though they were frequently moved up and down.
Attention, which precedes astonishment, is expressed by
man by a slight raising of the eyebrows; and Dr. Du-
chenne informs me that when he gave to the monkey
formerly mentioned some quite new article of food, it
elevated its eyebrows a little, thus assuming an appear-
ance of close attention. It then took the food in its
fingers, and, with lowered or rectilinear eyebrows,
scratched, smelt, and examined it,—an expression of re-
flection being thus exhibited. Sometimes it would
throw back its head a little, and again with sud-
denly raised eyebrows re-examine and finally taste the

In no case did any monkey keep its mouth open when
it was astonished. Mr. Button observed for me a young
orang and chimpanzee during a considerable length of
time; and however much they were astonished, or Avhilst
listening intently to some strange sound, they did "not
keep their mouths open. This fact is surprising, as with

ai ' Descent of Man,' vol. i. p. 43.

144:                    SPECIAL EXPRESSIONS:               CHAP. V.

mankind hardly any expression is more general than a
widely open mouth under the sense of astonishment.
As far as I have been ahle to observe, monkeys breathe
more freely through their nostrils than men do; and
this may account for their not opening their months
when they are astonished: for, as we shall see in a future
chapter, man apparently acts in this manner when
startled, at first for the sake of quickly drawing a full
inspiration, and afterwards for the sake of breathing
as quietly as possible.

Terror is expressed by many kinds of monkeys by
the utterance of shrill screams; the lips being drawn,
back, so that the teeth are exposed. The hair becomes
erect, especially when some anger is likewise felt. Mr.
Sutton has distinctly seen the face of the Macacus rhesus
grow pale from fear. Monkeys also tremble from fear;
and sometimes they void their excretions. I have-seen
one which., when caught, almost fainted from an excess
of terror.

Sufficient facts have now been given with respect to
the expressions of various animals. It is impossible to
agree with Sir C. Bell when he says -- that " the faces
of animals seem chiefly capable of expressing rage and
fear; " and again, when he says that all their expressions
" may be referred, more or less plainly, to their acts of
volition or necessary instincts." He who will look at a
dog preparing to attack another dog or a man, and at
the same animal when caressing his master, or will watch,
the countenance of a monkey when insulted, and when
fondled by his keeper, will be forced to admit that the
movements of their features and their gestures are almost
as expressive as those of man. Although no explanation

a ' Anatomy of Expression,' 3rd edit. 1844, pp. 138, 121.




can be given of some of the expressions in the lower ani-
mals, the greater number are explicable in accordance
with the three principles given at the commencement of
the first chapter.





The screaming and weeping1 of infants—Forms of features
—Age at which weeping" commences—The effects of
habitual restraint on weeping-—Sobbing—Cause of the
contraction of the muscles round the eyes during
screaming1—Cause of the secretion of tears.

IN this and the following chapters the expressions
exhibited by Man under various states of the mind will
be described and explained, as far as lies in my power.
My observations will be arranged according to the order
which I have found the most convenient; and this will
generally lead to opposite emotions and sensations suc-
ceeding each other.

Suffering of tlie body and mind: weeping.—I have
already described in sufficient detail, in the third chap-
ter,, the signs of extreme pain, as shown by screams or
groans, with the writhing of the whole body and the
teeth clenched or ground together. These signs arc
often accompanied or followed by profuse sweating, pal-
lor, trembling, utter prostration, or faintness. No suf-
fering is greater than that from extreme fear or horror,
but here a distinct emotion comes into play, and will be
elsewhere considered. Prolonged suffering, especially of
'the mind, passes into low spirits, grief, dejection, and
despair, and these states will be the subject of the follow-

CHAP. VI.                        WEEPING.

ing chapter. Here I shall almost confine myself to weep-
ing or crying, more especially in children.

Infants, when suffering even slight pain, moderate
hunger, or discomfort, utter violent and prolonged
screams. Whilst thus screaming their eyes are firmly
closed, so that the skin round them is wrinkled, and the
forehead contracted into a frown. The mouth is widely
opened with the lips retracted in a peculiar manner,
which causes it to assume a squarish form; the gums
or teeth being more or less exposed. The breath is in-
haled almost spasmodically. It is easy to observe in-
fants whilst screaming; but I have found photographs
made by the instantaneous process the best means for
observation, as allowing more deliberation. I have col-
lected twelve, most of them made purposely for me; and
they all exhibit the same general characteristics. I have,
therefore, had six of them * (Plate I.) reproduced by the
heliotype process.

The firm closing of the eyelids and consequent com-
pression of the eyeball,—and tin's is a most important
element in various expressions,—serves to protect the
eyes from becoming too much gorged with blood, as will
presently be explained in detail. With respect to the
order in which the several muscles contract in firmly
compressing the eyes, I am indebted to Dr. Langstaff,
of Southampton, for some observations, which I have
since repeated. The best plan for observing the order
is to make a person first raise his eyebrows, and this pro-
duces transverse wrinkles across the forehead; and then
very gradually to contract all the muscles round the eyes

1 The best photographs in my collection are by Mr.
Rejlander, of Victoria Street, London, and by Herr Kinder-
mann, of Hamburg. Figs. 1, 3, 4, and G are by the former;
and figs. 2 and 5, by the latter gentleman. Fig. G is given
to show moderate crying in an older child.



with as much force as possible. The reader who is un-
acquainted with the anatomy of the face, ought to refer
to p. 24:, and look at the woodcuts 1 to 3. The corru-
gators of the brow (corrugator supercilii) seem to be the
first muscles to contract; and these draw the eyebrows
downwards and inwards towards the base of the nose,
causing vertical furrows, that is a frown, to appear be-
tween the eyebrows; at the same time they cause the
disappearance of the transverse wrinkles across the fore-
head. The orbicular muscles contract almost simultane-
ously with the corrugators, and produce wrinkles all
round the eyes; they appear, however, to be enabled to
contract with greater force, as soon as the contraction of
the corrugators has given them some support. Lastly,
the pyramidal muscles of the nose contract; and these
draw the eyebrows and the skin of the forehead still
lower down, producing short transverse wrinkles across
the base of the nose.2 For the sake of brevity these mus-
cles will generally be spoken of as the orbiculars, or as
those surrounding the eyes.

When these muscles are strongly contracted, those
running to the upper lip 3 likewise contract and raise
the upper lip. This might have been expected from
the manner in which at least one of them, the malaris,

2 Henle ('Hanclbuch d. Syst. Anat. 1858, B. i. s. 139)
agrees with Duchenne that this is the effect of the con-
traction of the pyramidalis nasi.

8 These consist of the levator labii superioris alwqiic nasi,
the levator laltii proprius, the malaris, and the ffyflomatirnn
minor, or little zygomatic. This latter muscle runs parallel
to and above the great zygomatic, and is attached to the
onter part of the tipper lip. It is represented in fig. 2
(I. p. 24), but not in figs. 1 and 3. Dr. Duchenne first
showed (' Mficanisme de la Physionomie Humaine,' Al-
bum, 1862, p. 39) the importance of the contraction of
this muscle in the shape assumed by the features in cry-
ing. Henle considers the above-named muscles (except-
ing the malaris) as subdivisions of the quadratus labii

CHAP. VI.                       WEEPING.                               149

is connected with the orbiculars. Any one who will
gradually contract the muscles round his eyes, will feel,
as he increases the force, that his upper lip and the
wings of his nose (which are partly acted on by one of
the same muscles) are almost always a little drawn up.
If he keeps his mouth firmly shut whilst contracting
the muscles round the eyes, and then suddenly relaxes
his lips, he will feel that the pressure on his eyes im-
mediately increases. So again when a person on a bright,
glaring day wishes to look at a distant object, but is
compelled partially to close his eyelids, the upper lip
may almost always be observed to be somewhat raised.
The mouths of some very short-sighted persons, who
are forced habitually to reduce the aperture of their
eyes, wear from this same reason a grinning expression.
The raising of the upper lip draws upwards the flesh
of the upper parts of the cheeks, and produces a strongly
marked fold on each cheek,—the naso-labial fold,—
which runs from near the wings of the nostrils to the
corners of the mouth and below them. This fold or fur-
row may be seen in all the photographs, and is very
characteristic of the expression of a crying child; though
a nearly similar fold is produced in the act of laughing
or smiling.4

* Although Dr. Duchenne has so carefully studied the
contraction of the different muscles during the act of
crying-, and the furrows on the face thus produced, there
seems to be something incomplete in his account; but
what this is I cannot say. He has given a figure (Album,
fig. 48) in which one half of the face is made, by gal-
vanizing the proper muscles, to smile; whilst the other
half is similarly made to begin crying. Almost all those
(viz. nineteen out of twenty-one persons) to whom I
showed the smiling half of the face instantly recognized
the expression; but, with respect to the other half, only
six persons out of twenty-one recognized it,—that is, if
we accept such terms as " grief," " misery," " annoy-
ance," as correct;—whereas, fifteen persons were ludi-
crously . mistaken; some of them saying the face ex-



As the upper lip is much drawn up during the act of
screaming, in the manner just explained, the depressor
muscles of the angles of the mouth (see K in woodcuts
1 and 2) are strongly contracted in order to keep the
mouth widely open, so that a full volume of sound may
be poured forth. The action of these opposed muscles.,
above and below, tends to give to the mouth an oblong,
almost squarish outline, as may be seen in the accom-
panying photographs. An excellent observer,5 in de-
scribing a baby crying whilst being fed, says, " it made
its mouth like a square, and let the porridge run out at
all four corners." I believe, but we shall return to this
point in a future chapter, that the depressor muscles of
the angles of the mouth are less under the separate con-
trol of the will than the adjoining muscles; so that if a
young child is only doubtfully inclined to cry, this mus-
cle is generally the first to contract, and is the last to
cease contracting. "When older children commence cry-
ing, the muscles which run to the upper lip are often the
first to contract; and this may perhaps be due to older
children not having so strong a tendency to scream
loudly, and consequently to keep their mouths widely

pressed " fun," " satisfaction," " cunning," " disgust," &e.
We may infer from this that there is something wrong in
the expression. Some of the fifteen persons may, how-
ever, have heen partly misled hy not expecting to see
an old man crying, and by tears not being secreted. With,
respect to another figure by Dr. Duchenne (fig. 49), in
which the muscles of half the face are galvanized in
order to represent a man beginning to cry, with the eye-
brow on the same side rendered oblique, "which is charac-
teristic of misery, the expression was recognized by a
greater proportional number of persons. Out of twenty-
three persons, fourteen answered correctly, " sorrow,"
" distress," " grief," " just going to cry," " endurance
of pain," &c. On the other hand, nine persons eitner
could form no opinion or "were entirely wrong, answer-
ing, " cunning leer," " jocund," " looking at an intense
light," " looking at a distant object," <fcc.

5 ifrs, GaskeU, ' Mary Barton,' new edit. p. 84.

CHAP. VI.                        WEEPING.                               151

open; so that the above-named depressor muscles are not
brought into such strong action.

With one of my own infants, from his eighth day and
for some time afterwards, I often observed that the first
sign of a screaming-fit, when it could be observed com-
ing on gradually, was a little frown, owing to the con-
traction of the corrugators of the brows; the capillaries
of the naked head and face becoming at the same time
reddened with blood. As soon as the screaming-fit ac-
tually began, all the muscles round the eyes were strongly
contracted, and the mouth widely opened in the manner
above described; so that at this early period the features
assumed the same form as at a more advanced age.

Dr. Pidcrit ° lays great stress on the contraction of
certain muscles which draw down the nose and narrow
the nostrils, as eminently characteristic of a crying ex-
pression. The deprexxores ancjuli or is, as AVC have just
seen, are usually contracted at the same time, and they
indirectly tend, according to Dr. Duchenne, to act in
this same manner on the nose. With children having
bad colds a similar pinched appearance of the nose may
be noticed, Avhich is at least partly due, as remarked to
me by Dr. Langstaff, to their constant snuffling, and the
consequent pressure of the atmosphere on the two sides.
The purpose of this contraction of the nostrils by chil-
dren having bad colds, or whilst crying, seems to be to
check the downward flow of the mucus and tears, and
to prevent these fluids spreading over the upper lip.

After a prolonged and severe screaming-fit, the scalp,
face, and eyes are reddened, OAving to the return of the
blood from the head having been impeded by the violent
expiratory efforts; but the redness of the stimulated

B ' Mimilc und Physiognomilc,' 1867, s. 102.    Duclienne,
Meeanisme de la Phys. Humaine, Album, p. 34.



eyes is chiefly due to the copious effusion of tears. The
various muscles of the face which have heen strongly
contracted, still twitch a little, and the upper lip is still
slightly drawn up or everted,7 with the corners of the
mouth still a little drawn downwards. I have myself
felt, and have observed in other grown-up persons, that
Avhen tears are restrained with difficulty, as in reading
a pathetic story, it is almost impossible to prevent the
various muscles, which with young children are brought
into strong action during their screaming-fits, from
slightly twitching or trembling.

Infants whilst young do not shed tears or weep, as is
well known to nurses and medical men. This circum-
stance is not exclusively due to the lacrymal glands
being as yet incapable of secreting tears. I first noticed
this fact from having accidentally brushed with the cufl:
of my coat the open eye of one of my infants, when
seventy-seven days old, causing this eye to water freely;
and though the child screamed violently, the other eye
remained dry, or was only slightly suffused with tears.
A similar slight effusion occurred ten days previously
in both eyes during a screaming-fit. The tears did not
run over the eyelids and roll down the cheeks of this
child, whilst screaming badly, when 122 days old. This
first happened 17 days later, at the age of 139 days. A
few other children have been observed for me, and the
period of free weeping appears to be very variable. In
one case, the eyes became slightly suffused at the age
of only 20 days; in another, at 62 days. With two other
children, the tears did not run down the face at the ages
of 84 and 110 days; but in a third child they did run
down at the age of 104 days. In one instance, as I was
positively assured, tears ran down at the unusually early

7 Dr. Duchenne makes this remark, ibid. p. 39.

CHAP. VI.                        WEEPING.                                153

age of 42 days. It would appear as if the lacrymal glands
required some practice in the individual before they are
easily excited into action, in somewhat the same manner
as various inherited consensual movements and tastes
require some exercise before they are fixed and perfected.
This is all the more likely with a habit like weeping,
which must have been acquired since the period when
man branched oil! from the common progenitor of the
genus Homo and of the non-weeping anthropomorphous

The fact of tears not being shed at a very early age
from pain or any mental emotion is remarkable, as, later
in life, no expression is more general or more strongly
marked than weeping. When the hahit has once hccn
acquired by an infant, it expresses in the clearest man-
ner suffering of all kinds, both bodily pain and mental
distress, even though accompanied by other emotions,
such as fear or rage. The character of the crying, how-
ever, changes at a very early age, as I noticed in my own
infants,—the passionate cry differing from that of grief.
A lady informs me that her child, nine months old, when
in a passion screams loudly, but does not wee]); tears,.
however, are shed when she is punished by her chair
being turned with its back to the table. This difference
may perhaps he attributed to weeping being restrained,
as AVC shall immcdiatety see, at a more advanced age,
under most circumstances excepting grief; and to the
influence of sneh restraint being transmitted to an earlier
period of life, than that at which it was first practised.

With adults, especially o! the male sex, weeping soon
ceases to be caused by, or to express, bodily pain. This
may be accounted for by its being thought weak and
unmanly by men, both of civilized and barbarous races,
to exhibit bodily pain by any outward sign. With this
exception, savages weep copiously from very slight



causes, of which fact Sir J". Lubbock 8 has collected in-
stances. A New Zealand chief " cried like a child he-
cause the sailors spoilt his favourite cloak by powdering
it with flour." I saw in Tierra del Fuego a native who
had lately lost a brother, and who alternately cried with
hysterical violence, and laughed heartily at anything
which amused him. "With the civilized nations of Eu-
rope there is also much difference in the frequency of
weeping. Englishmen rarely cry, except under the pres-
sure of the acutest grief; whereas in some parts of the
Continent the men shed tears much more readily and

The insane notoriously give way to all their emo-
tions with little or no restraint; and I am informed by
Dr. J. Crichton Browne, that nothing is more charac-
teristic of simple melancholia, even in the male sex, than
a tendency to weep on the slightest occasions, or from no
cause. They also weep disproportionately on the occur-
rence of any real cause of grief. The length of time dur-
ing which some patients weep is astonishing, as well as
the amount of tears which they shed. One melancholic
girl wept for a whole day, and afterwards confessed to
Dr. Browne, that it was because she remembered that
she had once shaved off her eyebrows to promote their
growth. Many patients in the asylum sit for a long time
rocking themselves backwards and forwards; " and if
spoken to, they stop their movements, purse up their
eyes, depress the corners of the mouth, and burst out
crying." In some of these cases, the being spoken to or
kindly greeted appears to suggest some fanciful and sor-
rowful notion; but in other cases an effort of any kind
excites weeping, independently of any sorrowful idea.
Patients suffering from acute mania likewise have parox-

8 ' The Origin of Civilization,' 1870, p. 355.

CHAP. VI.                        WEEPING.                                155

ysms of violent crying or blubbering, in the midst of
their incoherent ravings. "We must not, however, lay too
much stress on the copious shedding of tears by the in-
sane, as being due to the lack of all restraint; for cer-
tain brain-diseases, as hemiplcgia, brain-wasting, and
senile decay, have a special tendency to induce weep-
ing. Weeping is common in the insane, even after a
complete state of fatuity has been reached and the power
of speech lost. Persons born idiotic likewise weep;9
but it is said that this is not the case with cretins.

Weeping seems to be the primary and natural expres-
sion, as we see in children, of suffering of any kind,
whether bodily pain short of extreme agony, or mental
distress. But the foregoing facts and common experi-
ence show us that a frequently repeated effort to restrain
weeping, in association with certain states of the mind,
does much in checking the habit. On the other hand,
it appears that the power of weeping can bo increased
through habit; thus the Rev. R. Taylor,10 who long re-
sided in New Zealand, asserts that the women can volun-
tarily shed tears in abundance; they meet for-this pur-
pose to mourn for the dead, and they take pride in cry-
ing " in the most affecting manner."

A single effort of repression brought to bear on the
lacrymal glands does little, and indeed seems often to
lead to an opposite result. An old and experienced phy-
sician told me that he had always found that the only
means to check the occasional bitter weeping of ladies
who consulted him, and who themselves wished to de-
sist, was earnestly to beg them not to try, and to assure

8 See, for instance, Mr. Marshall's account of an idiot
in Philosoph. Transact. 1864, p. 526. With respect to
cretins, see Dr. Piderit, ' Mimik und Physiognomik,' 1867,
s. 61.

10 ' New Zealand and its Inhabitants,' 1855, p. 173,

156               EXPRESSION OF SUFFERING:        CHAP. VI.

them that nothing would relieve them so much as pro-
longed and copious crying.

The screaming of infants consists of prolonged ex-
pirations, with short and rapid, almost spasmodic In-
spirations, followed at a somewhat more advanced age
hy sobbing. According to Gratiolet,11 the glottis Is
chiefly affected during the act of sobbing. This sound
is heard " at the moment when the inspiration conquers
the resistance of the glottis, and the air rushes into the
chest/' But the whole act of respiration is likewise
spasmodic and violent. The shoulders are at the same
time'generally raised, as by this movement respiration
is rendered easier. With one of my infants, when sev-
enty-seven days old, the inspirations were so rapid and
strong that they approached in character to sobbing;
when 138 days old I first noticed distinct sobbing, which.
subsequently followed every bad crying-fit. The res-
piratory movements are partly voluntary and partly in-
voluntary, and I apprehend that sobbing is at least in
part due to children having some power to command
after early infancy their vocal organs and to stop their
screams, but from having less power over their respira-
tory muscles, these continue for a time to act in an in-
voluntary or spasmodic manner, after having "been
brought into violent action. Sobbing seems to be pecul-
iar to the human species; for the keepers in the Zoologi-
cal Gardens assure me that they have never heard a so"b
from any kind of monkey; though monkeys often scream
loudly whilst being chased and caught, and then pant
for a long time. We thus see that there is a close anal-
ogy between sobbing and the free shedding of tears; for
with children, sobbing does not commence during early
infancy, but afterwards comes on rather suddenly and

11 * Be la Physionomie,' 1865, p. 126.

CHAP. VI.                        WEEPING.                                157

then follows every Lad crying-fit,, until the hahit is
checked with advancing years.

On the cause of the contraction of the muscles round
the eyes during screaming. — -We have seen that infants
and young children, whilst screaming, invariably close
their eyes firmly,, "by the contraction of the surrounding
muscles, so that the skin becomes wrinkled all around.
With older children, and even with adults, whenever
there is violent and unrestrained crying, a tendency to
the contraction of these same muscles may be observed;
though this is often checked in order not to interfere
with vision.

Sir C. Bell explains12 this action in the following
manner: — "During every violent act of expiration,
whether in hearty laughter, weeping, coughing, or sneez-
ing, the eyeball is firmly compressed by the fibres of the
orbicularis; and this is a provision for supporting and
defending the vascular system of the interior of the eye
from a retrograde impulse communicated to the blood
in the veins at that time. When we contract the chest
and expel the air, there is a retardation of the blood in
the veins of the neck and head; and in the more power-
ful acts of expulsion, the blood not only distends the
vessels, but is even regurgitated into the minute
branches. Were the eye not properly compressed at that
time, and a resistance given to the shock, irreparable
injury might be inflicted on the delicate textures of the
interior of the eye." He further adds, " If we separate
the eyelids of a child to examine the eye, while it cries
and struggles with passion, by taking off the natural
support to the vascular system of the eye, and means of

12 "The Anatomy of Expression,' 1844, p. 106. See
also his paper in the ' Philosophical Transactions,' 1822,
p. 284, ibid. 1823, pp. 166 and 289. Also * The Nervous
System of the Human Body,' 3rd edit. 1836, p. 175.



guarding it against the rush of blood then occurring,
the conjunctiva becomes suddenly filled with blood, and
the eyelids everted."

Not only are the muscles round the eyes strongly
contracted, as Sir C. Bell states and as I have often ob-
served, during screaming, loud laughter, coughing, and
sneezing,. but during several other analogous actions.
A man contracts these muscles when he violently blows
his nose. I asked one of my boys to shout as loudly as
he possibly could, and as soon as he began, he firmly
contracted his orbicular muscles; I observed this repeat-
edly, and on asking him why he had every time so firmly
closed his eyes, I found that he was quite unaware of the
fact: he had acted instinctively or unconsciously.

It is not necessary, in order to lead to the contrac-
tion of these muscles, that air should actually be expelled
from the chest; it suffices that the muscles of the chest
and abdomen should contract with great force, whilst
by the closure of the glottis no air escapes. In violent
vomiting or retching the diaphragm is made to descend
by the chest being filled with air; it is then held in this
position by the closure of the glottis, " as well as by the
contraction of its own fibres." 13 The abdominal mus-
cles now contract strongly upon the stomach, its proper
muscles likewise contracting, and the contents are thus
ejected. During each effort of vomiting " the head be-
comes greatly congested, so that the features are red and
swollen, and the large veins of the face and temples visi-
bly dilated." At the same time, as I know from observa-
tion, the muscles round the eyes are strongly contracted.
This is likewise the case when the abdominal muscles

18 See Dr. Brinton's account of the act of vomiting-,
in Todd's Cyclop, of Anatomy and Physiology, 1859, vol.
v. Supplement, p. 318.

CHAP. VI.                        WEEPING.                               159

act downwards with unusual force in expelling the con-
tents of the intestinal canal.

The greatest exertion of the muscles of the body, if
those of the chest are not brought into strong action in
expelling or compressing the air within the lungs, does
not lead to the contraction of the muscles round the
eyes. I have observed my sons using great force in gym-
nastic exercises, as in repeatedly raising their suspended
bodies by their arms alone, and in lifting heavy weights
from the ground, but there was hardly any trace of con-
traction in the muscles round the eyes.

As the contraction of these muscles for the protection
of the e3~es during violent expiration is indirectly, as
we shall hereafter see, a fundamental element in several
of our most important expressions, I was extremely
anxious to ascertain how far Sir C. BelPs view could be
substantiated. Professor Bonders, of Utrecht,14 well
tnown as one of the highest authorities in Europe on
•vision and on the structure of the eye, has most Mndly
undertaken for me this investigation with the aid of the
many ingenious mechanisms of modern science, and has
published the results.15 He shows that during violent
expiration the external, the infra-ocular, and the retro-
ocular vessels of the eye are all affected in two ways,
namely by the increased pressure of the blood in the
arteries, and by the return of the blood in the veins

14  I   am greatly indebted to Mr.  Bowman for having-
introduced me to Prof. Bonders, and for his aid in per-
suading:  this great physiologist  to  undertake  the  inves-
tigation of the present subject.    I am likewise much in-
debted   to  Mr.  Bowman for having- given me, with  the
•utmost kindness, information on many points.

15   This   memoir first appeared  in  the   * Nederlandsch
Archief  voor Genees en  Natuurkunde/ Deel  5,  1870.    It
has been translated by Dr. W. D. Moore, under the title
of  " On   the Action  of the  Eyelids in  determination  of
Blood  from expiratory effort," in * Archives of Medicine,*
edited by Dr. L. S. Beale, 1870, vol. v. p. 20.

160               EXPRESSION OF SUFFERING:       CHJLP. VI

being impeded. It is, therefore, certain that both the
arteries and the veins of the eye are more or less dis-
tended during violent expiration. The evidence in de-
tail may be found in Professor Bonders' valuable me-
moir. We see the effects on the veins of the head, in.
their prominence, and in the purple colour of the face
of a man who coughs violently from being half choked.
I may mention, on the same authority, that the whole
eye certainly advances a little during each violent ex-
piration. This is due to the dilatation of the retro-ocular
vessels, and might have been expected from the intimate
connection of the eye and brain; the brain being known
to rise and fall with each respiration, when a portion of
the skull has been removed; and as may be seen along
the unclosed sutures of infants' heads. This also, I pre-
sume; is the reason that the eyes of a strangled man ap-
pear as if they were starting from their sockets.

With respect to the protection of the eye during vio-
lent expiratory efforts by the pressure of the eyelids, Pro-
fessor Bonders concludes from his various observations
that this action certainly limits or entirely removes the
dilatation of the vessels.16 At such times, he adds, we

is prof. Bonders remarks (ibid. p. 28), that, "After
injury to the eye, after operations, and in some forms
of internal inflammation, we attach great value to the
uniform support of the closed eyelids, and we increase
this in many instances by the application of a bandag-e.
In both eases we carefully endeavour to avoid great ex-
piratory pressure, the disadvantage of which is well known."
Mr. Bowman informs me that in the excessive photo-
phobia, accompanying* what is called scrofulous ophthal-
mia in children, when the light is so very painful that
during- weeks or months it is constantly excluded by the
most forcible closure of the lids, he has often been
struck on opening" the lids by the paleness of the eye,
—not an unnatural paleness, but an absence of the red-
ness that might have been expected when the surface
is somewhat inflamed, as is then usually the case; and
this paleness he is inclined to attribute to the forcible
closure of the eyelids.



not unfrequently see the hand involuntarily laid upon
the eyelids, as if the better to support and defend the

Nevertheless much evidence cannot at present be
advanced to prove that the eye actually suffers injury
from the want of support during violent expiration; but
there is some. It is " a fact that forcible expiratory
efforts in violent coughing or vomiting., and especially
in sneezing, sometimes give rise to ruptures of the little
(external) vessels" of the eye.17 With respect to the
internal vessels. Dr. Gunning has lately recorded a case
of exophthalmos in consequence of whooping-cough,
which in his opinion depended on the rupture of the
deeper vessels; and another analogous case has been re-
corded. But a mere sense of discomfort would probably
suffice to lead to the associated habit of protecting the
eyeball by the contraction of the surrounding muscles.
Even the expectation or chance of injury would probably
be sufficient, in the same manner as an object moving too
near the eye induces involuntary winking of the eyelids.
We may, therefore, safely conclude from Sir C. BelFs
observations, and more especially from the more careful
investigations by Professor Bonders, that the firm clo-
sure of the eyelids during the screaming of children is an
action full of meaning and of real service.

We have already seen that the contraction of the
orbicular muscles leads to the drawing up of the upper
lip, and consequently, if the mouth is kept widely open,
to the drawing down of the corners by the contraction
of the depressor muscles. The formation of the naso-
labial fold on the cheeks likewise follows from the draw-
ing up of the upper lip. Thus all the chief expressive
movements of the face during crying apparently result

1T Bonders, ibid. p. 36.



from the contraction of the muscles round the eyes. We
shall also find that the shedding of tears depends on, or
at least stands in some connection with, the contraction
of these same muscles.

In some of the foregoing cases, especially in those of .
sneezing and coughing, it is possible that the contrac-
tion of the orbicular muscles may serve in addition to
protect the eyes from too severe a jar or vibration. I
think so, because dogs and cats, in crunching hard bones,
always close their eyelids, and at least sometimes in
sneezing; though dogs do not do so whilst barking
loudly. Mr. Sutton carefully observed for me a young
orang and chimpanzee, and he found that both always
closed their eyes in sneezing and coughing, but not whilst
screaming violently. I gave a small pinch of snuff to a
monkey of the American division, namely, a Cebus, and
it closed its eyelids whilst sneezing; but not on a sub-
sequent occasion whilst littering loud cries.

Cause of the secretion of tears.—It is an important
fact which must be considered in any theory of the se-
cretion of tears from the mind being affected, that when-
ever the muscles round the eyes are strongly and invol-
untarily contracted in order to compress the blood-ves-
sels and thus to protect the eyes, tears are secreted, often
in sufficient abundance to roll down the cheeks. This
occurs under the most opposite emotions, and under no
emotion at all. The sole exception, and this is only a
partial one, to the existence of a relation between the in-
voluntary and strong contraction of these muscles and
the secretion of tears is that of young infants, who, whilst
screaming violently with their eyelids firmly closed, do
not commonly weep until they have attained the age
of from two to three or four months. Their eyes, how-
ever, become suffused with tears at a much earlier age.
It would appear, as already remarked, that the lacrymal


CHAP. VI.                        WEEPING.                                163

glands do not, from the want of practice or some other
cause, come to full functional activity at a very early
period of life. With children at a somewhat later age,
crying out or wailing from any distress is so regularly
accompanied by the shedding of tears, that weeping and
crying are synonymous terms.18

Under the opposite emotion of great joy or amuse-
rnent, as long as laughter is moderate there is hardly
any contraction of the muscles round the eyes, so that
there is no frowning; but when peals of loud laughter
are uttered, with rapid and violent spasmodic expira-
tions, tears stream down the face. I have more than
once noticed the face of a person, after a 'paroxysm of
violent laughter, and I could see that the orbicular mus-
cles and those running to the upper lip were still par-
tially contracted, which together with the tear-stained
cheeks gave to the upper half of the face an expression
not to be distinguished from that of a child still blub-
bering from grief. The fact of tears streaming clown the
face during violent laughter is common to all the races
of mankind, as we shall see in a future chapter.

In violent coughing, especially when a person is half-
choked, the face becomes purple, the veins distended,
the orbicular muscles strongly contracted, and. tears run
down the checks. Even after a fit of ordinary cough-
ing, almost every one has to wipe his eyes. In violent
vomiting or retching, as I have myself experienced and
seen in others, the orbicular muscles are strongly con-
tracted, and tears sometimes flow freely down the cheeks.
It has been suggested to me that this may be due to irri-
tating matter being injected into the nostrils, and caus-

18 Mr. Hensleigh Wedgwood (Diet, of English Ety-
mology, 1859, vol. i. p. 410) says, " the verb to wee]) comes
from Anglo-Saxon wop, the primary meaning of which
is simply outcry."                                             •

164:              EXPRESSION OF SUFFERING:       CHAP. VI.

ing by reflex action the secretion of tears.   Accordingly

I   / . | i                         I asked one of my informants, a surgeon, to attend to
r * _' *:.                         the effects of retching when nothing was thrown up
r '; ' *..'                         from the stomach; and, by an odd coincidence, he him-
f I"'      :                         self suffered the next morning from an attack of retch-
^       '•' '                         ing, and three days subsequently observed a lady under
f; i      !                           a similar attack; and he is certain that in neither case
\  l     <                           an atom of matter was ejected from the stomach; yet the

orbicular muscles were strongly contracted, and tears

;j  '                                freely secreted.   I can also speak positively to the ener-

'j                                 getic contraction of these same muscles round the eyes,

\ '                  .                and to the coincident free secretion of tears, when the

£ (r                                        abdominal muscles act with unusual force in a downward

i''' [                                 direction on the intestinal canal.

ff'                                     Yawning commences with a deep inspiration, fol-

',!                                 lowed by a long and forcible expiration; and at the

< ;            •                      same time almost all the muscles of the body are strongly

I1                                     contracted, including those round the eyes.   During this
\ t '                               act tears are often secreted, and I have seen them even
!                                  rolling down the cheeks.

i                                      I have frequently observed that when persons scratch
some point which itches intolerably, they forcibly close

j .*     x                            their eyelids; but they do not, as I believe, first draw a

"I                                   deep breath and then expel it with force; and I have

*   '                                never noticed that the eyes then become filled with tears;

i                                   but I am not prepared to assert that this does not occur.

|                                   The forcible closure of the eyelids is, perhaps, merely a
part of that general action by which almost all the mus-

,  ,                                cles of the body are at the same ftme rendered rigid.   It

] ,            '                      is quite different from the gentle closure of the eyes

I '                                 which often accompanies, as Gratiolet remarks;10 the

|'f                                 smelling a delicious odour, or the tasting a delicious

1 '>'                                 morsel, and which probably originates in the desire to

j |                                 shut out any disturbing impression through the eyes.

** 'Be la Physionomie,' 1865, p. 217.


CHJJP. VI.                       WEEDING.                             165

Professor Bonders writes to me to the following ef-
feet: '* I have observed some cases of a very curious
affection when, after a slight rub (attouchenient)^ for ex-
ample, from the friction of a coat, which caused neither
a wound nor a contusion, spasms of the orbicular inns-
cles occurred., with a very profuse flow of tears, lasting
about one hour. Subsequently, sometimes after an in-
terval of several weeks, violent spasms of the same mus-
cles re-occurred, accompanied by the secretion of tears,
together with primary or secondary redness of the eye/'
Mr. Bowman informs me that he has occasionally ob-
served closely analogous cases, and that, in some of these,
there was no redness or inflammation of the eyes.

I was anxious to ascertain whether there existed in
any of the lower animals a similar relation between the
contraction of the orbicular muscles during violent ex-
piration and the secretion of tears; but there are very
few animals which contract these muscles in a prolonged
manner, or which shed tears. The Macacus maurits*
which formerly wept so copiously in the Zoological Gar-
dens, would have been a fine case for observation; but
the two monkeys now there, and which are believed to
belong to the same species, do not weep. Nevertheless
they were carefully observed by Mr. Bartlett and myself,
whilst screaming loudly, and they seemed to contract
these muscles; but they moved about their cages so rap-
idly, that it was difficult to observe with certainty. -NTo
other monkey, as far as I have been able to ascertain,
contracts its orbicular muscles whilst screaming.

The Indian elephant is known sometimes to weep.
Sir E. Tennent, in describing these which he saw cap-
tured and bound in Ceylon, says, some " lay motionless
on the ground, with no other indication of suffering than
•the tears which suffused their eyes and flowed incessant-
ly." Speaking of another elephant he says^ "When

166              EXPRESSION OF SUFFERING:       CHAP. VI.

l%                               overpowered and made fast, his grief was most affecting;

?*l                         his violence sank to utter prostration, and he lay on the

*;;           ,              ground, uttering choking  cries,  with  tears  trickling

down his cheeks."20 In the Zoological Gardens the
keeper of the Indian elephants positively asserts that he
has several times seen tears rolling clown the face of the
old female, when distressed by the removal of the young
one. Hence I was extremely anxious to ascertain, as an
extension of the relation between the contraction of the
orbicular muscles and the shedding of tears in man,
whether elephants when screaming or trumpeting loudly
contract these muscles. At Mr. Bartlett's desire the
keeper ordered the old and the young elephant to trum-
pet; and we repeatedly saw in both animals that, just
as the trumpeting began, the orbicular muscles, espe-
cially the lower ones, were distinctly contracted. On a

20 ' Ceylon,' 3rd edit. 1859, vol. ii. pp. 364, 37G. I applied
to Mr. Thwaites, in Ceylon, for further information with
respect to the weeping of the elephant; and in conse-
quence received a letter from the Rev. Mr Glenie, who,
with others, kindly observed for me a herd of recently
captured elephants. These, when irritated, screamed vio-
lently; but it is remarkable that they never when thus
screaming contracted the muscles round the eyes. Nor
did they shed tears; and the native hunters asserted
that they had never observed elephants weeping. Never-
theless, it appears to me impossible to doubt Sir E. Ten-
nent's distinct details about their weeping, supported
as they are by the positive assertion of the keeper in the
Zoological Gardens. It is certain that the two elephants
in the Gardens, when they began to trumpet loudly, in-
variably contracted their orbicular muscles. I can recon-
cile these conflicting statements only by supposing that
the recently captured elephants in Ceylon, from being
enraged or frightened, desired to observe their perse-
cutors, and consequently did not contract their orbicular
muscles, so that their vision might not be impeded.
Those seen weeping by Sir E. Tennent were prostrate,
and had given up the contest in despair. The elephants
which trumpeted in the Zoological Gardens at the word
of command, were, of course, neither alarmed nor en-

CHAP. VI.                       WEEPING.

subsequent occasion the keeper made the old elephant
trumpet much more loudly., and invariably both the
upper and lower orbicular muscles were strongly con-
tracted, and now in an equal degree. It is a singular
fact that the African elephant, which, however, is so
different from the Indian species that it is placed by
some naturalists in a distinct sub-genus, when made on
two occasions to trumpet loudly., exhibited no trace of
the contraction of the orbicular muscles.

Prom the several foregoing cases with, respect to
Man, there can, I think, be no doubt that the contrac-
tion of the muscles round the eyes, during violent ex-
piration or when the expanded chest is forcibly com-
pressed, is, in some manner, intimately connected with
the secretion of tears. This holds good under widely
different emotions, and independently of any emotion.
It is not, of course, meant that tears cannot be secreted
without the contraction of these muscles; for it is notori-
ous that they are often freely shed with the eyelids not
closed, and with the brows unwrinkled. The contrac-
tion must be both involuntary and prolonged, as during
a choking fit, or energetic, as (hiring a sneeze. The mere
involuntary winking of the eyelids, though often re-
peated, does not bring tears into the eyes. Nor does the
voluntary and prolonged contraction of the several sur-
rounding muscles suffice. As the laerymal glands of
children are easily excited, I persuaded my own and sev-
eral other children of different ages to contract these
muscles repeatedly with their utmost force, and to con-
tinue doing so as long as they possibly could; but this
produced hardly any effect. There was sometimes a lit-
tle moisture in the eyes, but not more than apparently
could be accounted for by the squeezing out of the al-
ready secreted tears within the glands.

The nature of the relation between the involuntary

168               EXPRESSION OF SUFFERING:        CHAP. VI.

and energetic contraction of the muscles round the eyes,
and the secretion of tears, cannot be positively ascer-
tained, but a probable view may be suggested. The
primary function of the secretion of tears, together with
some mucus, is to lubricate the surface of the eye; and
a secondary one, as some believe, is to keep the nostrils
damp, so that the inhaled air may be moist,21 and like-
wise to favour the power of smelling. But another, and
at least equally important function of tears, is to wash
out particles of dust or other minute objects which may
get into the eyes. That this is of great importance is
clear from the cases in which the cornea has been ren-
dered opaque through inflammation, caused by particles
of dust not being removed, in consequence of the eye
and eyelid becoming immovable.22 The secretion of
tears from the irritation of any foreign body in the eye
is a reflex action;—that is, the body irritates a peripheral
nerve which sends an impression to certain sensory                  }

nerve-cells; these transmit an influence to other cells,                  I

and these again to the lacrymal glands.   The influence                  *.

transmitted to these glands causes, as there is good rea-                   ;

son to believe, the relaxation of the muscular coats of                   »

the smaller arteries; this allows more blood to permeate                   I

the glandular tissue, and this induces a free secretion of                   (

tears.   When the small arteries of the face, including                   \

those of the retina, are relaxed under very different cir-                   j

eumstances, namely, during an intense blush, the lacry-                   |

mal glands are sometimes affected in a like manner, for                   j

the eyes become suffused with tears.

It is difficult to conjecture how many reflex actions
have originated, but, in relation to the present case of

21  Bergeon, as quoted in the * Journal of Anatomy and
Physiology,' Nov. 1871, p. 235.

22  See, for instance, a case given by Sir Charles Bell,
'Philosophical Transactions,' 1823, p. 177.

CHAP. VI.                      WEEPING.                             169

the affection of the lacrymal glands through, irritation
of the surface of the eye, it may be worth remarking
that., as soon as some primordial form became semi-
terrestrial in its habits, and was liable to get particles
of dus't into its eyes, if these were not washed out they
would cause much irritation; and on the principle of
the radiation of nerve-force to adjoining nerve-cells, the
lacrymal glands would be stimulated to secretion. As
this would often recur, and as nerve-force readily passes
along accustomed channels, a slight irritation would
ultimately suffice to cause a free secretion of tears.

As soon as by this, or by some other means, a reflex
action of this nature had been established and rendered
eas)7", other stimulants applied to the surface of the eye
—such as a cold wind, slow inflammatory action, or a
blow on the eyelids—would cause a copious secretion
of tears, as we know to be the case. The glands are also
excited into action through the irritation of adjoining
parts. Thus when the nostrils are irritated by pungent
vapours, though the eyelids may be kept firmly closed,
tears are copiously secreted; and this likewise follows
from a blow on the nose, for instance from a boxing-
glove. A stinging switch on the face produces, as I have
seen, the same effect. In these latter eases the secretion
of tears is an incidental result, and of no direct service.
As all these parts of the face, including the lacrymal
glands, are supplied with branches of the same nerve,
namely, the fifth, it is in some degree intelligible
that the effects of the excitement of any one branch
should spread to the nerve-cells or roots of the other

The internal parts of the eye likewise act, under cer-
tain conditions, in a reflex manner on the lacrymal
glands. The following statements have been kindly
communicated to me by Mr. Bowman; but the subject

1^0               EXPRESSION OF SUFFERING:       CHAP. VI.

is a very intricate one,, as all the parts of the eye are
so intimately related together, and are so sensitive to
various stimulants. A strong light acting on the retina,
when in a normal condition., has very little tendency to
cause lacrymation; but with unhealthy children having
small, old-standing ulcers on the cornea, the retina be-
comes excessively sensitive to light, and exposure even
to common daylight causes forcible and sustained closure
of the lids, and a profuse now of tears. When persons
who ought to begin the use of convex glasses habitually
strain the waning power of accommodation, an undue
secretion of tears very often follows, and the retina is
liable to become unduly sensitive to light. In general,
morbid affections of the surface of the eye, and of the
ciliary structures concerned in the accommodative act,
are prone to be accompanied with excessive secretion of
tears. Hardness of the eyeball, not rising to infiamma-
tion, but implying a want of balance between the fluids
poured out and again taken up by the intra-ocular ves-
sels, is not usually attended with any lacrymation. When
the balance is on the other side, and the eye becomes
too soft, there is a greater tendency to lacrymation.
Finally, there are numerous morbid states and structural
alterations of the eyes, and even terrible inflammations,
which may be attended with little or no secretion of

It also deserves notice, as indirectly bearing on our
subject, that the eye and adjoining parts are subject to
an extraordinary number of reflex and associated move-
ments, sensations, and actions, besides those relating to
the lacrymal glands. When a bright light strikes the
retina of one eye alone, the iris contracts, but the iris
of the other eye moves after a measurable interval of
time. The iris likewise moves in accommodation to near
or distant vision, and when the two eyes are made to

CHAP. VI.                       WEEPING.                               171

converge.23 Every one knows how irresistibly the eye-
brows are drawn down under an intensely bright light.
The eyelids also involuntarily wink when an object is
moved near the eyes, or a sound is suddenly heard. The
well-known case of a bright light causing some persons
to sneeze is even more curious; for nerve-force here radi-
ates from certain nerve-cells in connection with the
retina, to the sensory nerve-cells of the nose, causing
it to tickle; and from these, to the cells which command
the various respiratory muscles (the orbiculars included)
which expel the air in so peculiar a manner that it rashes
through the nostrils alone.

To return to our point: why are tears secreted during
a screaming-fit or other violent expiratory efforts? As
a slight blow on the eyelids causes a copious secretion
of tears, it is at least possible that the spasmodic con-
traction of the eyelids, by pressing strongly on the eye-
ball, should in a similar manner cause some secretion.
This seems possible, although the voluntary contraction
of the same muscles does not 'produce any such effect.
We know that a man cannot voluntarily sneeze or cough
.with nearly the same force as he does automatically; and
so it is with the contraction of the orbicular muscles:
Sir C. Bell experimented on them, and found that by
suddenly and forcibly closing the eyelids in the dark,
sparks of light are seen, like those caused by tapping
.the eyelids with the fingers; " but in sneezing the com-
.pression is both more rapid and more forcible, and the
sparks are more brilliant." That these sparks are due
to the contraction of the eyelids is clear, because if they
" are held open during the act of sneezing, no sensation
of light will be experienced." In the peculiar cases re-

23 See, on these several points, Prof. Bonders ' On the
Anomalies of Accommodation and Refraction of the Eye,'
1864, p. 573.

I                              172              EXPRESSION OF SUFFERING:       CHAP. VI.

M                           ferred to by Professor Bonders and Mr. Bowman., we

,;|                           have seen that some weeks after the eye has been very

>,                           slightly injured, spasmodic contractions of the eyelids

p                           ensue, and these are accompanied by a profuse flow of

f                            tears.   In the act of yawning, the tears are apparently

!             .               due solely to the spasmodic contraction of the muscles

round the eyes. Notwithstanding these latter cases, it
seems hardly credible that the pressure of the eyelids
on the surface of the eye, although effected spasmodi-
cally and therefore with much greater force than can
be done voluntarily, should be sufficient to cause by re-
flex action the secretion of tears in the many cases in
which this occurs during violent expiratory efforts.

Another cause may come conjointly into play. We
have seen that the internal parts of the eye, under cer-
tain conditions, act in a reflex manner on the lacrymal
glands. We know that during violent expiratory efforts
the pressure of the arterial blood within the vessels of
the eye is increased, and that the return of the venous
blood is impeded. It seems, therefore, not improbable
that the distension of the ocular vessels, thus induced,
might act by reflection on the lacrymal glands—the ef-
fects due to .the spasmodic pressure of the eyelids on the
surface of the eye being thus increased.

In considering how far this view is probable, we
should bear in mind that the eyes of infants have been
acted on in this double manner during numberless gen-
erations, whenever they have screamed; and on the prin-
ciple of nerve-force readily passing along accustomed
channels, even a moderate compression of the eyeballs
and a moderate distension of the ocular vessels would
ultimately come, through habit, to act on the glands.
We have an analogous ease in the orbicular muscles
being almost always contracted in some slight degree,
even during a gentle crying-fit, when there can be no

CHAP. VI.                        WEEPIK0.                              173

distension of the vessels and no uncomfortable sensation
excited within the eyes.

Moreover, when complex actions or movements have
long been performed in strict association together, and
these are from any cause at first voluntarily and after-
wards habitually checked, then if the proper exciting
conditions occur, any part of the action or movement
which, is least under the control of the will, will often
still be involuntarily performed. The secretion by a
gland is remarkably free from the influence of the will;
therefore, when with the advancing age of the individ-
ual, or with the advancing culture of the race, the habit
of crying out or screaming is restrained, and there is
consequently no distension of the blood-vessels of the
j                      eye, it may nevertheless well happen that tears should

j                       still be secreted.   We may see, as lately remarked, the

muscles round the eyes of a person who reads a pathetic
I                       story, twitching or trembling in so slight a degree as

hardly to be detected.   In this case there has been no
screaming and no distension of the blood-vessels, yet
1                      through habit certain nerve-cells send a small amount

T                      of nerve-force to the cells commanding the muscles

i                      round the eyes; and they likewise send some to the cells

commanding the lacrymal glands, for the eyes often
become at the same time just moistened with tears.
If the twitching of the muscles round the eyes and the
secretion of tears had been completely prevented, never-
theless it is almost certain that there would have been
some tendency to transmit nerve-force in these same
directions; and as the lacrymal glands are remarkably
free from the control of the will, they would be emi-
nently liable still to act, thus betraying, though there
were no other outward signs, the pathetic thoughts
which were passing through the person's mind.

As a further illustration of the view here advanced,,

I \

)'' £                                174.               EXPRESSION OF SUFFERING:       CHAP. VI.


I may remark that if, during an early period of life, when
habits of all kinds are readily established, our infants,
when pleased, had been accustomed to utter loud peals
of laughter (during which the vessels of their eyes are
distended) as often and as continuously as they have
yielded when distressed to screaming-fits, then it is prob-
able that in after life tears would have been as copiously
and as regularly secreted under the one state of mind
as under the other. Gentle laughter, or a smile, or even
a pleasing thought, would have sufficed to cause a mod-
erate secretion of tears. There does indeed exist an evi-
dent tendency in this direction, as will be seen in a future
chapter, when we treat of the tender feelings. With the
Sandwich Islanders, according to Freycinet,24 tears are
actually recognized as a sign of happiness; but we should
require better evidence on this head than that of a pass-
ing voyager. So again if our infants, during many gen-
erations, and each of them during several years, had al-
most daily suffered from prolonged choking-fits, during
which the vessels of the eye are distended and tears
copiously secreted, then it is probable, such is the force
of associated habit, that during after life the mere
thought of a choke, without any distress of mind, would
have sufficed to bring tears into our eyes.

To sum up this chapter, weeping is probably the re-
sult of some such chain of events as follows. Children,
when wanting food or suffering in any way, cry out
loudly, like the young of most other animals, partly as a
call to their parents for aid, and partly from any great
exertion serving as a relief. Prolonged screaming in-
evitably leads to the gorging of the blood-vessels of the
eye; and this will have led, at first consciously and at

24 Quoted by Sir J. Liibbock, * Prehistoric Times,' 1865,
p. 458.




last habitually, to the contraction of the muscles round
the eyes in order to protect them. _ At the same time the
spasmodic pressure on the surface of the eye, and the
distension of the vessels within the eye, without neces-
sarily entailing any conscious sensation, will have af-
fected, through reflex action, the lacrymal glands.
Finally, through the three principles of nerve-force read-
ily passing along accustomed channels—of association,
which is so widely extended in its power—and of cer-
tain actions, being more under the control of the will
than others—it has come to pass that suffering readily
causes the secretion of tears, without being necessarily
accompanied ty any other action.

Although In accordance with this view we must look
at weeping as an incidental result, as purposeless as the
secretion of tears from a blow outside the eye, or as a
sneeze from the retina being affected by a bright light,
yet this does not present any difficulty in our under-
standing how the secretion of tears serves as a relief to
suffering. And by as much as the weeping is more vio-
lent or hysterical, by so much will the relief be greater,
—on the same principle that the writhing of the whole
body, the grinding of the teeth, and the uttering of
piercing shrieks, all give relief under an agony of pain.

176                    EXPRESSION OF GRIEF:         CHAP. VII.



General effect of grief on the system—Obliquity of  the
eyebrows "under suffering*—On the cause of the   ob-
liquity of the eyebrows—On the depression of   the
corners of the mouth.

AFTER the mind lias suffered from an acute parox-
ysm of grief, and the cause still continues, we fall into a
state of low spirits; or we may "be utterly cast down and
dejected. Prolonged bodily pain, if not amounting to
an agony, generally leads to the same state of mind.
If we expect to suffer, we are anxious; if we have no
hope of relief, we despair.

Persons suffering from excessive grief often seek re-
lief by violent and almost frantic movements, as de-
scribed in a former chapter; but when their suffering is
somewhat mitigated, yet prolonged, they no longer wish
for action, but remain motionless and passive, or may
occasionally rock themselves to and fro. The circula-
tion becomes languid; the face pale; the muscles flaccid;
the eyelids droop; the head hangs on the contracted
chest; the lips, cheeks, and lower jaw all sink down-
wards from their own weight. Hence all the features
are lengthened; and the face of a person who hears bad
news is said to fall. A party of natives in Tierra del
Fuego endeavoured to explain to us that their friend,

CHAP. VII.             OBLIQUE EYEBROWS.                       177

the captain of a sealing vessel, was out of spirits., by
pulling down their cheeks with "both hands, so as to
make their faces as long as possible, Mr. Bunnet in-
forms me that the Australian aborigines when out of
spirits have a chop-fallen appearance. After prolonged
suffering the eyes become dull and lack expression, and
are often slightly suffused with tears. The eyebrows
not rarely are rendered oblique, which is due to their
inner ends being raised. This produces peculiarly-
formed wrinkles on the forehead, which are very differ-
ent from those of a simple frown; though in some cases
a frown alone may be present. The corners of the mouth
are drawn downwards, which is so universally recognized
as a sign of being out of spirits, that it is almost pro-

The breathing becomes slow and feeble, and is often
interrupted by deep sighs. As Gratiolet remarks, when-
ever our attention is long concentrated on any subject,
we forget to breathe, and then relieve ourselves by a
deep inspiration; but the sighs of a sorrowful person,
owing to his slow respiration and languid circulation,
are eminently characteristic.1 As the grief of a person
in this state occasionally recurs and increases into a par-
oxysm, spasms affect the respiratory muscles, and he
feels as if something, the so-called glolus hystericus^
was rising in his throat. These spasmodic movements
are clearly allied to the sobbing of children, and are
remnants of those severer spasms which occur when a
person is said to choke from excessive grief.2

1   The  above   descriptive  remarks   are  taken  in   part
from  my  own   observations,   but   chiefly   from   Gratiolet
(' De la Physionomie,' pp. 53, 337;   on Sighing, 232), who
has well treated this whole subject.    See, also, Huschke,

* Mimices   et   Phvsiognomices,   Fragmentum   Physiologl-
cum,' 1821, p. 21." On the dulness of the eyes, Dr. Piderit,

* Mimik und Physiognomik,' 1867, s. 65.

2  On the action of grief on the organs of respiration,

178                   EXPKESSION OF GRIEF:          CHAP. VII,

Obliquity of the eyebrows.—Two points alone in the
above description require further elucidation, and these
are very curious ones; namely, the raising of the inner
ends of the eyebrows, and the drawing down of the cor-
ners of the mouth. With respect to the eyebrows, they
may occasionally be seen to assume an oblique position
in persons suffering from deep dejection or anxiety; for
instance, I have observed this movement in a mother
whilst speaking about her sick son; and it is sometimes
excited by quite trifling or momentary causes of real or
pretended distress. The eyebrows assume this position
owing to the contraction of certain muscles (namely, the
orbiculars, corrugators, and pyramidals of the nose,
which together tend to lower and contract the eyebrows)
being partially checked by the more powerful action, of
the central fasciae of the frontal muscle. These latter
fascia?, by their contraction raise the inner ends alone
of the eyebrows; and as the corrugators at the same time
draw the eyebrows together, their inner ends become
puckered into a fold or lump. This fold is a highly char-
acteristic point in the appearance of the eyebrows when
r-endered oblique, as may be seen in figs. 2 and 5, Plate
II. The eyebrows are at the same time somewhat rough-
ened, owing to the hairs being made to project. Dr. J.
Crichton Browne has also often noticed in melancholic
patients who keep their eyebrows persistently oblique,
" a peculiar acute arching of the upper eyelid." A trace
of this may be observed by comparing the right and left
eyelids of the young man in the photograph (fig. 2, Plate
II.); for he was not able to act equally on both eyebrows.
Tjais is;also shown by the unequal furrows on the two
sides of Ms forehead. The acute arching- of the eyelids

see moire especially Sir C. Bell, * Anatomy of Expression,'
3rd. edit. 1844, p. 151.



CHAP. VII.            OBLIQUE EYEBROWS.                     179

depends, I believe, on the inner end alone of the eye-
brows being raised; for when the whole eyebrow is ele-
vated and arched, the upper eyelid follows in a slight
degree the same movement.

But the most conspicuous result of the opposed con-
traction of the above-named muscles, is exhibited by the
peculiar furrows formed on the forehead. These mus-
cles, when thus in conjoint yet opposed action, may be
called, for the sake of brevity, the grief-muscles. When
a person elevates his eyebrows by the contraction of the
whole frontal muscle, transverse wrinkles extend across
the whole breadth of the forehead; but in the present
case the middle fascia alone are contracted; consequent-
ly, transverse furrows are formed across the middle part
alone of the forehead. The skin over the exterior parts
of both eyebrows is at the same time drawn downwards
and smooth, by the contraction of the outer portions of
the orbicular muscles. The eyebrows are likewise
brought together through the simultaneous contraction
of the corrugators;3 and this latter action generates

8 In the foregoing* remarks on the manner in which
the eyebrows are made oblique, I have followed what
seems to be the universal opinion of all the anatomists,
whose works I have consulted on the action of the above-
named muscles, or with whom I have conversed. Hence
throughout this work I shall take a similar view of the
action of the corrugator supcrcilii, orbieitlaris, pyramidalis
nasi, and frontalis muscles. Dr. Duchenne, however, be-
lieves, and every conclusion at which he arrives deserves
serious consideration, that it is the corrugator, called by
him the sourcilier, which raises the inner corner of the
eyebrows and is antagonistic to the upper and inner
part of the orbicular muscle, as well as to the pyramidalis
nasi (see Mecanisme de la Phys. Humaine, 1862, folio, art.
v,, text and figures 19 to 29: octavo edit. 1862, p. 43 text).
He admits, however, that the corrugator draws together
the eyebrows, causing vertical furrows above the base of
the nose, or a frown. He further believes that towards
the outer two-thirds of the eyebrow the corrugator acts
in conjunction with the upper orbicular muscle; both
here standing in antagonism to the frontal muscle. I


''!/'!                              180                     EXPRESSION OF GRIEF:           CHAP. VII.


vertical furrows, separating the exterior and lowered                     j

part of the skin of the forehead from the central and                     j

raised part.   The union of these vertical furrows with                     j

the central and transverse furrows (see figs. 2" and 3)                     j

produces a mark on the forehead which has been com-                     i

pared to a horse-shoe; but the furrows more strictly
form three sides of a quadrangle. They are often con-                     i

spicuous on the foreheads of adult or nearly adult per-                     '

sons, when their eyebrows are made oblique; but with
young children, owing to their skin not easily wrinkling,                     |

they are rarely seen, or mere traces of them can be de-                     I


These peculiar furrows are best represented in fig. 3,                     i

Plate IIV on the forehead of a young lady who has the
power in an unusual degree of voluntarily acting on the
requisite muscles. As she was absorbed in the attempt,
whilst being photographed, her expression was not at
all one of grief; I have therefore given the forehead
alone. Fig. 1 on the same plate, copied from Dr. Du-
chenne's work,4 -represents, on a reduced scale, the face,
in its natural state, of a young man who was a good
actor. In fig. 2 he is shown simulating grief, but the

am unable to understand, judging from Henle's drawings                       I

(woodcut, fig. 3), how the corrugator can act in the man-                       ;

ner described by Duchenne.    See,  also,  on this subject,                       j

Prof. Bonders' remarks in the * Archives of Medicine,'
1870, vol. v. p. 34. Mr. J. Wood, who is so well known
for his careful study of the muscles of the human frame,
informs me that he believes the account which I have                       ;

given of the action of the corrugator to be correct. But
this is not a point of any importance with respect to
the expression which is caused by the obliquity of the
eyebrows, nor of much importance to the theory of its
origin.                                                                                                       :

* I am greatly indebted to Dr. Duchenne for permission                       -,

to have these two photographs (figs. 1 and 2) reproduced
by the heliotype process from his work in folio. Many
of the foregoing remarks on the furrowing of the skin,
when the eyebrows are rendered oblique, are taken from
his excellent discussion on this subject.

CHAP. VII.            OBLIQUE EYEBROWS.                      181

two eyebrows, as before remarked, are not equally acted
on. That the expression is true, may be inferred from
the fact that out of fifteen persons, to whom the origi-
nal photograph was shown, without any clue to what was
intended being given them, fourteen immediately an-
swered, " despairing sorrow," " suffering endurance,"
"melancholy/* and so forth. The history of fig. 5 is
rather curious: I saw the photograph in a shop-window,
and took it to Mr. Eejlander for the sake of finding out
by whom it had been made; remarking to him how
pathetic the expression was. He answered, " I made it,
and it was likely to be pathetic, for the boy in a few min-
utes burst out crying." He then showed rne a photo-
graph of the same boy in a placid state, which I have
had (fig. 4) reproduced. In fig. 6, a trace of obliquity
in the eyebrows may be detected; but this figure, as well
as fig. 7, is given to show the depression of the corners
of the mouth, to which subject I shall presently refer.

Pew persons, without some practice, can voluntarily
act on their grief-muscles; but after repeated trials a
considerable number succeed, whilst others never can.
The degree of obliquity in the eyebrows, whether as-
sumed voluntarily or unconsciously, differs much in dif-
ferent persons. With some who apparently have unusu-
ally strong pyramidal muscles,, the contraction of the
central fasciae of the frontal muscle, although it may be
energetic-, as shown by the quadrangular furrows on the
forehead, does not raise the inner ends of the eyebrows,
but only prevents their being so much lowered as they
otherwise would have been. As far as I have been able
to observe, the grief-muscles are brought into action
much more frequently by children and women than by
men. They are rarely acted on, at least with grown-up
persons, from bodily pain, but almost exclusively from
mental distress. Two persons who, after some practice,

182                  EXPRESSION OF GRIEF:          CHAP. VII


%|                        succeeded in acting on their grief-muscles, found by                   \

m                        looking at a mirror that when they made their eyebrows                   ;

lf<l                         oblique, they unintentionally at the same time depressed                    )

jV;'                         the corners of their mouths; and this is often the case

ljf                        when the expression is naturally assumed.

j i'                              The power to bring the grief-muscles freely into plajr

/ ]                        appears to be hereditary, like almost every other human

faculty.   A lady belonging to a family famous for hav-                    j

ing produced an extraordinary number of great actors                    f

and actresses, and who can herself give this expression                    [

" with singular precision/5 told Dr. Crichton Browne
that all her family had possessed the power in a remark-
able degree. The same hereditary tendency is said to
have extended, as I likewise hear from Dr. Browne, to
the last descendant of the family, which gave rise to                    |

Sir Walter Scott's novel of ' Eed Gauntlet;'   but the                    |

hero is described as contracting his forehead into a horse-                    }

, '                        shoe mark from any strong emotion.   I have also seen                    j

a young woman whose forehead seemed almost habit-
ually thus contracted, independently of any emotion                    I
being at the time felt.                                                                              |

The grief-muscles are not very frequently brought
into play; and as the action is often momentary, it easily
^ ,                        escapes observation.   Although the expression, when ob-

served, is universally and instantly recognized as that
of grief or anxiety, yet not one person out of a thousand
who has never studied the subject, is able to say precisely
what change passes over the sufferer's face. Hence prob-
ably it is that this expression is not even alluded to, as
far as I have noticed, in any work of fiction, with the
exception of ' Eed Gauntlet' and -of one other novel;
and the authoress of the latter, as I am informed, be-
longs to the famous family of actors just alluded to; so
5                         that her attention may have been specially called to the

I \                       subject.

CHAP. VII.             OBLIQUE EYEBROWS.                     183

The ancient Greek sculptors were familiar with the
expression, as shown in the statues of the Laocoon and
Arrctino; but, as Duchenne remarks, they carried the
transverse furrows across the whole breadth of the fore-
head, and thus committed a great anatomical mistake:
this is likewise the case in some modern statues. It is,
however, more probable that these wonderfully accurate
observers intentionally sacrificed truth for the sake of
beauty, than that they made a mistake; for rectangular
furrows on the forehead would not have had a grand
appearance on the marble. The expression, in its fully
developed condition, is, as far as I can discover, not
often represented in pictures by the old masters, no
doubt owing to the same cause; but % lady who is per-
fectly familiar with this expression, informs me that in
Fra Angelico's 'Descent from the Cross/ in Florence, it
is clearly exhibited in one of the figures on the right-
hand; and I could add a few other instances.

Dr. Grichton Browne, at my request, closely attended
to this expression in the numerous insane patients under
his care in the West Biding Asylum; and he is familiar
with Duchcnne's photographs of the action of the grief-
muscles. He informs me that they may constantly be
seen in energetic action in cases of melancholia, and
especially of hypochondria; and that the persistent lines
or furrows, due to their habitual contraction, are char-
acteristic of the physiognomy of the insane belonging
to these two classes. Dr. Browne carefully observed for
me during a considerable period three cases of hypochon-
dria, iu which the grief-muscles were persistently con-
tracted. In one of these, a widow, aged 51, fancied that
she had lost all her viscera, and that her whole body was
empty. She wore an expression of great distress, and
beat her semi-closed hands rhythmically together for
hours. The grief-muscles were permanently contracted,







and the upper eyelids arched. This condition lasted for
months; she then recovered, and her coimtenance re-
sumed its natural expression. A second case presented
nearly the same peculiarities., with the addition that the
corners of the inouth were depressed.

Mr. Patrick Nicol has also kindly observed for me
several cases in the Sussex Lunatic Asylum, and has
communicated to me full details with respect to three
of them; but they need not here be given. Erom his
observations on melancholic patients, Mr. Nicol con-
cludes that the inner ends of the eyebrows are almost
always more or less raised, with the wrinkles on the fore-
head more or less plainly marked. In the case of one
young woman, these wrinkles were observed to be in
constant slight play or movement. In some cases the
corners of the mouth are depressed, but often only in
a slight degree. Some amount of difference in the ex-
pression of the several melancholic patients could almost
always be observed. The eyelids generally droop; and
the skin near their outer corners and beneath them is
wrinkled. The naso-labial fold, which runs from the
wings of the nostrils to the corners of the mouth, and
which is so conspicuous in blubbering children, is often
plainly marked in these patients.

Although with the insane the grief-muscles often act
persistently; yet in ordinary cases they are sometimes
brought unconsciously into momentary action by ludi-
crously slight causes. A gentleman rewarded a young
lady by an absurdly small present; she pretended to be
offended, and as she upbraided him, her eyebrows be-
came extremely oblique, with the forehead properly
wrinkled. Another young lady and a youth, both in
the highest spirits, were eagerly talking together with
extraordinary rapidity; and I noticed that, as often as
the young lady was beaten, and could not get out her

CHAP.VIL            OBLIQUE EYEBROWS.                      185

words fast enough, her eyebrows went obliquely up-
wards, and rectangular furrows were formed on her fore-
head. She thus each time hoisted a flag of distress; and
this she did half-a-dozen times in the course of a few
minutes. I made no remark on the subject, but on a sub-
sequent occasion I asked her to act on her grief-muscles;
another girl who was present, and who could do so vol-
untarily, showing her what was intended. She tried re-
peatedly, but utterly failed; yet so slight a cause of dis-
tress as not being able to talk quickly enough, sufficed
to bring these muscles over and over again into energetic

The expression of grief, due to the contraction of the
grief-muscles, is by no means confined to Europeans,
but appears to be common to all the races of mankind.
I have, at least, received trustworthy accounts in re-
gard to Hindoos, Dhangars (one of the aboriginal hill-
tribes of India, and therefore belonging to a quite dis-
tinct race from the Hindoos), Malays, Negroes and Aus-
tralians. With respect to the latter, two observers an-
swer my query in the affirmative, but enter into no
details. Mr. Taplin, however, appends to my descriptive
remarks the words " this is exact/' With respect to
negroes, the lady who told me of Pra Angelico's picture,
saw a negro towing a boat on the Nile, and as he encoun-
tered an obstruction, she observed his grief-muscles in
strong action, with the middle of the forehead well wrin-
kled. Mr. Geach watched a Malay man in Malacca, with
the corners of his mouth much depressed, the eyebrows
oblique, with deep short grooves on the forehead. This
expression lasted for a very short time; and Mr. Geach
remarks it " was a strange one, very much like a person
about to cry at some great loss."

In India Mr. II. Erskine found that the natives were
familiar with this expression; and Mr. J. Scott, of the

186                   EXPRESSION OF G-RIEF:          CHAP. VII.

Botanic Gardens, Calcutta, has obligingly sent me a full
description of two cases. He observed during some time,
himself unseen, a very young Dhangar woman from N"ag-
pore, the wife of one of the gardeners, nursing her baby
who was at the point of death; and he distinctly saw the
eyebrows raised at the inner corners, the eyelids droop-
ing, the forehead wrinkled in the middle, the mouth
slightly open, with the corners much depressed. He
then came from behind a screen of plants and spoke to
the poor woman, who started, burst into a bitter flood
of tears, and besought him to cure her baby. The sec-
ond case was that of a Hindustani man, who from illness
and poverty was compelled to sell his favourite goat.
After receiving the money, he repeatedly looked at the
money in his hand and then at the goat, as if doubting
whether he would not return it. He went to the goat,
which was tied up ready to be led away, and the animal
reared up and licked his hands. His eyes then wavered
from side to side; his " mouth was partially closed, with
the corners very decidedly depressed." At last the poor
man seemed to make up his mind that he must part with
his goat, and then, as Mr. Scott saw, the eyebrows be-
came slightly oblique, with the characteristic puckering
or swelling at the inner ends, but the wrinkles on the
forehead were not present. The man stood thus for a
minute, then heaving a deep sigh, burst into tears, raised
up his two hands, blessed the goat, turned round, and
without looking again, went away.

On the cause of the obliquity of the eyebrows under
suffering.—During several years no expression seemed
to me so utterly perplexing as this which we are here
considering. Why should grief or anxiety cause the
central fasciae alone of the frontal muscle together with
those round the eyes, to contract? Here we seem to
have a complex movement for the sole purpose of ex-

CHAP. VII.              OBLIQUE EYEBROWS.                      187

pressing grief; and yet it is a comparatively rare expres-
sion, and often overlooked. I believe the explanation is
not so difficult as it at first appears. Dr. Duchenne
gives a photograph of the young man before referred to,
who, when looking upwards at a strongly illuminated
surface, involuntarily contracted his grief-muscles in an
exaggerated manner. I had entirely forgotten this
photograph, when on a very bright day with the sun
behind me, I met, whilst on horseback, a girl whose eye-
brows, as she looked up at me, became extremely oblique,
with the proper furrows on her forehead. I have ob-
served the same movement under similar circumstances
on several subsequent occasions. On my return home
I made three of my children, without giving them any
clue to my object, look as long and as attentively as they
could, at the summit of a tall tree standing against an
extremely bright sky. With all three, the orbicular,
corrugator, and pyramidal muscles were energetically
contracted, through reflex action, from the excitement
of the retina, so that their eyes might be protected from
the bright light. But they tried their utmost to look
upwards; and now a curious struggle, with spasmodic
twitchings, could be observed between the whole or only
the central portion of the frontal muscle, and the sev-
eral muscles which serve to lower the eyebrows and close
the eyelids. The involuntary contraction of the pyram-
idal caused the basal part of their noses to be trans-
versely and deeply wrinkled. In one of the three chil-
dren, the whole eyebrows were momentarily raised and
lowered by the alternate contraction of the whole frontal
muscle and of the muscles surrounding the eyes, so that
the whole breadth of the forehead was alternately wrin-
kled and smoothed. In the other two children the fore-
head became wrinkled in the middle part alone, rectan-
gular furrows being thus produced; and the eyebrows

188                    EXPRESSION OF GRIEF:          CHAP. VII.

were rendered oblique, with their inner extremities puck-
ered and swollen;—in the one child in a slight degree,
in the other in a strongly marked manner. This differ-
ence in the obliquity of the eyebrows apparently de-
pended on a difference in their general mobility, and
in the strength of the pyramidal muscles. In both these
cases the eyebrows and forehead were acted on under
the influence of a strong light, in precisely the same
manner, in every characteristic detail, as under the in-
fluence of grief or anxiety.

Duchenne states that the pyramidal muscle of the
nose is less under the control of the will than are the
other muscles round the eyes. He remarks that the
young man who could so well act on his grief-muscles,
as well as on most of his other facial muscles, could not
contract the pyramidals.5 This power, however, no
doubt differs in different persons. The pyramidal mus-
cle serves to draw down the skin of the forehead be-
tween the eyebrows, together with their inner extremi-
ties. The central fasciae of the frontal are the antago-
nists of the pyramidal; and if the action of the latter is
to be specially checked, these central fasciae must be
contracted. So that with persons having powerful pyram-
idal muscles, if there is under the influence of a bright
light an unconscious desire to prevent the lowering of
the eyebrows, the central fasciae of the frontal muscle
must be brought into play; and their contraction, if suf-
ficiently strong to overmaster the pyramidals, together
with the contraction of the corrugator and orbicular
muscles, will act in the manner just described on the
eyebrows and forehead.

"When children scream or cry out, they contract, as
we know, the orbicular, corrugator, and pyramidal mus-

5 Mecanisme de la Phys. Hiimame, Album, p. 15.




cles, primarily for the sake of compressing their eyes,
and thus protecting them from being gorged with blood,
and secondarily through habit. I therefore expected
to find with children, that when they endeavoured either
to prevent a crying-fit from coming on, or to stop crying,
they would check the contraction of the above-named
muscles, in the same manner as when looking upwards
at a bright light; and consequently that the central fas-
ciae of the frontal muscle would often be brought into
play. Accordingly, I began myself to observe children
at such times, and asked others, including some medical
men, to do the same. It is necessary to observe care-
fully, as the peculiar opposed action of these muscles
is not nearly so plain in children, owing to their fore-
heads not easily wrinkling, as in adults. But I soon
found that the grief-muscles were very frequently
brought into distinct action on these occasions. It would
be superfluous to give all the cases which have been ob-
served; and I will specify only a few. A little girl, a
year and a half old, was teased by some other children,
and before bursting into tears her eyebrows became de-
cidedly oblique. With an older girl the same obliquity
was observed, with the inner ends of the eyebrows plain-
ly puckered; and at the same time the corners of the
mouth were drawn downwards. As soon as she burst
into tears, the features all changed and this peculiar
expression vanished. Again, after a little boy had been
vaccinated, which made him scream and cry violently,
the surgeon gave him an orange brought for the pur-,
pose, and this pleased the child much; as he stopped
crying all the characteristic movements were observed,
including the formation of rectangular wrinkles in the
middle of the forehead. Lastly, I met on the road a
little girl three or four years old, who had been fright-
ened by a dog, and when I asked her what was the mat-




' I

i                            .190                    EXPRESSION OF GRIEF:           CHAP. VII.

|"                               ter, she stopped whimpering, and her eyebrows instantly

* ,                               became oblique to an extraordinary degree,

j, !                                     Here then,, as I cannot doubt, we have the key to

f i                               the problem why the central fasciae of the frontal nrns-

C !                               cle and the muscles round the eyes contract in oppo-

sition to each other under the influence of grief;—wheth-
er their contraction be prolonged, as with the melan-
cholic insane, or momentary, from some trifling cause
of distress. We have all of us, as infants, repeatedly
contracted our orbicular, corrugator, and pyramidal mus-
cles, in order to protect our eyes whilst screaming; our
progenitors before us have done the same during many
generations; and though with advancing years we easily
prevent, when feeling distressed, the utterance of
screams, we cannot from long habit always prevent a
slight contraction of the above-named muscles; nor in-
deed do we observe their contraction in ourselves, or
attempt to stop it, if slight. But the pyramidal mus-
cles seem to be less under the command of the will than
the other related muscles; and if they be well devel-
oped, their contraction can be checked only by the an-
tagonistic contraction of the central fascise of the frontal
muscle. The result which necessarily follows, if these
fasciae contract energetically, is the oblique drawing up
of the eyebrows, the puckering of their inner ends, and
the formation of rectangular furrows on the middle of the
forehead. As children and women cry much more freely
than men, and as grown-up persons of both sexes rarely
•weep except from mental distress, we can understand
why the grief-muscles are more frequently seen in action,
as I believe to be the case, with children and women
than with men; and with adults of both sexes from men-
tal distress alone. In some of the cases before recorded,
as in that of the poor Dhangar woman and of the Hin-
dustani man, the action of the grief-muscles was quickly


followed by bitter weeping. In all eases of distress,
whether great or small, our brains tend through long
habit to send an order to certain muscles to contract,
as if we were still infants on the point of screaming out;
but this order we, by the wondrous power of the will,
and through habit, are able partially to counteract; al-
though this is effected unconsciously, as far as the means
of counteraction are concerned.

On the depression of the corners of the mouth.—This
action is effected by the depressores any will or is (see let-
ter K In figs. 1 and 2). The fibres of this muscle diverge
downwards, with the upper convergent ends attached
round the angles of the mouth, and to the lower lip
a little way within the angles.6 Some of the fibres ap-
pear to be antagonistic to the great zygomatie muscle,
and others to the several muscles running to the outer
part of the upper lip. The contraction of this muscle
draws downwards and outwards the corners of the
mouth, including the outer part of the upper lip, and
even in a slight degree the wings of the nostrils. When
the mouth is closed and this muscle acts, the commis-
sure or line of junction of the two lips forms a curved
line with the concavity downwards,7 and the lips them-
selves are generally somewhat protruded, especially the
lower one. The- mouth in this state is well represented
in the two photographs (Plate II., figs. 6 and 7) by Mr.
Hejlander. The upper boy (fig. 6) had just stopped cry-
ing, after receiving a slap on the face from another boy;
and the right moment was seized for photographing him.



6  Henle,   Handbueh der Anat. des Mensohen,  1858,  B.

i. s. 148, fig^s. 68 and 69.

7  See the account of the action of this muscle by Dr.
Duchenne,    * M£eanisme   de   la   Physionomle    Humaine,
Alb-um (1862), Till. p. 34.


$$' y

W!' M





The expression of low spirits., grief or dejection, due
to the contraction of this muscle has been noticed by
every one who has written on the subject. To say that
a person " is down in the mouth/' is synonymous with
saying that he is out of spirits. The depression of the
corners may often be seen, as already stated on the au-
thority of Dr. Crichton Browne and Mr. Mcol, with the
melancholic insane, and was well exhibited in some
photographs sent to me by the former gentleman, of-
patients with a strong tendency to suicide. It has been
observed with men belonging to various races, namely
with Hindoos, the dark hill-tribes of India, Malays, and,
as the Eev. Mr. Hagenauer informs me, with the abo-
rigines of Australia.

When infants scream they firmly contract the mus-
cles round their eyes, and this draws up the upper lip;
and as they have to keep their mouths widely open, the
depressor muscles running to the corners are likewise
brought into strong action. This generally, but not
invariably, causes'a slight angular bend in the lower
lip on both sides, near the corners of the mouth. The
result of the upper and lower lip being thus acted on,
is that the mouth assumes a sqiiarish outline. The con-
traction of the depressor muscle is best seen in infants
when not screaming violently, and especially just before
they begin, or when they cease to scream. Their little
faces then acquire an extremely piteous expression, as
I continually observed with my own infants between
the ages of about six weeks and two or three months.
Sometimes, when they are struggling against a crying-
fit, the outline of the mouth is curved in so exaggerated a
manner as to be like a horseshoe; and the expression of
misery then becomes a ludicrous caricature.

The explanation of the contraction of this muscle,
under the influence of low spirits of dejection, appar-


ently follows from the same general principles as in the
case of the obliquity of the eyebrows. Dr. Duchenne
informs me that he concludes from his observations, now
prolonged during many years, that this is one of the
facial muscles which is least under the control of the
will. This fact may indeed be inferred from what has
just been stated with respect to infants when doubtfully
beginning to cry, or endeavouring to stop crying; for
they then generally command all the other facial mus-
cles more effectually than they do the depressors of the
corners of the mouth. Two excellent observers who
had no theory on the subject, one of them a surgeon,
carefully watched for me some older children and women
as with some opposed struggling they very gradually
approached the point of bursting out into tears; and
both observers felt sure that the depressors began to
act before any of the other muscles. Now as the de-
pressors have been repeatedly brought into strong action
during infancy in many generations, nerve-force will
tend to flow, on the principle of long associated habit,
to these muscles as well as to various other facial mus-
cles, whenever in after life even a slight feeling of dis-
tress is experienced. But as the depressors are some-
what less under the control of the will than most of the
other muscles, we might expect that they would often
slightly contract, whilst the others remained passive.
It is remarkable how small a depression of the corners
of the mouth gives to the countenance an expression of
low spirits or dejection, so that an extremely slight con-
traction of these muscles would be sufficient to betray
this state of mind.

I may here mention a trifling observation, as it will
serve to sum up our present subject. An old lady with
a comfortable but absorbed expression sat nearly oppo-

p'l 111





site to me in a railway carriage. Whilst I was looking
at her., I saw that her depressores anguli oris became
very slightly, yet decidedly, contracted; but as her
countenance remained as placid as ever, I reflected how
meaningless was this contraction, and how easily one
might be deceived. The thought had hardly occurred
to me when I saw that her eyes suddenly became suf-
fused with tears almost to overflowing, and her whole
countenance fell. There could now be no doubt that
some painful recollection, perhaps that of a long-lost
child, was passing through her mind. As soon as her
sensorium was thus affected, certain nerve-cells from
long habit instantly transmitted an order to all the re-
spiratory muscles, and to those round the mouth, to pre-
pare for a fit of crying. But the order was counter-
manded by the will, or rather by a later acquired habit,
and all the muscles were obedient, excepting in a slight
degree the depressores anguli oris. The mouth was not
even opened; the respiration was not hurried; and no
muscle was affected except those which draw down the
corners of the mouth.

As soon as the mouth of this lady began, involun-
tarily and unconsciously on her part, to assume the
proper form for a crying-fit, we may feel almost sure
that some nerve-influence would have been transmitted
through the long accustomed channels to the various
respiratory muscles, as well as to those round the eyes,
and to the vaso-motor centre which governs the supply of
blood sent to the lacrymal glands. Of this latter fact we
have indeed clear evidence in her eyes becoming slightly
suffused with tears; and we can understand this, as the
lacrymal glands are less tinder the control of the will
than the facial muscles. No doubt there existed at the
same time some tendency in the muscles round the eyes
at contract, as if for the sake of protecting them from


being gorged with blood,- but this contraction was com-
pletely overmastered, and her brow remained unruffled.
Had the pyramidal, corrugator, and orbicular muscles
"been as little obedient to the will, as they are in many
persons, they would have been slightly acted on; and
then the central fascia? of the frontal muscle would have
contracted in antagonism, and her eyebrows would have
become oblique, with rectangular furrows on her fore-
head. Her countenance would-then have expressed still
more plainly than it did a state of dejection, or rather
one of grief.

Through steps such as these we can understand how
it is, that as soon as. some melancholy thought passes
through the brain, there occurs a just perceptible draw-
ing down of the corners of the mouth, or a slight raising
up of the inner ends of the eyebrows, or both movements
combined, and immediately afterwards a slight suffu-
sion of tears. A thrill of nerve-force is transmitted along
several habitual channels, and produces an effect on any
point where the will has not acquired through long
liabit much power of interference. The above actions
may be considered as rudimental vestiges of the scream-
ing-fits, which are so frequent and prolonged during
infancy. In this case, as well as in many others, the
links are indeed wonderful which connect cause and
effect in giving rise to various expressions on the human
countenance; and they explain to us the meaning of
certain movements, which we involuntarily and uncon-
sciously perform, whenever certain transitory emotions
pass through our minds.







Laughter primarily the expression of joy — Ludicrous ideas
— Movements of the features during- laughter — Nature
of the sound produced — The secretion of tears during
loud laughter — Gradation from loud laughter to gentle
smiling — High spirits — The expression of love — Tender
feelings — Devotion.

JOY, when intense,' leads to various purposeless move-
ments — to dancing about, clapping the hands, stamping,
&c., and to loud laughter. Laughter seems primarily
to te the expression of mere joy or happiness. We
clearly see this in children at play, who are almost inces-
santly laughing. With young persons past childhood,
when they are in high spirits, there is always much
meaningless laughter. The laughter of the gods is de-
scribed by Homer as " the exuberance of their celestial
joy after their daily banquet. " A man smiles — and
smiling, as we shall see, graduates into laughter — at
meeting an old friend in the street, as he does at any
trifling pleasure, such as smelling a sweet perfume.1
Laura Bridgman, from her blindness and deafness, could
not have acquired any expression through imitation,
yet when a letter from a beloved friend was communi-
cated to her by gesture-language, she " laughed and

1 Herbert Spencer, * Essays Scientific,' &c., 1858, p. 360.

CHAP. VIII.                    LAUGHTER.                             197

clapped her hands, and the colour mounted to her
cheeks." On other occasions she has been seen to stamp
for joy.2

Idiots and Imbecile persons likewise afford good evi-
dence that laughter or smiling primarily expresses mere
happiness or joy. Dr. Crichton Browne, to whom, as
on so many other occasions., I am indebted for the results
of his wide experience, informs me that with idiots
laughter is the most prevalent and frequent of all the
emotional expressions. Many idiots are morose, pas-
sionate., restless, in a painful state of mind, or utterly
stolid, and these never laugh. Others frequently laugh
in a quite senseless manner. Thus an idiot boy, incapa-
ble of speech, complained to Dr. Browne, by the aid of
signs, that another boy in the asylum had given him
a black eye; and this was accompanied by " explosions
of laughter and with his face covered with the broadest
smiles." There is another large class of idiots who are
persistently joyous and benign, and who are constantly
laughing or smiling.3 Their countenances often exhibit
a stereotyped smile; tlieir joyousness is increased, and
they grin, chuckle, or giggle, whenever food is placed
before them, or when they are caressed, are shown bright
colours, or hear music. Some of them laugh more than
usual when they walk about, or attempt any muscular
exertion. The joyousness of most of these idiots cannot
possibly be associated, as Dr. Browne remarks, with any
distinct ideas: they simply feel pleasure, and express,
it by laughter or smiles. With imbeciles rather higher
in the scale, personal vanity seems to be the commonest
cause of laughter, and next to this, pleasure arising from
the approbation of their conduct.

2 F. Lieber on the vocal sounds of L. Bridgman, * Smith-
sonian Contributions,' 1851, vol. ii. p. 6.

3  See, also, Mr. Marshall, in Phil. Transact. 1864, p. 526.


With grown-up persons laughter is excited by causes
considerably different from those which .suffice during
childhood; but this remark hardly applies to smiling.
Laughter in this respect is analogous with weeping,
which with adults is almost confined to mental distress,
whilst with children it is excited by bodily pain or any
suffering, as well as by fear or rage. Many curious dis-
cussions have been written on the causes of laughter
with grown-up persons. The subject is extremely com-
plex. Something incongruous or unaccountable, excit-
ing surprise and some sense of superiority in the laugher,
who must be in a happy frame of mind, seems to be the
commonest cause.4 The circumstances must not be of
a momentous nature: no poor man would laugh or smile
on suddenly hearing that a large fortune had been be-
queathed to him. If the mind is strongly excited by
pleasurable feelings, and any little unexpected event or
thought occurs, then, as Mr. Herbert Spencer remarks,5
" a large amount of nervous energy, instead of being
allowed to expend itself in producing an equivalent
amount of the new thoughts and emotion which were
nascent, is suddenly checked in its flow." ..." The
excess must discharge itself in some other direction, and
there results an efflux through the motor nerves to vari-
ous classes of the muscles, producing the half-convul-
sive actions we term laughter." An observation, bear-
ing on this point, was made by a correspondent during
the recent siege of Paris, namely, that the German sol-
diers, after strong excitement from exposure to extreme

4 Mr. Bain (' The Emotions? and the Will,' 1.865, p. 247)
has a long* and. interesting" discussion on the Ludicrous.
The quotation above given about the laughter of the
gods is taken from this work. See, also, Mandeville,
' The Fable of the Bees,' vol. ii. p. 168.

8 ' The Physiology of Laughter,' Essays, Second Series,
1863, p. 114.




danger, were particularly apt to burst out into loud
laughter at the smallest joke. So again when young
children are just beginning to cry, an unexpected event
will sometimes suddenly turn their crying into laughter,
which apparently serves equally well to expend their
superfluous nervous energy.

The imagination is sometimes said to be tickled by a
ludicrous idea; and this so-called tickling of the mind
is curiously analogous with that of the body. Every one
knows how immoderately children laugh, and how their
whole bodies are convulsed when they are tickled. The
anthropoid apes, as we have seen, likewise utter a re-
iterated sound, corresponding with our laughter, when
they are tickled, especially under the armpits. I touched
with a bit of paper the sole of the foot of one of my
infants, when only seven days old, and it was suddenly
jerked away and the toes curled about, as in an older
child. Such movements, as well as laughter from being
tickled, are manifestly reflex actions; and this is like-
wise shown by the minute unstripecl muscles, which
serve to erect the separate hairs on the body, contract-
ing near a tickled surface.0 Yet laughter from a ludi-
crous idea, though involuntary, cannot be called a strict-
ly reflex action. In this case, and in that of laughter
from being tickled, the mind must be in a pleasurable
condition; a young child, if tickled by a strange man,
would scream from fear. The touch must be light, and
an idea or event, to be ludicrous, must not be of grave
import. The parts of the body which are most easily
tickled are those which are not commonly touched, such
as the armpits or between the toes, or parts such as the
soles of the feet, which are habitually touched by a broad

0 J. Lister in * Quarterly Journal of Microscopical Sci-
ence,' 1853, vol. i. p. 266.







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

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

Tab 111




mouth is acted on exclusively by the great zygomatic
muscles, which serve to draw the corners backwards and
upwards; but judging from the manner in which the
upper teeth are always exposed during laughter and
broad smiling, as well as from my own sensations, I can-
not doubt that some of the muscles running to the upper
lip are likewise brought into moderate action. The
upper and lower orbicular muscles of the eyes are at the
same time more or less contracted; and there is an inti-
mate connection, as explained in the chapter on weep-
ing", between the orbiculars, especially the lower ones,
and some of the muscles running to the upper lip.
Henle remarks.10 on this head, that when a man closely
shuts one eye he cannot avoid retracting the upper lip
on the same side; conversely, if any one will place his
finger on his lower eyelid, and then uncover his upper
incisors as much as possible, he will feel, as his upper
lip is drawn strongly upwards, that the muscles of the
lower eyelid contract. In Henle's drawing, given in
woodcut, fig. 2, the musculus malaris (H) which runs
, to the upper lip may be seen to form an almost integral
part of the lower orbicular muscle.

Dr. Duchenne has given a large photograph of an old
man (reduced on Plate III. fig 4), in his usual passive
condition, and another of the same man (fig. 5), nat-
urally smiling. The latter was instantly recognized by
every one to whom it was shown as true to nature. He
lias also given, as an example of an unnatural or false
smile, another photograph (fig. 6) of the same old man,
with the corners of his mouth strongly retracted by the
galvanization of the great zygomatic muscles. That
the expression is not natural is clear, for I showed this

10 Handbuch  der  System.  Anat.  des  Menschen,   1858,
B. i. s. 144.   See my woodcut (H. fig. 2).





photograph to twenty-four persons, of whom three could
not in the least tell what was meant,, whilst the others,
though they perceived that the expression was of the
nature of a smile, answered in such words as " a wicked
joke," " trying to laugh," " grinning laughter," " half-
amazed laughter," &c. Dr. Duchenne attributes the
falseness of the expression altogether to the orbicular
muscles of the lower eyelids not being sufficiently con-
tracted; for he justly lays great stress on their contrac-
tion in the expression of joy. No doubt there is much
truth in this view, but not, as it appears to me, the whole
truth. The contraction of the lower orbiculars is always
accompanied, as we have seen, by the dra,wing up of the
upper lip. Had the upper lip, in fig. 6, been thus acted
on to a slight extent, its curvature would have been less
rigid, the naso-labial furrow would have been slightly
different, and the whole expression would, as I believe,
have been more natural, independently of the more con-
spicuous effect from the stronger contraction of the
lower eyelids. The corrugator muscle, moreover, in fig.
6, is too much contracted, causing a frown; and thist
muscle never acts under the influence of joy except dur-
ing strongly pronounced or violent laughter.

By the drawing backwards and upwards of the cor-
ners of the mouth, through the contraction of the great
zygomatic muscles, and by the raising of the upper lip,
the cheeks are drawn upwards. Wrinkles are thus
formed under the eyes, and, with old people, at their
outer ends; and these are highly characteristic of laugh-
ter or smiling. As a gentle smile increases into a strong
one, or into a laugh, every one may feel and see, if he will
attend to his own sensations and look at himself in a
mirror, that as the upper Lip is drawn up and the lower
orbiculars contract, the wrinkles in the lower eyelids
and those beneath the eyes are much strengthened or




increased. At the same time, as I have repeatedly ob-
served, the eyebrows are slightly lowered, which shows
that the upper as well as the lower orbiculars contract
at least to some degree, though this passes unperceived,
as far as our sensations are concerned. If the original
photograph of the old man, with his countenance in its
usual placid state (fig. 4), be compared with that (fig. 5)
in which he is naturally smiling, it may be seen that the
eyebrows in the latter are a little lowered. I presume
that this is owing to the upper orbiculars being impelled,
through the force of long-associated habit, to act to a
certain extent in concert with the lower orbiculars,
which themselves contract in connection with the draw-
ing up of the upper lip.

The tendency in the zygomatic muscles to contract
under pleasurable emotions is shown by a curious fact,
communicated- to me by Dr. Browne, with respect to
patients suffering from general paralysis of the insane^
" In this malady there is almost invariably optimism—
delusions as to wealth, rank, grandeur—insane joyous-
ness, benevolence, and profusion, while its very earliest
physical symptom is trembling at the corners of the
mouth and at the outer corners of the eyes. This is a
well-recognized fact. Constant tremulous agitation of
the inferior palpebral and great zygomatic muscles is
pathognomic of the earlier stages of general paralysis.
The countenance has a pleased and benevolent expres-
sion. As the disease advances other muscles become
involved, but until complete fatuity is reached, the pre-
vailing expression is that of feeble benevolence."

As in laughing and broadly smiling the cheeks and
upper lip are much raised, the nose appears to be short-

11 See, also, remarks to the same effect by Dr. J. Crich-
ton Browne in 'Journal of Mental Science,' April, 1871,
p. 149.






ened, and the skin on the bridge becomes finely wrin-
kled in transverse lines, with other oblique longitudinal
lines on the sides. The upper front teeth are commonly
exposed. A well-marked naso-labial fold is formed,
which runs from the wing of each nostril to the corner
of the mouth; and this fold is often double in old per-

A bright and sparkling eye is as characteristic of a
pleased or amused state of mind, as is the retraction
of the corners of the mouth and upper lip with the
wrinkles thus produced. Even the eyes of microcepha-
lous idiots, who are so degraded that they never learn
to speak, brighten slightly when they are pleased.12
Under extreme laughter the eyes are too much suffused
with tears to sparkle; but the moisture squeezed out of
the glands during moderate laughter or smiling may
aid in giving them lustre^ though this must be of alto-
gether subordinate importance, as they become dull from
.grief, though they are then often moist. Their bright-
ness seems to be chiefly due to their tenseness,13 owing
to the contraction of the orbicular muscles and to the
pressure of the raised cheeks.- But, according to Dr.
Piderit, who has discussed this point more fully than
any other writer,14 the tenseness may be largely attrib-
uted to the eyeballs becoming filled with blood and other
fluids, from the acceleration of the circulation, conse-
quent on the excitement of pleasure. He remarks on the
contrast in the appearance of the eyes of a hectic pa-
tient with a rapid circulation, and of a man suffering
from cholera with almost all the fluids of his body
drained from him. Any cause which lowers the circula-
tion deadens the eye. I remember seeing a man utterly

12  C. Vogt, ' Memoire sur les Microc6phales,' 1867, p. 21.

13  Sir C. Bell, ' Anatomy of Expression,' p. 133.

Physiognomik,' 1867, s. 63-67.

CHAP. YUI.                   LAUGHTER.                             205

prostrated by prolonged and severe exertion during a
very hot day, and a bystander compared his eyes to those
of a boiled codfish.

To return to the sounds produced during laughter.
AVe can see in a vague manner how the utterance of
sounds of some kind would naturally become associated
"with a pleasurable state of mind; for throughout a large
part of the animal kingdom vocal or instrumental sounds
are employed either as a call or as a charm by one sex
for the other. They are also employed as the means for
a joyful meeting between the parents and their offspring,,
and between the attached members of the same social
community. But why the sounds which man utters
when he is pleased have the peculiar reiterated charac-
ter of laughter we do not know. Nevertheless we can
see that they would naturally be as different as possible
from the screams or cries of distress; and as in the pro-
duction of the latter, the expirations are prolonged and
continuous, with the inspirations short and interrupted,
so it might perhaps have been expected with the sounds
uttered from joy, that the expirations would have been
short and broken with the inspirations prolonged; and
this is the case.

It is an equally obscure point why the corners of the
mouth are retracted and the upper lip raised during
ordinary laughter. The mouth must not be opened to
its utmost extent, for when this occurs during a parox-
ysm of excessive laughter hardly any sound is emitted;
or it changes its tone and seems to come from deep down
in the throat. The respiratory muscles, and even those
of the limbs, are at the same time thrown "into rapid
vibratory movements. The lower jaw often partakes of
this movement, and this would tend to prevent the
mouth from being widely opened. But as a full volume
of sound has to be poured forth, the orifice of the mouth





must be large; and it is perhaps to gain this end that
the corners are retracted and the upper lip raised. Al-
though we can hardly account for the shape of the mouth
during laughter, which leads to wrinkles being formed
beneath the eyes, nor for the peculiar reiterated sound
of laughter., nor for the quivering of the jaws, neverthe-
less we may infer that all these effects are due to some
common cause. For they are all characteristic and ex-
pressive of a pleased state of mind in various kinds of

A graduated series can be followed from violent to
moderate laughter, to a broad smile, to a gentle smile,
and to the expression of mere cheerfulness. During
excessive laughter the whole body is often thrown back-
ward and shakes, or is almost convulsed; the respira-
tion is much disturbed; the head and face become gorged
with blood, with the veins distended; and the orbicular
muscles are spasmodically contracted in order to pro-
tect the eyes. Tears are freely shed. Hence, as for-
merly remarked, it is scarcely possible to point out any
difference between the tear-stained face of a person after
a paroxysm of excessive laughter and after a bitter cry-
ing-fit.15 It is probably due to the close similarity of the
spasmodic movements caused by these widely different
emotions that hysteric patients alternately cry and laugh
with violence, and that young children pass
suddenly from the one to the other state. Mr. Swin-
hoe informs rne that he has often seen the Chinese, when
suffering from deep grief, burst out into hysterical fits
of laughter.

15 vSir ,T. Reynolds remarks (* Discourses,' xii. p. 100),
" It is cxiriotis to observe, and it is certainly true, that the
extremes of contrary passions are, with very little varia-
tion, expressed by tbe same action." He gives as an in-
stance the frantic joy of a Bacchante and the grief of ,a
Mary Magdalen.

CHAP. VIII.                   LAUGHTER.                            ' 207

I was anxious to know whether tears are freely shed
during excessive laughter by most of the races of men,,
and I hear from my correspondents that this is the case.
One instance was observed with the Hindoos, and they
themselves said that it often occurred. So it is with
the Chinese. The women of a wild tribe of Malays in
the Malacca peninsula, sometimes shed tears when they
laugh heartily, though this seldom occurs. With the
Dyaks of Borneo it must frequently be the case, at least
with the women, for I hear from the Eajah C. Brooke
that it is a common expression with them to say "we
nearly made tears from. laughter." The aborigines of
.Australia express their emotions freely, and they are
described by my correspondents as jumping about and
clapping their hands for joy, and as often roaring with
laughter. No less than four observers have seen their
eyes freely watering on such occasions; and in one in-
stance the tears rolled down their cheeks. Mr. Buhner,
a missionary in a remote part of Victoria, remarks, " that
they have a keen sense of the ridiculous; they are ex-
cellent mimics, and when one of them is able to imitate
the peculiarities of some absent member of the tribe, it
is very common to hear all in the camp convulsed with
laughter." With Europeans hardly anything excites
laughter so easily as mimicry; and it is rather curious
to find the same fact with the savages of Australia, who
constitute one of the most distinct races in the world.

In Southern Africa with two tribes of Kafirs, espe-
cially with the women, their eyes often fill with tears
during laughter. Gaika, the brother of the chief San-
dilli, answers my query on this head, with the words,
" Yes, that is their common practice." Sir Andrew
Smith has seen the painted face of a Hottentot woman
all furrowed with tears after a fit of laughter. In North-
ern Africa, with the Abyssinians, tears are secreted under










the same circumstances. Lastly, in North America, the
same fact has been observed in a remarkably savage and
isolated tribe, but chiefly with the women; in another
tribe it was observed only on a single occasion.

Excessive laughter, as before remarked, graduates
into moderate laughter. In this latter case the muscles
round the eyes are much less contracted, and there is
little or no frowning. Between a gentle laugh and a
broad smile there is hardly any difference, excepting
that in smiling no reiterated sound is uttered, though a
single rather strong expiration, or slight noise—a rudi-
ment of a laugh—may often be heard at the commence-
ment of a smile. On a moderately smiling countenance
the contraction of the upper orbicular muscles can still
just be traced by a slight lowering of the eyebrows. The
contraction of the lower orbicular and palpebral mus-
cles is much plainer, and is shown by the wrinkling of
the lower eyelids and of the skin beneath them, together
with a slight drawing up of the upper lip. From the
broadest smile we pass by the finest steps into the gen-
tlest one. In this latter case the features are moved in
a much less degree, and much more slowly, and the
mouth is kept closed. The curvature of the naso-labial
furrow is also slightly different in the two cases. We
thus see that no abrupt line of demarcation can be
drawn between the movement of the features during the
most violent laughter and a very faint smile.16

A smile, therefore, may be said to be the first stage
in the development of a laugh. But a different and
more probable view may be suggested; namely, 'that
the habit of uttering loud reiterated sounds from a sense
of pleasure, first led to the retraction of the corners of
the mouth and of the upper lip, and to the contraction

10 Dr. Piderit has come to the same conclusion, ibid. s. 99.

CHAP, Yin.



of the orbicular muscles; and that now, through associa-
tion and long-continued habit, the same muscles are
brought into slight pla)r whenever any cause excites in
us a feeling which, if stronger, would have led to laugh-
ter; and the result is a smile.

Whether we look at laughter as the full development
of a smile, or, as is more probable, at a gentle smile as
the last trace of a habit, firmly fixed during many gen-
erations, of laughing whenever we are joyful, we can
follow in our infants the gradual passage of the one into
the other. It is well known to those who have the charge
of young infants, that it is difficult to feel sure when cer-
tain movements about their mouths are really expressive;
that is, when they really smile. Hence I carefully
watched my own infants. One of them at the age of
forty-five days, and being at the time in a happy frame
of mind, smiled; that is, the corners of the mouth were
retracted, and simultaneously the eyes became decidedly
bright. I observed the same thing on the following
day; but on the third day the child was not quite well
and there was no trace of a smile, and this renders it
probable that the previous smiles were real. Eight days
subsequently and during the next succeeding week, it
was remarkable how. his eyes brightened whenever he
smiled, and his nose became at the same time trans-
versely wrinkled. This was now accompanied by a little
bleating noise, which perhaps represented a laugh. At
the age of 113 days these little noises, which were al-
ways made during expiration, assumed a slightly differ-
ent character, and were more broken or interrupted, as
in sobbing; and this was certainly incipient laughter.
The change in tone seemed to me at the time to be con-
nected with the greater lateral-extension of the mouth
as the smiles became broader.

In a second infant the first real smile was observed

I                            210'            EXPBESSION OF HIGH SPIRITS. CHAP. VIII.

' '.*

I  ,                          at 'about the same age, viz. forty-five days; and in a

I                            third, at a somewhat earlier age.    The second infant,

\ -                         when sixty-five days old, smiled much more broadly and

plainly than did the one first mentioned at the same
^   '                        age; and even at this early age uttered noises very like

I .                         laughter.    In this gradual acquirement, by infants, of

I : ,                         the habit of laughing, we have a case in some degree

analogous to that of weeping. As practice is requisite
with the ordinary movements of the body., such as walk-
ing, so it seems to be with laughing and weeping. The
art of screaming, on the other hand, from being of serv-
ice to infants, has become finely developed from the
earliest days.

High spirits , cheerfulness. — A man in high spirits,
though he may not actually smile, commonly exhibits
some tendency to the retraction of the corners of his
mouth. From the excitement of pleasure, the circula-
tion becomes more rapid; the eyes are bright, and the
colour of the .Pace rises. The brain, being stimulated by
the increased flow of blood, reacts on the mental powers;
lively ideas pass still more rapidly through the mind,
and the affections are warmed. I heard a child, a little
under four years old, when asked what was meant by
being in good spirits, answer, " It is laughing, talking,
and kissing." It would be difficult to give a truer and
more practical definition. A man in this state holds his
body erect, his head upright, and his eyes open. There
is no drooping of the features, and no contraction of the
eyebrows. On the contrary, the frontal muscle, as Mo-
reau observes,17 tends to contract slightly; and this
smooths the brow, removes every trace of a frown, arches

1T * La Physionomie,' par G. Lavater, edit, of 1820, vol.
iv. p. 224. See, aljso, Sir C. Bell, 'Anatomy of Expression,'
p. 172, for the quotation given, below.


the eyebrows a little, and raises the eyelids. Hence the
Latin phrase, expomgere frontem—to unwrinkle the
brow—means, to be cheerful or merry. The whole ex-
pression of a man in good spirits is exactly the opposite
of that of one suffering from sorrow. According to Sir
C. Bell, " In all the exhilarating emotions the .eyebrows,
eyelids, the nostrils, and the angles of the mouth are
raised. In the depressing passions it is the reverse."
"Under the influence of the latter the brow is heavy, the
eyelids, cheeks, mouth., and whole head droop; the eyes
are dull; the countenance pallid, and the respiration
slow. In joy the face expands, in grief it lengthens.
"Whether the principle of antithesis has here come into
play in producing these opposite expressions, in aid of
the direct causes which have been specified and which
are sufficiently plain, I will not pretend to say.

With all the races of man the expression of good
spirit appears to be the same, and is easily recognized.
My informants, from various parts of the Old and New
"Worlds, answer in the affirmative to my queries on this
head, and they give some particulars with respect to
Hindoos, Malays, and New Zealanders. The brightness
of the eyes of the Australians has struck four observers,
and the same fact has been noticed with Hindoos, New
Zealanders, and the Dyaks of Borneo.

Savages sometimes express their satisfaction not only
by smiling, but by gestures derived from the pleasui*e
of eating. " Thus Mr. Wedgwood 18 quotes Petherick
that the negroes on the Upper Nile began a general rub-
bing of their bellies when he displayed his beads; and
Leichhardt says that the Australians smacked and clacked
their mouths at the sight of his horses and bullocks, and

. 18 A ' Dictionary of English Etymology,' 2nd edit. 1872,
Introduction, p. xliv.

212                EXPRESSION OF LOYE, ETC.      CHAP. VIII.

more especially of his kangaroo dogs. The Greenland-
ers, " when they affirm anything with pleasure, suck
down air with a certain sound; " w and this may be an
imitation of the act of swallowing savoury food.

Laughter is suppressed by the firm contraction of the
orbicular muscles of the mouth, which prevents the great
zygomatie and other muscles from drawing the lips
backwards and upwards. The lower lip is also some-
times held by the teeth, and this gives a roguish ex-
pression to the face, as was observed with the blind and
deaf Laura Bridgman.20 The great zygomatie muscle
is sometimes variable in its course, and I have seen a
young woman in whom the depressores anguli oris were
brought into strong action in suppressing a smile; but
this by no means gave to her countenance a melancholy
expression, owing to the brightness of her eyes.

Laughter is 'frequently employed in a forced manner
to conceal or mask some other state of mind, even anger.
We often see persons laughing in order to conceal their
shame or shyness. When a person purses up his mouth,
as if to prevent the possibility of a smile, though there
is nothing to excite one, or nothing to prevent its free
indulgence, an affected, solemn, or pedantic expression
is given; but of such hybrid expressions nothing more
need here be said. In the case of derision, a real or pre-
tended smile or laugh is often blended with the expres-
sion proper to contempt, and this may pass into angry
contempt or scorn. In such cases the meaning of the
laugh or smile is to show the oifending person.that he
excites only amusement.

Love, tender feelings, &c. — Although the emotion of

" Craixtz, quoted by Tylor, ' Primitive Culture,' 1871,
vol. i. p. 169.

20 F. Lieber, ' Smithsonian Contributions,' 1851, vol.
ii. p. 7.

CHAP. VIII.     EXPRESSION OF LOVE, ETC.                213

love, for instance that of a mother for her infant, is one
of the strongest of which the mind is capable, it can
hardly be said to have any proper or peculiar means of
expression; and this is intelligible, as it has not habit-
ually led to any special line of action. No doubt, as
affection is a pleasurable sensation, it generally causes a
gentle smile and some brightening of the eyes. A
strong desire to touch the beloved person is commonly
felt; and love is expressed by this means more plainly
than by any other.21 Hence we long to clasp in our
arms those whom we tenderly love. We probably owe
this desire to inherited habit, in association with the
nursing and tending of our children, and with the mu-
tual caresses of lovers.

With the lower animals we see the same principle of
pleasure derived from contact in association with love.
Dogs and cats manifestly take pleasure in rubbing against
their masters and mistresses, and in being rubbed or
patted by them. Many kinds of monkeys, as I am as-
sured by the keepers in the Zoological Gardens, delight
in fondling and being fondled by each other, and by
persons to whom they are attached. Mr. Bartlett has
described to me the behaviour of two chimpanzees, rather
older animals than those generally imported into this             ? .

country, when they were first brought together.    They              /

sat opposite, touching each other with their much pro-           t

traded lips; and the one put his hand on the shoulder of          *

the other. They then mutually folded each other in
their arms. Afterwards they stood up, each with one         /

arm on the shoulder of the other, lifted up their heads,
opened their mouths, and yelled with delight.

21 Mr. Bain remarks (' Mental and Moral Science,' 1868,
p. 230), "Tenderness is a pleasurable emotion, variously
stimulated, whose effort is to draw human being's into
mutual embrace."





We Europeans are so accustomed to kissing as a
mark of affection,, that it might be thought to he innate
in mankind; but this is not the case. Steele was mis-
taken when he said " Nature was its author, and it began
with the first courtship." Jemmy Button, the Fuegian,
told me that this practice was unknown in his land. It
is equally unknown with the JSTew Zealanders, Tahitians,
Papuans, Australians, Somals of Africa, and the Esqui-
maux.22 But it is so far innate or natural that it appar-
ently depends on pleasure from close contact with a be-
loved person; and it is replaced in various parts of the
world, by the rubbing of noses, as with the New Zea-
. landers and Laplanders, by the rubbing or patting of
the arms, breasts, or stomachs, or by one man striking
his own face with the hands or feet of another. Perhaps
the practice of blowing, as a mark of affection, on vari-
ous parts of the body may depend on the same princi-

The feelings which are called tender are difficult to
analyse; they seem to be compounded of affection, joy,
and especially of sympathy. These feelings are in them-
selves of a pleasurable nature, excepting when pity is
too deep, or "horror is aroused, as in hearing of a tortured
man or animal. They are remarkable under our present
point of view from so readily exciting the secretion of
tears. Many a father and son have wept on meeting after
a long separation, especially if the meeting has been un-
. expected. No doubt extreme joy by itself tends to act
on the lacrymal glands; but on such occasions as the
foregoing vague thoughts of the grief which would have

22 Sir J. Lubbock, ' Prehistoric Times,' 2nd edit. 1869,
p. 552, gives full authorities for these statements. The
quotation from Steele is taken from this work.

28 See a full acotmt, with references, by K. B. Tylor,
' Researches into the Early History of Mankind,' 2nd *edit.
1870, p. 51.



Ibeen felt had the father and son never met, will proT>
a~bly have passed through their minds; and grief nat-
urally leads to the secretion of tears. Thus on the re-
t-urn of Ulysses:—

" Telemachus

Hose, and clung" weeping round his father's breast.
There the pent grief rained o'er them, yearning thus.

*          *          *          *          *          *

Thus piteously they wailed in sore unrest,
And on their weeping's had gone down the day,
But that at last Telemachus found words to say."
Worsley's Translation of the Odyssey,

Book xvi. st. 27.

So again when Penelope at last recognized her hus-
band: —

" Then from her eyelids the quick tears did start
And she ran to him from her place, and threw
Her arms about his neck, and a warm dew
Of kisses poured upon him, and thus spake: "

Book xxiii. st. 27.

The vivid recollection of our former home, or of
i ong-past happy days., readily causes the eyes to be suf-
I! vised with tears; but here, again, the thought naturally
;">ccurs that these days will never return. In such cases
*ve may be said to sympatllize with ourselves in our pres-
3nt, in comparison with our former, state. Sympathy
with the distresses of others, even with the imaginary
li stresses of a heroine in a pathetic story, for whom we
feel no affection, readily excites tears. So does sympa-
:l"iy with the happiness of others, as with that of a lover,
it; last successful after many hard trials in a well-told

Sympathy appears to constitute a separate or distinct
emotion; and it is especially apt to excite the lacrymal
glands. This holds good whether we give or receive
sympathy. Every one must have noticed how readily
3liildren burst out crying if we pity them for some small




hurt. With the melancholic insane, as Dr. Crichton
Browne informs me, a kind word will often plunge them
into unrestrained weeping. As soon as we express our
pity for the grief of a friend, tears often come into our
own eyes. The feeling of sympathy is commonly ex-
plained by assuming that, when we see or hear of suf-
fering in another, the idea of suffering is called up so viv-
idly in our own minds that we ourselves suffer. But this
explanation is hardly sufficient, for it does not account
for the intimate alliance between sympathy and affec-
tion. We undoubtedly sympathize far more deeply with
a beloved than with an indifferent person; and the
sympathy of the one gives us far more relief than that
of the other. Yet assuredly we can sympathize with
those for whom we feel no affection.

Why suffering, when actually experienced by our-
selves, excites weeping, has been discussed in a former
chapter. With respect to joy, its natural and universal
expression is laughter; and with all the races of man
loud laughter leads to the secretion of tears more freely
than does any other cause excepting distress. The suf-
fusion of the eyes with tears, which undoubtedly occurs
under great joy, though there is no laughter, can, as it
seems to me, be explained through habit and associa-
tion on the same principles as the effusion of tears from
grief, although there is no screaming. Nevertheless it
is not a little remarkable that sympathy with, the dis-
tresses of others should excite tears more freely than
our own distress; and this certainly is the case. Many
a man, from whose eyes no suffering of his own could
wring a tear, has shed tears at the sufferings of a be-
loved friend. It is still more remarkable that sympathy
with the happiness or good fortune of those whom we
tenderly love should lead to the same result, whilst a
similar happiness felt by ourselves would leave our eyes



dry. We should, however., bear in mind that the long-
continued habit of restraint which is so powerful in
checking the free flow of tears from bodily pain,, has not
been brought into play in preventing a moderate effu-
sion of tears in sympathy with the sufferings or happi-
ness of others.

Music has a wonderful power, as I have elsewhere
attempted to show/4 of recalling in a vague and in-
definite manner., those strong emotions which were felt
during long-past ages, when, as is probable, our early
progenitors courted each other by the aid of vocal tones.
And as several of our strongest emotions—grief, great
joy, love, and sympathy—lead to the free secretion of
tears, it is not surprising that music should be apt to
cause our eyes to become suffused with tears, especially
when we are already softened by any of the tenderer
feelings. Music often produces another peculiar effect.
We know that every strong sensation, emotion, or ex-
citement—extreme pain, rage, terror, joy, or the pas-
sion of love—all have a special tendency to cause the
muscles to tremble; and the thrill or slight shiver which
runs down the backbone and limbs of many persons
when they are powerfully affected by music, seems to
bear the same relation to the above trembling of the
body, as a slight suffusion of tears from the power of
music does to weeping from any strong and real emo-

Devotion.—As devotion is, in some degree, related, to
affection, though mainly consisting of reverence, often
combined with fear, the expression of this state of mind
may here be briefly noticed. With some sects, both
past and present, religion and love have been strangely
combined; and it has even been maintained, lamentable

2* * The Descent of Man,' vol. ii. p. 330.

218                 EXPRESSION OF DEVOTION.      CHAP. VIII.

as the fact may be, that the holy kiss of love differs but
little from that which a man bestows on a woman, or a
woman on a man.25 Devotion is chiefly expressed by
the face being directed towards the heavens, with the
eyeballs upturned. Sir 0. Bell remarks that, at the ap-
proach of sleep, or of a fainting-fit, or of death, the
pupils are drawn upwards and inwards; and he believes
that " when we are wrapt in devotional feelings, and
outward impressions are unheeded, the eyes are raised
by an action neither taught nor acquired; " and that
this is due to the same cause as in the above cases.20
That the eyes are upturned during sleep is, as I hear
from Professor Bonders, certain. With babies, whilst
sucking their mother's breast, this movement of the eye-
balls often gives to them an absurd appearance of ec-
static delight; and here it may be clearly perceived that
a struggle is going on against the position naturally
assumed during sleep. But Sir C. Bell's explanation of
the fact, which rests on the assumption that certain
muscles are more under the control of the will than
others is, as I hear from Professor Bonders, incorrect.
As the eyes are often turned up in prayer, without the
mind being so much absorbed in thought as to approach
to the unconsciousness of sleep, the movement is prob-
ably a conventional one — the result of the common be-
lief that Heaven, the source of Divine power to which
we pray, is seated above us.

A humble kneeling posture, with the hands upturned
and palms joined, appears to us, from long habit, a ges-
ture so appropriate to devotion, that it might be thought
to be innate; but I have not met with any evidence to

25 Dr. Mandsley has a discussion to this effect in Ms
'Body and Mind,'"l870, p. 85.

28 ' The Anatomy of Expression,' p. 103, and * Philo-
sophical Transactions,' 1823, p. 182.



this effect with the various extra-European races of
mankind. During the classical period of Roman history
it does not appear, as I hear from an excellent classic,
that the hands were thus joined during prayer. Mr.
Hensleigh Wedgwood has apparently given 27 the true
explanation, though this implies that the attitude is one
of slavish subjection. " When the suppliant kneels and
holds up his hands with the palms joined, he represents,
a captive who proves the completeness of his submission
by offering up his hands to be bound by the victor. It
is the pictorial representation of the Latin dare manus,
to signify submission." Hence it is not probable that
^ either the uplifting of the eyes or the joining of the open
hands, under the influence of devotional feelings, are in-
nate or truly expressive actions; and this could hardly
have been expected, for it is very doubtful whether feel-
ings, such as we should now rank as devotional, affected
the hearts of men, whilst they remained during past
ages in an uncivilized condition.


27 'The Origin of Language,' I860, p. 146. Mr. Tylor
(' Early History of Mankind,' 2nd edit. 1870, p. 48) gives
a more complex origin to the position of the hands dur-
ing prayer.




220                              REFLECTION.                      CHAP. IX.



The act of frowning—Reflection with an effort, or with the
perception of something difficult or disagreeable—Ab-
stracted meditation—Ill-temper—Moroseness—Obsti-
nacy—Sulkiness and pouting—Decision or determina-
tion—The firm closure of the mouth.

THE corrugators, by their contraction, lower the eye-
brows and bring them together, producing vertical fur-
rows on the forehead—that is, a frown. Sir C. Bell,
who erroneously thought that the corrugator was pecul-
iar to man, ranks it as "the most remarkable muscle
of the human face. It knits the eyebrows with an ener-
getic effort, which unaccountably, but irresistibly, con-
veys the idea of mind." Or, as he elsewhere says, " when
the eyebrows are knit, energy of mind is apparent., and
there is the mingling of thought and emotion with the
savage and brutal rage of the mere animal." * There

1 ' Anatomy of Expression,* pp. 137, 139. It is not mxr-
prising that the corrugators should have become much
more developed in man than in the anthropoid apes; for
they are brought into incessant action by him under vari-
ous circumstances, and will have been strengthened and
modified by the inherited effects of use. We have seen
how important a part they play, tog-ether with the orbicu-
lares, in protecting the eyes from being too much gorged
with blood during violent expiratory movements. When
the eyes are closed as quickly and as forcibly as possible,




is much, truth in these remarks, but hardly the whole
truth.. Dr Diichenne has called the corragator the
*EL~usele of reflection;2 hut this name, without some lim-
itation,, cannot be considered as quite correct.

A may be absorbed in the deepest thought, and
brow will remain smooth until he encounters some
obstacle In his train of reasoning, or is interrupted by
sortie disturbance, and then a frown passes like a shadow
over his brow. A half-starved man may think intently
liow to obtain food, but he probably will not frown un-
less lie encounters either in thought or action some dif-
ficulty., or finds the food when obtained nauseous. I
•nave noticed that almost everyone instantly frowns if
lie perceives a strange or bad taste in what he is eating.
I asked several persons, without explaining my object,
to listen intently to a very gentle tapping sound, the
natxire and source of which they all perfectly knew, and
not one frowned; but a man who joined us, and who
couild not conceive what we were all doing in profound
silence, when asked to listen, frowned much, though not
ixi an ill-temper, and said he could not in the least under-
stand what we all wanted. Dr. Piderit,3 who has pub-
lislied remarks to the same effect, adds that stammerers
generally frown in speaking; and that a man in doing
even so trifling a thing as pulling on a boot, frowns if

to save tliem from being injured by a blow, the corrugators
contract. With, savages or other men whose heads are
uncovered, the eyebrows are continually lowered and con-
tracted to serve as a shade against a too strong light; and
tills is effected partly by the corrugators. This movement
"wooild liave been more especially serviceable to man, as
soon as liis early progenitors held their heads erect. Last-
ly, 3?ro:£. Donders believes (' Archives of Medicine,' ed. by
Lu IBeale, 1870, vol. v. p. 34), that the corrugators are
"broug-lit into action in causing the eyeball to advance in
accommodation for proximity in vision.

2 * Mecanisme de la Physionomie Humaine,' Album,
g'ende iii.

a * Mimik und Physiognomik,' s. 46.


222                             REFLECTION.                     CHAP. IX,

lie finds it too tight. Some persons are such habitual
frowners, that the mere effort of speaking almost always
causes their brows to contract.

Men of all races frown when they are in any way per-
plexed in thought, as I infer from the answers which
I have received to my queries; but I framed them badly,
confounding absorbed meditation with perplexed reflec-
tion. Nevertheless, it is clear that the Australians,
Malays, Hindoos, and Kafirs of South Africa frown,
when they are puzzled. Dobritzhoffer remarks that the
Guaranies of South America on like occasions knit their

Prom these considerations, we may conclude that
frowning is not the expression of simple reflection, how-
ever profound, or of attention, however close, but of
something difficult or displeasing encountered in a train
of thought or in action. Deep reflection can, however,
seldom be long carried on without some difficulty, so
that it will generally be accompanied by a frown. Hence
it is that frowning commonly gives to the countenance,
as Sir 0. Bell remarks, an aspect of intellectual energy.
But in order that this effect may be produced, the eyes
must be clear and steady, or they may be cast downwards,
as often occurs in deep thought. The countenance must
not be otherwise disturbed, as in the case of an ill-tem-
pered or peevish man, or of one who shows the effects
of prolonged suffering, with dulled eyes and drooping
jaw, or who perceives a bad taste in his food, or who
finds it difficult to perform some trifling act, such as
threading a needle. In these cases a frown may often be
seen, but it will be accompanied by some other expres-
sion, which will entirely prevent the countenance hav-

* * History of the Abipories,' Eng. translat. vol. ii. p. 59,
as quoted by Lubbock, * Origin of Civilisation,' 1870, p. 355.




. 11

ing an appearance of intellectual energy or of profound

"We may now inquire how it is that a frown should
express the perception of something difficult or dis-
agreeable, either in thought or action. In the same
way as naturalists find it advisable to trace the embryo-
logical development of an organ in order fully to under-
stand its structure, so with the movements of expression
it is advisable to follow as nearly as possible the same
plan. The earliest and almost sole expression seen dur-
ing the first days of infancy, and then often exhibited,
is that displayed during the act of screaming; and
screaming is excited, both at first and for some time
afterwards, by every distressing or displeasing sensation
and emotion,—by hunger, pain, anger, jealousy, fear,
&c. At such times the muscles round the eyes are
strongly contracted; and this, as I believe, explains to a
large extent the act of frowning during the remainder
of our lives. I repeatedly observed my own infants,
from under the age of one week to that of two or three
months, and found that when a screaming-fit came on
gradually, the first sign was the contraction of the cor-
rugators, which produced a slight frown, quickly fol-
lowed by the contraction of the other muscles round
the eyes. When an infant is uncomfortable or unwell,
little frowns—as I record in my notes—may be seen, in-
cessantly passing like shadows over its face; these being
generally, but not always, followed sooner or later by
a crying-fit. For instance, I watched for some time a
baby, between seven and eight weeks old, sucking some
milk which was cold, and therefore displeasing to him;
and a steady little frown was maintained all the time.
This was never developed into an actual crying-fit,
though occasionally every stage of close approach could
be observed.


u Vi



-f    I
F   ^



224:                             REFLECTION.                     CHAP, IX.

As the habit of contracting the brows has been fol-
lowed by infants during innumerable generations,, at the
commencement of every crying or screaming fit, it has
become firmly associated with the incipient sense of
something distressing or disagreeable. Hence under
similar circumstances it would be apt to be continued
during maturity., although never then developed into a
crying-fit. Screaming or weeping begins to be volun-
tarily restrained at an early period of life., whereas frown-
ing is hardly ever restrained at any age. It is perhaps
worth notice that with children much given to weeping,
anything which perplexes their minds, and which would
cause most other children merely to frown, readily
makes them weep. So with certain classes of the insane,
any effort of mind, however slight, which with an ha-
bitual f rowner would cause a slight frown, leads to their
weeping in an unrestrained manner. It is not more sur-
prising that the habit of contracting the brows at the
first perception of something distressing, although
gained during infancy, should be retained during the
rest of our lives, than that many other associated habits
acquired at an early age should be permanently retained
both by man and the lower animals. For instance, full-
grown cats, when feeling warm and comfortable, often
retain the habit of alternately protruding their fore-feet
with extended toes, which habit they practised for a
definite purpose whilst sucking their mothers.

Another and distinct cause has probably strengthened
the habit of frowning., whenever the mind is intent on
any subject and encounters some difficulty. Vision is
the most important of all the senses, and during prime-
val times the closest attention must have been incessantly
directed towards distant objects for the sake of obtain-
ing prey and avoiding danger. I remember being struck,
whilst travelling in parts of South America, which were

CHAP. IX.                       REFLECTION".               .              225

dangerous from the presence of Indians, how incessantly,
yet as it appeared unconsciously, the half-wild Gauchos
closely scanned the whole horizon. Now, when any one
with no covering on his head (as must have been abo-
riginally the case with mankind), strives to the utmost
to distinguish in broad daylight, and especially if the
sky is bright, a distant object, he almost invariably con-
tracts his brows to prevent the entrance of too much
light; the lower eyelids, cheeks, and upper lip being at
the same time raised, so as to lessen the orifice of the
eyes. I have purposely asked several persons, young
and old, to look, under the above circumstances, at dis-
tant objects, making them believe that I only wished
to test the power of their vision; and they all behaved
in the manner just described. Some of them, also, put
their open, flat hands over their eyes to keep out the
excess of light. Gratiolet, after making some remarks
to nearly the same effect,5 says, " Ce sont la des atti-
tudes de vision difficile." He concludes that the muscles
round the eyes contract partly for the sake of excluding
too much light (which appears to me the more impor-
tant end), and partly to prevent all rays striking the
retina, except those which come direct from the object
that is scrutinized. Mr. Bowman, whom I consulted on
this point, thinks that the contraction of the surround-
ing muscles may, in addition, " partly sustain the con-
sensual movements of the two eyes, by giving a firmer
support while the globes are brought to binocular vision
by their own proper muscles."

As the effort of viewing with care under a bright                        * \

light a distant object is both difficult and irksome, and                         * f

.......                                                                                                                  '"   j

8 ' De la Physionomie,' pp. 15, 144,  146.    Mr. Herbert                        J*

Spencer accounts for frowning exclusively by the habit                           *   *

of contracting the brows as a shade to the eyes in a bright
light: see * Principles of Physiology,' 2nd edit. 1872, p. 546,

226                             MEDITATION.                     CHAP. IX.

as this effort has been habitually accompanied,, during
numberless generations, by the contraction of the eye-
brows, the habit of frowning will thus have been much
strengthened; although it was originally practised dur-
ing infancy from a quite independent cause., namely as
the first step in the protection of the eyes during scream-
ing. There is, indeed, miich analogy, as far as the state
of the mind is concerned, between intently scrutinizing
a distant object, and following out an obscure train of
thought, or performing some little and troublesome me-
chanical work. The belief that the habit of contracting
the brows is continued when there is no need whatever
to exclude too much light, receives support from the
cases formerly alluded to, in which the eyebrows or eye-
lids are acted on under certain circumstances in a use-
less manner, from having been similarly used, under
analogous circumstances, for a serviceable purpose.
For instance, we voluntarily close our eyes when we do
not wish to see any object, and we are apt to close them,
when we reject a proposition, as if we could not or would
not see it; or when we think about something horrible.
We raise OUT eyebrows when we wish to see quickly all
round us, and we often do the same, when we earnestly
desire to remember something; acting as if we endeav-
oured to see it.

Abstraction. Meditation.—When a person is lost in
thought with his mind absent, or, as it is sometimes
said, " when he is in a brown study," he does not frown,
but his eyes appear vacant. The lower eyelids are gen-
erally raised and wrinkled, in the same manner as when
a short-sighted person tries to distinguish a distant ob-
ject; and the upper orbicular muscles are at the same
time slightly contracted. The wrinkling of the lower
eyelids under these circumstances has been observed




with, some savages., as by Mr. Dyson Lacy with the Aus-
tralians of Queensland, and several times by Mr. Geach
with the Malays of the interior of Malacca. What the
meaning or cause of this action may be, cannot at pres-
ent be explained; but here we have another instance of
movement round the eyes in relation to the state of the

The vacant expression of the eyes is very peculiar, and
at once shows when a man is completely lost in thought.
Professor Bonders has, with his usual kindness, investi-
gated this subject for me. He has observed others in
this condition, and has been himself observed by Pro-
fessor Engelmann. The eyes are not then fixed on any
object, and therefore not, as I had imagined, on some
distant object. The lines of vision of the two eyes even
often become slightly divergent; the divergence, if the
head be held vertically, with the plane of vision hori-
zontal, amounting to .an angle of 2° as a maximum.
This was ascertained by observing the crossed double
image of a distant object. "When the head droops for-
ward, as often occurs with a man absorbed in thought,
owing to the general relaxation of his muscles, if the
plane of vision be still horizontal, the eyes are necessarily
a little turned upwards, and then the divergence is as
much as 3°, or 3° 5': if the eyes are turned still more
upwards, it amounts to between 6° and 7°. Professor
Bonders attributes this divergence to the almost com-
plete relaxation of certain muscles of the eyes, which
would be apt to follow from the mind being wholly ab-
sorbed.6 The active condition of the muscles of the eyes

0 Gratiolet remarks (De la Phys. p. 35), " Quancl 1'atten-
tion est fixee stir qxielqtie image ititerieure, Pceil regarde.
clans le vide et s' axitomatiqxiement a, la contem-
plation cle 1'esprit." But this view'hardly deserves to be
called an explanation.

228                          ILL-TEMPER                    CHAP. IX.

is that of convergence; and Professor Bonders remarks,
as bearing on their divergence during a period of com-
plete abstraction, that when one eye becomes blind, it
almost always, after a short lapse of time, deviates out-
wards; for its muscles are no longer used in moving the
eyeball inwards for the sake of binocular vision.

Perplexed reflection is often accompanied by certain
movements or gestures. At such times we commonly
raise our hands to our foreheads, mouths, or chins; but
we do not act thus, as far as I have seen, when we are
quite lost in meditation, and no difficulty is encountered.
Plautus, describing in one of his plays 7 a puzzled man,
says, " Now look, he has pillared his chin upon his
hand." Even so trifling and apparently unmeaning a
gesture as the raising of the hand to the face has been
observed with some savages. M. J. Mansel Weale has
seen it with the Kafirs of South Africa; and the native
chief Gaika adds, that men then " sometimes pull their
beards." Mr. "Washington Matthews, who attended to
some of the wildest tribes of Indians in the western
regions of the United States, remarks that he has seen
them when concentrating their thoughts, bring their
" hands, usually the thumb and index finger, in contact
with some part of the face, commonly the upper lip."
We can understand why the forehead should be pressed
or rubbed, as deep thought tries the brain; but why the
hand should be raised to the mouth or face is far from

Ill-temper.—We have seen that frowning is the nat-
ural expression of some difficulty encountered, or of
something disagreeable experienced either in thought or
action, and he whose mind is often and readily affected

~'~v                                              7 ' Miles Gloriosus,' act ii. sc. 2.


CHAP. IX.                       ILL-TEMPER.                              229

in this way., will be apt to be ill-tempered, or slightly
angry, or peevish, and will commonly show it by frown-
ing. But a cross expression, due to a frown, may be
counteracted, if the mouth appears sweet, from being
habitually drawn into a smile, and the eyes are bright
and cheerful. So it will be if the eye is clear and steady,
and there is the appearance of earnest reflection. Frown-
ing, with some depression of the corners of the mouth,
which is a sign of grief, gives an air of peevishness. If
a child (see Plate IV., fig. 2)8 frowns much whilst cry-
ing, but does not strongly contract in the usual man-
ner the orbicular muscles, a well-marked expression of
anger or even of rage, together with misery, is dis-

If the whole frowning brow be drawn much down-
ward by the contraction of the pyramidal muscles of the
nose, which produces transverse wrinkles or folds across
the base of the nose, the expression becomes one of mo-
roseness. Duchenne believes that the contraction of
this muscle, without any frowning, gives the appearance
of extreme and aggressive hardness.0 But I much doubt
whether this is a true or natural expression. I have
shown Duchenne's photograph of a young man, with
this muscle strongly contracted by means of galvanism,
to eleven persons, including some artists, and none of
them could form an idea what was intended, except one,
a girl, who answered correctly, " surely reserve." When
I first looked at this photograph, knowing what was in-
tended, my imagination added, as I believe, what was
necessary, namely, a frowning brow; and consequently

8 The original photograph by Herr Kindermann is much
more expressive than this copy, as it shows the frown on
the brow more plainly.

8 ' Mecanisme de la Physionomie liumame,' Album,
Legencle iv. figs. 16—18.




the expression appeared to me true and extremely mo-

A firmly closed mouth, in addition to a lowered and
frowning brow,, gives determination to the expression,
or may make it obstinate and sullen. How it comes
that the firm closure of the mouth gives the appear-
ance of determination will presently be discussed. An
expression of sullen obstinacy has been clearly recog-
nized by my informants, in the natives of six different
regions of Australia. It is well marked, according to
Mr. Scott, with the Hindoos. It has been recognized
with the Malays, Chinese, Kafirs, Abyssinians, and in
a conspicuous degree, according to Dr. Kothrock, with
the wild Indians of North America, and according to
Mr. D. Forbes, with the Aymaras of Bolivia. I have
also observed it with the Araucanos of southern Chili.
Mr. Dyson Lacy remarks that the natives of Australia,
when in this frame of mind, sometimes fold their arms
across their breasts, an attitude which may be seen with
us. A firm determination, amounting to obstinacy, is,
also, sometimes expressed by both shoulders being kept
raised, the meaning of which gesture will be explained
in the following chapter.

• With young children sulkiness is shown by pouting,
or, as it is sometimes called, " making a snout." 10 When
the corners of the mouth are much depressed, the lower
lip is a little everted and protruded; and this is like-
wise called a pout. But the pouting here referred to,
consists of the protrusion of both lips into a tubular
form, sometimes to such an extent as to project as far
as the end of the nose, if this be short. Pouting is gen-
erally accompanied by frowning, and sometimes by the

10 Hensleigi. Wedgwood on ' The Origin of Language,'
1866, p. 78.




utterance of a booing or whooing noise. This expression
is remarkable, as almost the sole one, as far as I know,
which is exhibited much more plainly during childhood,
at least with Europeans, than during maturity. There
is, however, some tendency to the protrusion of the lips
with the adults of all races under the influence of great
rage. Some children pout when they are shy, and they
can then hardly be called sulky.

From inquiries which I have made in several large
families, pouting does not seem very common with Euro-
pean children; but it prevails throughout the world, and
must be both common and strongly marked with most
savage races, as it has caught the attention of many ob-
servers. It has been noticed in eight different districts
of Australia; and one of my informants remarks how
greatly the lips of the children are then protruded. Two
observers have seen pouting with the children of Hin-
doos; three, with those of the Kafirs and Fingoes of
South Africa, and with the Hottentots; and two, with
the children of the wild Indians of North America.
Pouting has also been observed .with the Chinese, Abys-
sinians, Malays of Malacca, I) yaks of Borneo, and often
with the New Zealanders. Mr. Mansel Wcale informs
me that he has seen the lips much protruded, not only
with the children of the Kafirs, but with the adults of
both sexes when sulky; and Mr. Stack has sometimes
observed the same thing with the men, and very fre-
quently with the women of New Zealand. A trace of the
same expression may occasionally be detected even with
adult Europeans.

We thus see that the protrusion of the lips, espe-
cially with young children, is characteristic of sulkiness
throughout the greater part of the world. This move-
ment apparently results from the retention, chiefly dur-
ing youth, of a primordial habit, or from an occasional

232                              SULKINESS.                       CHAP. IX.

reversion to it. Young orangs and chimpanzees pro-
trude their lips to an extraordinary degree, as described
in a former chapter, when they are discontented, some-
what angry, or sulky; also when they are surprised, a
little frightened, and even when slightly pleased. Their
mouths are protruded apparently for the sake of mak-
ing the various noises proper to these several states of
mind; and its shape, as I observed with the chimpanzee,
differed slightly when the cry of pleasure and that of
anger were uttered. As soon as these animals become
enraged, the shape of the mouth wholly changes, and
the teeth are exposed. The adult orang when wounded
is said to emit " a singular cry, consisting at first of high
notes, which at length deepen into a low roar. While
giving out the high notes he thrusts out his lips into a
funnel shape, but in uttering the low notes he holds his
mouth wide open." 13- With the gorilla, the lower lip is
said to be capable of great elongation. If then our semi-
human progenitors protruded their lips when sulky or
a little angered, in the same manner as do the existing
anthropoid apes, it is not an anomalous, though a curi-
ous fact, that our children should exhibit, when similarly
affected, a trace of the same expression, together with
some tendency to utter a noise. For it is not at all un-
usual for animals to retain, more or less perfectly, during
early youth, and subsequently to lose, characters which
were aboriginally possessed by their adult progenitors,
and which are still retained by distinct species, their
near relations.

Nor is it an anomalous fact that the children of sav-
ages should- exhibit a stronger tendency to protrude
their lips, when sulky, than the children of civilized

u Miiller, as quoted by Huxley, * Man's Place in Nature,'
1863, p. 38.

CHAP. IX.                      DECISION.                              233

Europeans; for the essence of savagery seems to consist
in the retention of a primordial condition,, and this occa-
sionally holds good even with bodily peculiarities.12 It
may be objected to this view of the origin of pouting,
that the anthropoid apes likewise protrude their lips
when astonished and even when a little pleased; whilst
with us this expression is generally confined to a sulky
frame of mind. But we shall see in a future chapter
that with men of various races surprise does sometimes
lead to a slight protrusion of the lips, though great sur-
prise or astonishment is more commonly shown by the
mouth being widely opened. As when we smile or laugh
we draw back the corners of the month, we have lost
any tendency to protrude the lips, when pleased, if in-
deed our early progenitors thus expressed pleasure.

A little gesture made by sulky children may here be
noticed, namely, their " showing a cold shoulder." This
has a different meaning, as, I believe, from the keeping
both shoulders raised. A cross child, sitting on its par-
ent's knee, will lift up the near shoulder, then, jerk it
away, as if from a caress, and afterwards give a backward
push with it, as if to push away the offender. I have
seen a child, .standing at some distance from any one,
clearly express its feelings by raising one shoulder, giving
it a little backward movement, and then turning away its-
whole body.

Decision or determination.—The firm closure of the
mouth tends to give an expression of determination or
decision to the countenance. No determined man prob-
ably ever had an habitually gaping mouth. Hence, also,
.a small and weak lower jaw, which seems to indicate that

121 have given several instances in my * Descent of Man,'
vol. i. chap. iv.





the month is not hahitually and firmly closed., is com-
monly thought to be characteristic of feebleness of char-
acter. A prolonged effort of any kind, whether of body
or mind., implies previous determination; and if it can
be shown that the mouth is generally closed with firm-
ness before and during a great and continued exertion
of the muscular system, then, through the principle of
association, the mouth would almost certainly be closed
as soon as any determined resolution was taken. Now ,
several observers have noticed that a man,, in commenc-
ing any violent muscular effort, invariably first distends
his lungs with air, and then compresses it by the strong
contraction of the muscles of the chest; and to effect
this the mouth must be firmly closed. Moreover, as soon
as the man is compelled to draw breath, he still keeps
his chest as much distended as possible.
• Various causes have been assigned for this manner of
acting. 'Sir C. Bell maintains 13 that the chest is dis-
tended with air, and is kept distended at such times, in
order to give a fixed support to the muscles which are
thereto attached. Hence, as he remarks, when two men
are engaged in a deadly contest, a terrible silence pre-
vails, broken only by hard stifled breathing. There is
silence, because to expel the air in the utterance of any
sound would be to relax the support for the muscles of
the arms. If an outcry is heard, supposing the struggle
to take place in the dark, we at once know that one of
the two has given up in despair.

Gratiolet admits14 that when a man has to struggle
with another to his utmost, or has to support a great
weight, or to keep for a long time the same forced atti-
tude, it is necessary for him first to make a deep inspira-

13 * Anatomy of Expression,' p. 190.
u ' De la Physionomie,' pp. 118-121.

CHAP. IX.                      t DECISION.                              235

tion, and then to cease breathing; but he thinks that
Sir C. Bell's explanation is erroneous. He maintains
that arrested respiration retards the circulation of the
blood, of which I believe there is no doubt, and he ad-
duces some curious evidence from the structure of the
lower animals, showing, on the one hand, that a retarded
circulation is necessary for prolonged muscular exertion,
and, on the other hand, that a rapid circulation is neces-
sary for rapid movements. According to this view, when
we commence any great exertion, we close our mouths
and stop breathing, in order to retard the circulation of
the blood. Gratiolet sums up the subject by saying,.
" C'est la la vraie theorie de Peffort eontinu;" but how
far this theory is admitted by other physiologists I do
not know.

Dr. Piderit accounts15 for the firm closure of the
mouth during strong muscular exertion, on the principle
that the influence of the will spreads to other muscles be-
sides those necessarily brought into action in making any
particular exertion; and it is natural that the muscles
of respiration and of the mouth, from being so habit-
ually used, should be especially liable to be thus acted
on. It appears to me that there probably is some truth
in this view, for we are apt to press the teeth hard to-
gether during violent exertion, and this is not requisite
to prevent expiration, whilst the muscles of the chest
are strongly contracted.

Lastly, when a man has to perform some delicate and
difficult operation, not requiring the exertion of any
strength, he nevertheless generally closes his mouth and
ceases for a time to breathe; but he acts thus in order
that the movements of his chest may not disturb those
of his arms. A person, for instance, whilst threading a

1B 'Mimik und Physiognomik,' s. 79.





needle,, may he seen to compress his lips and either to
stop breathing., or to breathe as quietly as possible. So
it was, as formerly stated, with a young and sick chim-
panzee, whilst it amused itself by killing flies with its
knuckles, as they buzzed about on the window-panes.
To perform an action, however trifling, if difficult, im-
plies some amount of previous determination.

There appears nothing improbable in all the above
assigned causes having come into play in different de-
grees, either conjointly or separately, on various occa-
sions. The result would be a well-established habit,
now perhaps inherited, of firmly closing the mouth at
the commencement of and during any violent and pro-
longed exertion, or any delicate operation. Through
the principle of association there would also be a strong
tendency towards this same habit, as soon as the mind
had resolved on any particular action or line of con-
duct, even before there was any bodily exertion, or if
none were requisite. The habitual and firm closure of
the mouth would thus come to show decision of char-
acter; and decision readily passes into obstinacy.









Hatred—Rage, effects of on the system—Uncovering of the
teeth—Bag-e in the insane—Anger and indig-nation—As

expressed by the various races of man—Sneering autl
defiance—The uncovering' of the canine tooifi on one
side of the face.

IF we have suffered or expect to suffer some wilful
injury from a man, or If he Is In any way offensive to
us, we dislike him; and dislike easily rises into hatred.
Such feelings, if experienced In a moderate degree, are
not clearly expressed by any movement of the body or
features, excepting perhaps by a certain gravity of be-
haviour, or by some ill-temper. Few Individuals, how-
ever, can long reflect about a hated person, without feel-
Ing and exhibiting signs of Indignation or rage. But
if the offending person be quite insignificant, we ex-
perience merely disdain or contempt. If, on the other
hand, he Is all-powerful, then hatred passes into terror,
as when a slave thinks about a cruel master, or a
about a bloodthirsty malignant deity.1 Most of our
emotions are so closely connected with their expression,
that they hardly exist if the body remains passive—the
nature of the expression depending in chief part on the

1 See some remarks to this effect by Mr. Bains * The
Emotions and the Will,' 2nd edit. 1865, p." 127.







nature of the actions which have been habitually per-
formed under this particular state of the mind. A man,
for instance, may know that his life is in the extremest
peril, and may strongly desire to save it; yet, as Louis
XVI. said, when surrounded by a fierce mob, "Am I
afraid? feel my pulse." So a man may intensely hate
another, but until his bodily frame is affected, he can-
not be said to be enraged.

Rage.—I have already had occasion to treat of this
emotion in the third chapter, when discussing the direct
influence of the excited sensorium on the body, in com-
bination with the effects of habitually associated actions.
Eage exhibits itself in the most diversified manner. The
heart and circulation are-always affected; the face red-
dens or becomes purple, with the veins on the forehead
arid neck distended. The reddening of the skin has been
observed with the copper-coloured Indians of. South
America,2 and even, as it is said, on the white cicatrices
left by old wounds on negroes.3 Monkeys also redden
from passion. With one of my own infants, under four
months old, I repeatedly observed that the first symp-
tom of an approaching passion was the rushing of the
blood into his bare scalp. On the other hand, the action
of the heart is sometimes so much impeded by great rage,
that the countenance becomes pallid or livid,4 and not
a few men with heart-disease have dropped down dead
under this powerful emotion.

2 Reng-ger, Naturgesch. der Saugethiere von Paraguay,
1830, s. 3.

8 Sir C. Bell, ' Anatomy of Expression,' p. 96. On the
other hand, Dr. Burgess (* Physiology of Blushing,' 1839,
p. 31) speaks of the reddening of a cicatrix in a negress
as of the nature of a blush.

4 Moreau and Gratiolet have discussed the colour of the
face under the influence of intense passion: see the edit.
of 1820 of Lavater, vol. iv. pp. 282 and 300; and Gratiolet,
* De la Physionomie,'p. 345.

CHAP. X.                            ANG-ER.                                    239

The respiration is likewise affected; the chest heaves,
and the dilated nostrils quiver.5 As Tennyson writes,
" sharp breaths of anger puffed her fairy nostrils out."
Hence we have such expressions as " breathing out
vengeance," and " fuming with anger." °

The excited brain gives strength to the muscles, and
at the same time energy to the will. The body is com-
monly held erect ready for instant action, but sometimes
it is bent forward towards the offending person, with
the limbs more or less rigid. The mouth is generally
closed with firmness, showing fixed determination, and
the teeth are clenched or ground together. Such ges-
tures as the raising of the arms, with the fists clenched,
as if to strike the offender, are common. Few men in
a great passion, and telling some one to begone, can re-
sist acting as if they intended to strike or push the man
violently away. The desire, indeed, to strike often be-
comes so intolerably strong, that inanimate objects are
struck or dashed to the ground; but the gestures fre-
quently become altogether purposeless or frantic. Young
children, when in a violent rage roll on the ground on
their backs or bellies, screaming, kicking, scratching, or

5 Sir C. Bell (' Anatomy of Expression,' pp. 91, 107) has
fully discussed this subject. Moreau remarks (in the edit,
of 1820 of ' La Physionomie, par G. Lavater,' vol. iv. p. 237),
and quotes Portal in confirmation, that asthmatic patients
acquire permanently expanded nostrils, owing1 to the ha-
bitual contraction of the elevatory muscles of the wings
of the nose. The explanation by Dr. Piderit (' Mimik und
Physiognomik,' s. 82) of the distension of the nostrils,
namely, to allow free breathing whilst the mouth is closed
and the teeth clenched, does not appear to be nearly so
correct as that by Sir C. Bell, who attributes it to the sym-
pathy (i. e. habitual co-action) of all the respiratory mus-
cles. The nostrils of an angry man may be seen to become
dilated, although his mouth is open..

0 Mr. Wedgwood, ' On the Origin of Language,' 1860,
p. 76. He also observes that the sound of hard breathing
" is represented by the syllables 'puffy huff, wM'ff, whence a
huff is a fit of ill-temper."

240                                   ANGER.                             CHAP. X.

biting everything within reach. So it is, as I hear from
Mr. Scott, with Hindoo children; and, as we have seen,
with the young of the anthropomorphous apes.

But the muscular system is often affected in a wholly
different way; for trembling is a frequent consequence
of extreme rage. The paralysed lips then refuse to obey
the will, " and the voice sticks in the throat;"7 or it
is rendered loud, harsh, and discordant. If there be
much and rapid speaking, the mouth froths. The hair
sometimes bristles; but I shall return to this subject
in another chapter, when I treat of the mingled emo-
tions of rage and terror. There is in most cases a
strongly-marked frown on the forehead; for this follows
from the sense of anything displeasing or difficult, to-
gether with concentration of mind. But sometimes the
brow, instead of being much contracted and lowered,
remains smooth, with the glaring eyes kept widely open.
The eyes are always bright, or may, as Homer expresses
it, glisten with fire. They are sometimes bloodshot, and
are said to protrude from their sockets—the result, no
doubt, of the head being gorged with blood, as shown
by the veins being distended. According to Gratiolet,8
the pupils are always contracted in rage, and I hear from
Dr. Crichton Browne that this is the case in the fierce
delirium of meningitis; but the movements of the iris
under the influence of the different emotions is a very
obscure subject.

Shakspeare suras up the chief characteristics of rage
as follows:—

" In peace there's nothing so becomes a man,
As modest stillness and humility;
But when the blast of war blows in our ears,

7 Sir C. Bell (' Anatomy of Expression,' p. 95) has some
excellent remarks on the expression of rage.
8' De la Physionomie,' 1865, p. 346.




Then imitate the action of the tiger:
Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood,
Then lend the eye a terrible aspect;
Now set the teeth, and stretch the nostril wide,
Hold hard the breath, and bend up every spirit
To his full height!   On, on, you noblest English."

Henry F., act iii. sc. 1.

The lips are sometimes protruded during rage in a
manner, the meaning of which I do not understand,
unless it depends on our descent from some ape-like
animal. Instances have been observed, not only with
Europeans, but with the Australians and Hindoos. The
lips, however, are much more commonly retracted, the
grinning or clenched teeth being thus exposed. This
has been noticed by almost every one who has written
on expression.0 The appearance is as if the teeth were
uncovered, ready for seizing or tearing an enemy, though
there may be no intention of acting in this manner. Mr.
Dyson Lacy has seen this grinning expression with the
Australians, when quarrelling, and so has Gaika with
the Kafirs of South America. Dickens,10 in speaking
of an atrocious murderer who had just been caught, and
was surrounded by a furious mob, describes " the people
as jumping up one behind another, snarling with their
teeth, and making at him like wild beasts." Every one
who has had much to do with young children must have

0 Sir C. Bell, ' Anatomy of Expression,' p. 177. Gratiolet
(De la Phys. p. 369) sa'ys, " les dents se decouvrent, et
iniitent symboliqxiement Faction de dechirer et de mordre."
If, instead of using* the vague term symboliqucment, Gratio-
let had said that the action was a remnant of a habit ac-
quired during- primeval times when oxir semi-h\imaii pro-
genitors fought together with their teeth, like gorillas and
orangs at-the present day, he would have been more intel-
ligible. Dr. Piderit (* Mimik,' &c., s. 82) also speaks of
the retraction of the xipper lip during rage. In an engrav-
ing of one of Hogarth's wonderful pictures, passion is rep-
resented in the plainest manner by the open glaring eyes,
frowning forehead, and exposed grinning teeth.

10 * Oliver Twist,' vol. iii. p. £45.

ANG-BE.                              CHAP. X.

seen how naturally they take to biting, when in a passion.
It seems as instinctive in them as in young crocodiles,
who snap their little jaws as soon as they emerge from
the egg.

A grinning expression and the protrusion of the lips
appear sometimes to go together. A close observer says
that he has seen many instances of intense hatred (which
can hardly be distinguished from rage, more or less sup-
pressed) in Orientals, and once in an elderly English
woman. In all these cases there " was a grin, not a scowl
—the lips lengthening, the cheeks settling downwards,
the eyes half-closed, whilst the brow remained perfectly
calm." 1X

This retraction of the lips and uncovering of the teeth
during paroxysms of rage, as if to bite the offender, is
so remarkable, considering how seldom the teeth are
used by men in fighting, that I inquired from Dr. J.
Grichton Browne whether the habit was common in the
insane whose passions are unbridled. He informs me
that he has repeatedly observed it both with the insane
and idiotic, and has given me the following illustra-

Shortly before receiving my letter, he witnessed an
uncontrollable outbreak of anger and delusive jealousy
in an insane lady. At first she vituperated her husband,
and whilst doing so f oaineoT at the mouth. Next she ap-
proached close to him with compressed lips, and a viru-
lent set frown. Then she drew back her lips, especially
•the corners of the upper lip, and showed her teeth, at
the same time aiming a vicious blow at him. A second
case is that of an old soldier, who, when he is requested
to conform to the rules of the establishment, gives way
•to discontent, terminating in fury. He commonly begins

11 * The Spectator,' July 1-1, 1868,- p. 819.

CHAP. X.                            ANGER.                                    34.3

by asking Dr. Browne whether he is not ashamed to
treat him in such a manner. He then swears and blas-
phemes, paces up and down, tosses his arms wildly about,
and menaces any one near him. At last, as his exaspera-
tion culminates, he rushes tip towards Dr. Browne with
a peculiar sidelong movement, shaking his doubled fist,
and threatening destruction. Then his upper lip may
be seen to be raised, especially at the corners, so that
his huge canine teeth are exhibited. He hisses forth his
curses through his set teeth, and his whole expression
assumes the character of extreme ferocity. A similar
description is applicable to another man, excepting that
he generally foams at the mouth and spits, dancing and
jumping about in a strange rapid manner, shrieking out
his maledictions in a shrill falsetto voice.

Dr. Browne also informs me of the case of an epileptic
idiot, incapable of independent movements, and who
spends the whole day in playing with some toys; but
his temper is morose and easily roused into fierceness.
When any one touches his toys, he slowly raises his:
head from its habitual downward position, and fixes his
eyes on the offender, with a tardy yet angry scowl. If
the annoyance be repeated, he draws back his thick lips
and reveals a prominent row of hideous fangs (large-
canines being especially noticeable), and then makes a
quick and cruel clutch with his open hand at the offend-
ing person. The rapidity of this clutch, as Dr. Browne
remarks, is marvellous in a being ordinarily so torpid
that he takes about fifteen seconds, when attracted by
any noise, to turn his head from one side to the other.
If, when thus incensed, a handkerchief, book, or other
article, be placed into his hands, he drags it to his mouth
and bites it. ' Mr. N"icol has likewise described to me two
cases of insane patients, whose lips are retracted during-
paroxysms of rage.                    .           . .' •*




Dr. Maudsley, after detailing various strange animal-
like traits in idiots, asks whether these are not due to
the reappearance of primitive instincts—" a faint echo
from a far-distant past, testifying to a kinship which
man has almost outgrown." He adds, that as every
human brain passes, in the course of its development,
through the same stages as those occurring in the lower
vertebrate animals, and as the brain of an idiot is in an
arrested condition, we may presume that it " will mani-
fest its most primitive functions, and no higher func-
tions." Dr. Maudsley thinks that the same view may
be extended to the brain in its degenerated condition
in some insane patients; and asks, whence come "the
savage snarl, the destructive disposition, the obscene lan-
guage, the wild howl, the offensive habits, displayed by
some of the insane? Why should a human being, de-
prived of his reason, ever become so brutal in character,
as some do, unless he has the brute nature within
him? "12 This question must, as it would appear, be
answered in the affirmative.

Anger, Indignation.—These states of the mind differ
from rage only in degree, and there is no marked dis-
tinction in their characteristic signs. Under moderate
anger the action of the heart is a little increased, the
colour heightened, and the eyes become bright. The
respiration is likewise a little hurried; and as all the
muscles serving for this function act in association, the
wings of the nostrils are somewhat raised to allow of a
free indraught of air; and this is a highly characteristic
sign of indignation. The mouth is commonly corn-
pressed, and there is almost always a frown on the brow.
Instead of the frantic gestures of extreme rage, an in-
dignant man unconsciously throws himself into an atti-

1 ' Body and Mind,' 1870, pp. 51-53.

OHAJ?. X.                          A^GER.                               245

"tiide ready for attacking or striking his enemy,, whom
lie will perhaps scan from head to foot in defiance.
He carries his head erect, with his chest well expand-                           |

ed> and the feet planted firmly on the ground.    He                            |

Holds   his   amis  in   various   positions,   with   one   or                            /<

"both elbows squared, or with the arms rigidly sus-
pended by his sides. With European? the fists are eom-
xnonly clenched.13 The figures 1 and 2 in Plate VI.                            „

are fairly good representations of men simulating indig-                            \

nation. Any one may see in a mirror, if lie will vividly
imagine that he has been insulted and demands an                            J

explanation in an angry tone of voice, that lie suddenly                            *

and unconsciously throws himself into some such at-                            t1

tltude.                                                                                                t

Hage, anger, and indignation are exhibited in nearly

the same manner throughout the world; and the fol-                          ;

lowing descriptions may be worth giving as evidence of                          *

this, and as illustrations of some of the foregoing re-
marks.   There is, however, an exception with respect to                          *
clenching the fists, which seems confined chiefly to the
znen who fight with their fists.   With the Australians
only one of my informants has seen the fists clenched.
All agree about the body being held erect; and all, with                          *
two exceptions, state that the brows are heavily con-
tracted.   Some of them allude to the firmly-compressed
mouth, the distended nostrils, and flashing eyes. Accord-                              ;
Ing to the Kev. Mr. Taplin, rage, with the Australians,                          |
Is expressed by the lips being protruded, the eyes being                           f/
widely open; and in the case of the women by their danc-                            I
Ing about and casting dust into the air.   Another ob-                             ^

12 Le Bran, in his well-known * Conference stir 1'Expres-                               \

sion ' (* La Physionomie, par Lavater,* edit, of 1820, TO!, ix.                             |

p. 268), remarks that anger is expressed by the clenching                             4;

of the fists.    See, to the same effect, Huschke, * Mimices              ,                   \

et  PhysiogTiomices, Fragraentum Physiolog'icum,* 1S24, p.                               '

20.   Also Sir C. Bell,4 Anatomy of Expression/ p. 219.                                          »




24:6                                ANGER.                          CHAP. X,

server speaks of the native men., when enraged/throwing
their arms wildly about.

I have received similar accounts, except as to the
clenching of the fists, in regard to the Malays of the
Malacca peninsula, the Abyssinians, and the natives of
South Africa. So it is with the Dakota Indians of North
America; and, according to Mr. Matthews, they then
hold their heads erect, frown, and often stalk away with
long strides. Mr. Bridges states that the Fuegians, when
enraged, frequently stamp on the ground, walk distract-
edly about, sometimes cry and grow pale. The Bev. Mr.
Stack watched a New Zealand man and woman quarrel-
ling, and made the following entry in his note-book:
" Eyes dilated, body swayed violently backwards and for-
wards, head inclined forwards, fists clenched, now thrown
behind the body, now directed towards each other's
faces." Mr. Swinhoe says that my description agrees
with what he has seen of the Chinese, excepting that an
angry man generally inclines his body towards his an-
tagonist, and pointing at him, pours forth a volley of

Lastly, with respect to the natives of India, Mr. J.
Scott has sent me a full description of their gestures
and expression when enraged. Two low-caste Bengalees
disputed about a loan. At first they were calm, but soon
grew furious and poured forth the grossest abuse on each
other's relations and progenitors for many generations
past. Their gestures were very different from those of
Europeans; for though their chests were expanded and
shoulders squared, their arms remained rigidly sus-
pended, with the elbows turned inwards and the hands
alternately clenched and opened. Their shoulders were
often raised high, and then again lowered.- They looked
fiercely at each other from under their lowered and
strongly wrinkled brows, and their protruded lips were


firmly closed. They approached each other, with heads
and necks stretched forwards, and pushed., scratched,
and grasped at each other. This protrusion of the head
and body seems a common gesture with the enraged;
. and I have noticed it with degraded English women
whilst quarrelling violently in the streets. In such cases
it may be presumed that neither party expects to receive
a blow from the other.

A Bengalee employed in the Botanic Gardens was
accused, in the presence of Mr. Scott, by the native
overseer of having stolen a valuable plant. He listened
silently and scornfully to the accusation; his attitude
erect, chest expanded, mouth closed, lips protruding,
eyes firmly set and penetrating. He then defiantly
maintained his innocence, with upraised and clenched
hands, his head being now pushed forwards, with the
eyes widely open and eyebrows raised. Mr. Scott also
watched two Mechis, in Sikhim, quarrelling about their
share of payment. They soon got into a furious pas-
sion, and then their bodies became less erect, with their
heads pushed forwards; they made grimaces at each
other; their shoulders were raised; their arms rigidly
bent inwards at the elbows, and their hands spasmodic-
ally closed, but not properly clenched. They continually
approached and retreated from each other, and often
raised their arms as if to strike, but their hands were
open, and no blow was given. Mr. .Scott made similar
observations on the Lepchas whom he often saw quar-
relling, and he noticed that thoy kept their arms rigid
and almost parallel to their bodies, with the hands pushed
somewhat backwards and partially closed, but not

Sneering, Defiance: Uncovering tlie canine tooth on
one side.—The expression which I wish here to consider







differs but little from that already described, when the
lips are retracted and the grinning teeth exposed.   The
difference consists solely in the upper lip being retracted
in such a manner that the canine tooth on one side of
the face alone is shown; the face itself being generally
a little upturned and half averted from the person caus-
ing offence.   The other signs of rage are not necessarily
present.    This expression may occasionally he observed
in a person who sneers at or defies another, though there
may be no real anger; as when any one is playfully ac-
cused of some fault, and answers, " I scorn the imputa-
tion/5  The expression is not a common one, but I have
seen it exhibited with perfect distinctness by a lady
who was being quizzed by another person.   It was de-
scribed by Parsons as long ago as 1746, with an engrav-
ing, showing the uncovered canine on one side,14   Mr.
Rejlander, without my having made any allusion to the
subject, asked me whether I had ever noticed this ex-
pression, as he had been much struck by it.    He has
photographed for me (Plate IV. fig 1) a lady, who some-
times unintentionally displays the canine on one side,
and who can do so voluntarily with unusual distinctness.
The expression of a half -playful sneer graduates into
one  of great ferocity when, together with a heavily
frowning brow and fierce eye, the canine tooth is exposed.
A Bengalee boy was accused before Mr. Scott of some
misdeed.    The delinquent did not dare to give vent to
his wrath in words, but it was plainly shown on his
countenance, sometimes by a defiant frown, and some-
times " by a thoroughly canine snarl."   When this was
exhibited, "the corner of the lip over the eye-tooth,
which happened in this case to be large and projecting,
was raised on the side of his accuser, a strong frown

14 Transact. PMlosoph. Soc., Appendix, 1746, p. 65.


being still retained on the brow." Sir C. Bell states1B
that the actor Cooke could express the most determined
hate " when with the oblique cast of his eyes he drew up
the outer part of the upper lip, and discovered a sharp
angular tooth."

The uncovering of the canine tooth is the result of a
double movement. The angle or corner of the mouth
is drawn a little backwards, and at the same time a mus-
cle which runs parallel to and near the nose draws up
the outer part of the upper lip, and exposes the canine
on this side of the face. The contraction of this mus-
cle makes a distinct furrow on the cheek, and produces
strong wrinkles under the eye, especially at its inner
corner. The action is the same as that of a snarling dog;
and a dog when pretending to fight often draws up the
lip on one side alone, namely that facing his antagonist.
Our word sneer is in fact the same as snarl, which was
originally snar, the Iff being merely an element imply-
ing continuance of action." 10

I suspect that we see a trace of this same expression
in what is called a derisive or sardonic smile. The lips
are then kept joined or almost joined, but one corner
of the mouth is retracted on the side towards the de-
rided person; and this drawing back of the corner is
part of a true sneer. Although some persons smile
more on one side of their face than on the other, it is
not easy to understand why in cases of derision the
smile, if a real one, should so commonly be confined to
one side. I have also on these occasions noticed a slight
twitching of the muscle which draws up the outer part

15 * Anatomy of Expression,' p. 136.   Sir C. Bell calls (p.                            |

131) the muscles which uncover the canines the snarling                            |


10 Hensleigh Wedgwood,  ' Dictionary of  English Ety-
mology,' 1865, vol. iii. pp. 240, 243.

250                SNEERING AND DEFIANCE.

of the upper lip; and this movement, if fully carried.
ont; would have uncovered the canine, and would
produced a true sneer.

Mr. Bulnier, an Australian missionary in a
part of Gipps' Land, says, in answer to my qiiery abo~LX"fc
the uncovering of the canine on one side, " I find tb.a."fc
the natives in snarling at each other speak with, ttie
teeth closed, the upper lip drawn to one side, and &>
general angry expression of face; but they look direct"
at the person addressed." Three other observers in Aus-
tralia, one in Abyssinia, and one in China, answer ro.y
query on this head in the affirmative; but as the ex-
pression is rare, and as they enter into no details., I arrx
afraid of implicitly trusting them. It is, however, "by
no means improbable that this animal-like expression.
may be more common with savages than with, civilized.
races. Mr. Geaeh is an observer who may be fully
trusted, and he has observed it on one occasion in a Malay
in the interior of Malacca. The Rev. S. 0. Glenie an-
swers, "We have observed this expression with, tlie
natives of Ceylon, but not often." Lastly, in ISfortlx
America, Dr. Eothrock has seen it with some wild In-
dians, and often in a tribe adjoining the Atnahs.

Although the upper lip is certainly sometimes raised,
on one side alone in sneering at or defying any one,, I
do not know that this is always the case, for the face
is commonly half averted, and the expression is often
momentary. The movement being confined to one side
may not be an essential part of the expression., but may
depend on the proper muscles being incapable of move-
ment excepting on one side. I asked four persons "to
endeavour to act voluntarily in this manner; two could
expose the canine, only on the left side, one only on tlie
right side, and the fourth on neither side. Neverthe-
less it is by no means certain that these same persons,,

CHAP. X.          SNEERING AND DEFIANCE.                251

if defying any one in earnest., would not unconsciously
have uncovered their canine tooth on the side, which-
ever it might be, towards the offender. For we have
seen that some persons cannot voluntarily make their
eyebrows oblique, yet instantly act in this manner when
affected by any real, although most trifling, cause of dis-
tress. The power of voluntarily uncovering the canine
on one side of the face being thus often wholly lost,
indicates that it is a rarely used and almost abortive
action. It is indeed a surprising fact that man should
possess the power, or should exhibit any tendency to its
use; for Mr. Sutton has never noticed a snarling action
in our nearest allies, namely, the monkeys in the Zoologi-
cal Gardens, and he is positive that the baboons, though
furnished with great canines, never act thus, but un-
cover all their teeth when feeling savage and ready for
an attack. Whether the adult anthropomorphous apes,
in the males of whom the canines are much larger than
in the females, uncover them when prepared to fight,
is not known.

The expression here considered, whether that of a
playful sneer or ferocious snarl, is one of the most curi-
ous which occurs in man. It reveals his animal descent;
for no one, even if rolling on the ground in a deadly grap-
ple with an enemy, and attempting to bite him, would
try to use his canine teeth more than his other teeth.
We may readily believe from our affinity to the anthropo-
morphous apes that our male semi-human progenitors
possessed great canine teeth, and men are now occasion-
ally born having them of unusually large size, with inter-
spaces in the opposite jaw for their reception.17 We may
further suspect, notwithstanding that we have no sup-
port from analogy, that our semi-human progenitors un-

17 ' The Descent of Man,' 1871, vol. i. p. 126,

252                SNEERING AND DEFIANCE.          CHAP. X.

covered their canine teeth when prepared for battle, as
we still do when feeling ferocious, or when merely sneer-
ing at or defying some one, without any intention of
making a real attack with our teeth.







Contempt, scorn and disdain, variously expressed—.De-
risive smile—Gestures expressive of contempt—Disgust
—Guilt, deceit, pride, &c.—Helplessness or impotence
—Patience—Obstinacy—Shrug'ging" the shoulders com-
mon to most of the races of man—Signs of affirmation
and negation.

SCORN and disdain can hardly be distinguished from
contempt, excepting that they imply a rather more angry
frame of mind. Nor can they be clearly distinguished
from the feelings discussed in the last chapter under
the terms of sneering and defiance. ^Disgust is a sensa-
tion rather more distinct in its nature, and refers to
something revolting, primarily in relation to the sense
of taste, as actually perceived or vividly imagined; and
secondarily to anything which causes a similar feeling,
through the sense of smell, touch, and even of eyesight.^
Nevertheless, extreme contempt, or as it is often* called
loathing contempt, hardly differs from disgust. These
several conditions of the mind are, therefore, nearly re-
lated; and each of them may be exhibited in many dif-
ferent ways. Some writers have insisted chiefly on one
mode of expression, and others on a different mode.

254                               CONTEMPT.                        CHAP. XL

From this circumstance M. Lemoine has argued * that
their descriptions are not trustworthy. But we shall
immediately see that it is natural that the feelings which
we have here to consider should be expressed in many ,
different ways, inasmuch as various habitual actions
serve equally well, through the principle of association,
for their expression.

Scorn and disdain, as well as sneering and defiance,
may be displayed by a slight uncovering of the canine
tooth on one side of the face; and this movement ap-
pears to graduate into one closely like a smile. Or the
smile or laugh may be real, althoxigh one of derision;
and this implies that the offender is so insignificant that
he excites only amusement; but the amusement is gen-
erally a pretence. Gaika in his answers to my queries
remarks, that contempt is commonly shown by his coun-
trymen, the Kafirs, by smiling; and the Eajah Brooke
makes the same observation with respect to the Dyaks
of Borneo. As laughter is primarily the expression of
simple joy, very young children do not, I believe, ever
laugh in derision.

The partial closure of the eyelids, as Duchenne2 in-
sists, or the turning away of the eyes or of the whole
body, are likewise highly expressive of disdain. These
actions seem to declare that the despised person is not
worth looking at, or is disagreeable to behold. The ac-
companying photograph (Plate Y. fig. 1) by Mr. Bej-
lander, shows this form of disdain. It represents a young
lady, who is supposed to be tearing up the photograph
of a despised lover.

The most common method of expressing contempt is

1 * De la Physionomie et la Parole,' 1865, p. 89.
2 * Physionomie Humaine/ Album, Legende viii. p. 35.
Gratiolet also speaks (De la Phys. 1865, p. 52) of the turn-
ing away of the eyes and body.

-f., 5   sjc*,   -    -- ^    -»

CHAP. XL                        CONTEMPT.                               255

by movements about the nose, or round the mouth; but
the latter movements, when strongly pronounced, indi-
cate disgust. The nose may be slightly turned up, which
apparently follows from the turning up of the upper
lip; or the movement may be abbreviated into the mere
wrinkling of the nose. The nose is often slightly con-
tracted, so as partly to close the passage;3 and this is
commonly accompanied by a slight snort or expiration.
All these actions are the same with those which we em-
ploy when we perceive an offensive odour, and wish to
exclude or expel it. In extreme cases, as Dr. Piderit
remarks,4 we protrude and raise both lips, or the upper
lip alone, so as to close the nostrils as by a valve, the
nose being thus turned up. We seem thus to say to the
despised person that he smells offensively,5 in nearly
the same manner as we express to him by half-closing our
eyelids, or turning away our faces, that he is not worth
looking at. It must not, however, be supposed that such
ideas actually pass through the mind when we exhibit
our contempt; but as whenever we have perceived a dis-

8 Dr. W. Ogle, in an interesting- paper on the Sense of
Smell (' Medico-Chirurgical Transactions,' vol. liii. p. 268),
shows that when we wish to smell carefully, instead of
taking- one deep nasal inspiration, we draw in the air by
a succession of rapid short sniffs. If " the nostrils be
watched during- this process, it will be seen that, so far
from dilating-, they actually contract at each sniff. The
contraction does not include the whole anterior opening,
but only the posterior portion." He then explains the
cause of this movement. When, on the other hand, we wish
to exclude any odour, the contraction, I presume, affects
only the anterior part of the nostrils.

* ' Mimik und Physiognomik,' ss. 84, 93. Gratiolet (ibid.
p. 155) takes nearly the same view with Dr. Piderit respect-
ing- the expression of contempt and disgust.

5 Scorn implies a strong- form, of contempt; and one of
the roots of the word * scorn' means, according- to Mr.
Wedgwood (Diet, of English Etymology, vol. iii. p. 125),•
ordure or dirt. A person who is scorned is treated like

256                               DISGUST.                          CHAP. XI.

agreeable odour or seen a disagreeable sight, actions of
this kind have been performed, they have become habit-
ual or fixed, and are now employed under any analogous
state of mind.

Various odd little gestures likewise indicate con-
tempt; for instance, snapping one's fingers. This, as
Mr. Tylor remarks/ " is not very intelligible as we gen-
erally see it; but when we notice that the same sign
made quite gently, as if rolling some tiny object away
between the finger and thumb, or the sign of flipping
it away with the thumb-nail and forefinger, are usual
and well-understood deaf-and-dumb gestures, denoting
anything tiny, insignificant, contemptible, it seems as
though we had exaggerated and conventionalized a per-
fectly natural action, so as to lose sight of its original
meaning. There is a curious mention of this gesture
by Strabo." Mr. Washington Matthews informs me
that, with the Dakota Indians of North America, eon-
tempt is shown not only by movements of the face, such
as those above described, but " conventionally, by the
hand being closed and held near the breast, then, as the
forearm is suddenly extended, the hand is opened and
the fingers separated from each other. If the person at
whose expense the sign is made is present, the hand is
moved towards him, and the head sometimes averted
from him." This sudden extension and opening of the
hand perhaps indicates the dropping or throwing away
a valueless object.

The term tf disgust/ in its simplest sense, means
something offensive to the taste. It is curious how read-
ily this feeling is excited by anything unusual in the
appearance, odour, or nature of our food. In Tierra del
Fuego a native touched with his finger some cold pre-

e • Early History of Mankind,' 2nd edit. 1870, p. 45.




served meat which I was eating at our bivouac, and plain-
ly showed utter disgust at its softness; whilst I felt
titter disgust at my food being touched by a naked sav-
age, though his hands did not appear dirty. A smear
of soup on a man's beard looks disgusting, though there
is of course nothing disgusting in the soup itself. I pre-
sume that this follows from the strong association in
our minds between the sight of food, however circum-
stanced, and the idea of eating it.

As the sensation of disgust primarily arises in con-
nection with the act of eating or tasting, it is natural
that its expression should consist chiefly in movements
round the mouth. But as disgust also causes annoyance,
it is generally accompanied by a frown, and often by
gestures as if to push away or to guard oneself against
the offensive object. In the two photographs (figs. 2
and 3, on Plate V.) Mr. Eejlander has simulated this
expression with some success. "With respect to the face,
moderate disgust is exhibited in various ways; by the
mouth being widely opened, as if to let an offensive
morsel drop out; by spitting; by blowing out of the pro-
truded lips; or by a sound as of clearing the throat.
Such guttural sounds are written ach or ugh ; and their
utterance is sometimes accompanied by a shudder, the
arms being pressed close to the sides and the shoulders
raised in the same manner as when horror is experienced.7
Extreme disgust is expressed by movements round the
mouth identical with those preparatory to the act of
vomiting. The mouth is opened widely, with the upper
lip strongly retracted, which wrinkles the sides of the
nose, and with the lower lip protruded and everted as
much as possible. This latter movement requires the

7 See, to this effect, Mr. Hensleigh Wedgwood's Intro-
duction to the ' Dictionary of English Etymology,' 2nd
edit. 1872, p. xxxvii.

258                                 DISG-UST.                        CHAP. XI

contraction of the muscles which draw downwards the
corners of the mouth.8

It is remarkable how readily and instantly retching
or actual vomiting is induced in some persons by the
mere idea of having partaken of any unusual food, as
of an animal which is not commonly eaten; although
there is nothing in such food to cause the stomach to
reject it. When vomiting results, as a reflex action,
from some real cause—as from too rich food, or tainted
meat, or from an emetic—it does not ensue immediately,
but generally after a considerable interval of time.
Therefore, to account for retching or vomiting being so
quickly and easily excited by a mere idea, the suspicion
arises that our progenitors must formerly have had the
power (like that possessed by ruminants and some other
animals) of voluntarily rejecting food which disagreed
with them, or which they thought would disagree with
them; and now, though this power has been lost, as far
as the will is concerned, it is called into involuntary
action, through the force of a formerly well-established
habit, whenever the mind revolts at the idea of having
partaken of any kind of food, or at anything disgusting.
This suspicion receives support from the fact, of which
I am assured by Mr. Sutton, that the monkeys in the
Zoological Gardens often vomit whilst in perfect health,
which looks as if the act were voluntary. We can see
that as man is able to communicate by language to his
children and others, the knowledge of the kinds of food
to be avoided, he would have little occasion to use the
faculty of voluntary rejection; so that this power would
tend to be lost through disuse.

8 Duchenne believes that in the eversion of the lower lip,
the corners are drawn downwards by the depressor®* (inffuli
oris. Henle (Handbuch d. Anat. cles Menschen, 1858, B. i. s.
151) concludes that this is effected by the musculus quadra-
tus rncnti.

CHAP. XI.                       DISGUST.                              259

As the sense of smell is so intimately connected with
that of taste, it is not surprising that an excessively bad
odour should excite retching or vomiting in some per-
sons, quite as readily as the thought of revolting food
does; and that, as a further consequence, a moderately
offensive odour should cause the various expressive move-
ments of disgust. The tendency to retch from a fetid
odour is immediately strengthened in a curious manner
by some degree of habit, though soon lost by longer
familiarity with the cause of offence and by voluntary re-
straint. For instance, I wished to clean the skeleton
of a bird, which had not been sufficiently macerated,
and the smell made my servant and myself (we not hav-
ing had much experience in such work) retch so vio-
lently, that we were compelled to desist. During the
previous days I had examined some other skeletons,
which smelt slightly; yet the odour did not in the least
affect me, but, subsequently for several days, whenever
I handled these same skeletons, they made me retch.

From the answers received from my correspondents
it appears that the various movements, which have now
been described as expressing contempt and disgust, pre-
vail throughout a large part of the world. Dr. Eothrock,
for instance, answers with a decided affirmative with
respect to certain wild Indian tribes of North America.
Crantz says that when a Greenlander denies anything
with contempt or horror he turns up his nose, and gives
a slight sound through it.9 Mr. Scott, has sent me a
graphic description of the face of a young Hindoo at
the sight of castor-oil, which he was compelled occa-
sionally to take. Mr. Scott has also seen the same ex-
pression on the faces of high-caste natives who have

9 As quoted by Tylor, ' Primitive Culture/ 1871, vol. i.
p. 169.




[ l

approached close to some defiling object. Mr. Bridges
says that the Fuegians " express contempt by shooting
out the lips and hissing through them, and by turning
up the nose/5 The tendency either to snort through
the nose, or to make a noise expressed by ugh or ach, is
noticed by several of my correspondents.

Spitting seems an almost universal sign of contempt
or disgust; and spitting obviously represents the rejec-
tion of anything offensive from the mouth. Shakspeare
makes the Duke of Norfolk say, " I spit at him—call
him a slanderous coward and a villain." So, again, Fal-
staff says, " Tell thee what, Hal,—if I tell thee a lie,
spit in my face." Leichhardt remarks that the Aus-
tralians " interrupted their speeches by spitting, and ut-
tering a noise like pooh I pooh! apparently expressive of
their disgust." And Captain Burton speaks of certain
negroes " spitting with disgust upon the ground." 10
Captain Speedy informs me that this is likewise the case
with the. Abyssinians. Mr. Geach says that with the
Malays of Malacca the expression of disgust " answers
to spitting from the mouth;" and with the Fuegians,
according to Mr. Bridges " to spit at one is the highest
mark of contempt."

I never saw disgust more plainly expressed than on
the face of one of my infants at the age of five months,
when, for the first time, some cold water, and again a
month afterwards, when a piece of ripe cherry was piit
into his mouth. This was shown by the lips and whole
mouth" assuming a shape which allowed the contents to
run or fall quickly out; the tongue being likewise pro-
truded. These movements were accompanied by a little
shudder. It was all the more comical, as I doubt whether

10 Both these  quotations are  given by Mr.  H. Wedg-
wood, * On the Origin of Language,' 1866, p. 75.





the child felt real disgust—the eyes and forehead express-
ing much surprise and consideration. The protrusion
of the tongue in letting a nasty object fall out of the
mouth, may explain how it is that lolling out the tongue
universally serves as a sign of contempt and hatred.11

"We have now seen that scorn, disdain, contempt, and
disgust are expressed in many different ways, by move-
ments of the features, and by various gestures; and that
these are the same throughout the world. They all con-
sist of actions representing the rejection or exclusion of
some real object which we dislike or abhor, but which
does not excite in us certain other strong emotions, such
as rage or terror; and through the force of habit and as-
sociation similar actions are performed, whenever any
analogous sensation arises in our minds.

Jealousy', Envy, Avarice, Revenge, Suspicion, Deceit,
Slyness, Guilt, Vanity, Conceit, Ambition, Pride, Hu-
mility, &c.—It is doubtful whether the greater number
of the above complex states of mind are revealed by any
fixed expression, sufficiently distinct to be described or
delineated. When Shakspeare speaks of Envy as lean-
faced, or Hack, or pale, and Jealousy as " the green-eyed
monster;" and when Spenser describes Suspicion as
"foul, ill-favoured, and grim," they must have felt this
difficulty. Nevertheless, the above feelings—at least
many of them—can be detected by the eye; for instance,
conceit; but we are often guided in a much greater de-
gree than we suppose by our previous knowledge of the
persons or circumstances.

My correspondents almost unanimously answer in
the affirmative to my query, whether the expression of

11 Tins is stated to be the case by Mr. Tyler (Early Hist,
of Mankind, 2nd edit. 1870, p. 52); and he adds, " it is not
clear why this should be so."

262                               PRIDE.                        CHAP. XL

guilt and deceit can be recognized amongst the various
races of man; and I have confidence in their answers, as
they generally deny that jealousy can thus be recognized.
In the cases in which details are given, the eyes are
almost always referred to. The guilty man is said to
avoid looking at his accuser, or to give him stolen looks.
The eyes are said " to be turned askant," or " to waver
from side to side," or " the eyelids to be lowered and
partly closed." This latter remark is made by Mr.
Hagenauer with respect to the Australians, and by Gaika
t                         with respect to the Kafirs. The restless movements of

the eyes apparently follow, as will be explained when
we treat of blushing, from the guilty man not enduring
to meet the gaze of his accuser. I may add, that I have
observed a guilty expression, without a shade of fear, in
some of my own children at a very early age. In one in-

stance the expression was unmistakably clear in a child                    |

two years and seven months old, and led to the detec-                    f!

tion of his little crime.   It was shown, as I record in my                    |

notes made at the time, by an unnatural brightness in                    »1

the eyes, and by an odd, affected manner, impossible to

Slyness is also, I believe, exhibited chiefly by move-
ments about the eyes; for these are less under the con-
Hi |                         trol of the will, owing to the force of long-continued
*                            habit, than are the movements of the body.   Mr. Her-
,(                           bert Spencer remarks,12 "When there is a desire to see
1                         something on one side of the visual field without being
1                         supposed to see it, the tendency is to check the con-
l,                         spicuous movement of the head, and to make the re-
i |                         quired adjustment entirely with the eyes; which are,
I l                          therefore, drawn very much to one side.   Hence, when
I ji                         the eyes are turned to one side, while the face is not

6 Principles of Psychology,' 2nd edit. 1872, p. 552.

CHAP. XL                   HELPLESSNESS:                          263

turned to the same side, we get the natural language of
what is called slyness."

Of all the ahove-named complex emotions, Pride., per-
haps,, is the most plainly expressed. A proud man ex-
hibits his sense of superiority over others by holding
his head and body erect. He is haughty (haut), or high,
and makes himself appear as large as possible; so 'that
metaphorically he is said to be swollen or puffed up with
pride. A peacock or a turkey-cock strutting about with
puffed-up feathers, is sometimes said to be an emblem
of pride.13 The arrogant man looks down on others,,
and with lowered eyelids hardly condescends to see them;
or he may show his contempt by slight movements/ such
as those before described, about the nostrils or lips.
Hence the muscle which everts the lower lip has been
called the musculus superbus. In some photographs of
patients affected by a monomania of pride, sent me by
Dr. Crichton Browne., the head and body were held erect,
and the mouth firmly closed. This latter action, ex-
pressive of decision., follows, I presume., from the proud
man feeling perfect self-confidence in himself. The
whole expression of pride stands in direct antithesis to
that of humility; so that nothing need here be said of
the latter state of mind.

Helplessness, Impotence: Shrugging the shoulders.
— When a man wishes to show that he cannot do some-
thing, or prevent something being done, he often raises
with a quick movement both shoulders. At the same
time, if the whole gesture is completed, he bencls his
elbows closely inwards, raises his open hands, turning

18 Gratiolet (De la Phys. p. 351) makes this remark, and
has some g-ood observations on the expression of pride.
See Sir 0. Bell (' Anatomy of Expression,' p. Ill) on the
action of the musculus supcrbus.

264                          HELPLESSNESS:                   CHAP. XL

them outwards, with the fingers separated. The head
is often thrown a little on one side; the eyebrows are
elevated,, and this causes wrinkles across the forehead.
The mouth is generally opened. I may mention; in order
to show how unconsciously the features are thus acted
on, that though I had often intentionally shrugged my
shoulders to observe how my arms were placed, I was
not at all aware that my eyebrows were raised and mouth
opened, until I looked at myself in a glass; and since
then I have noticed the same movements in the faces
of others. In the accompanying Plate VI., figs. 3 and
4, Mr. Rejlander has successfully acted the gesture of
shrugging the shoulders.

Englishmen are much less demonstrative than the
men of most other European nations, and they shrug
their shoulders far less frequently and energetically than
Frenchmen or Italians do. The gesture varies in all
degrees from the complex movement, just described, to
only a momentary and scarcely perceptible raising of
both shoulders; or, as I have noticed in a lady sitting in
an arm-chair, to the mere turning slightly outwards of
the open hands with separated fingers. I have never
seen very young English children shrug their shoulders,
but the following case was observed with care by a
medical professor and excellent observer, and has been
communicated to me by him. The father of this gen-
tleman was a Parisian, and his mother a Scotch lady.
His wife is of British extraction on both sides, and my
informant does not believe that she ever shrugged her
shoulders in her life. His children have been reared in
England, and the nursemaid is a thorough English-
woman, who has never been seen to shrug her shoulders.
Now, his eldest daughter was observed to shrug her
shoulders at the age of between sixteen and eighteen
months; her mother exclaiming at the time, " Look at

CHAP. XL       SHRUGGING THE SHOULDERS.             265

the little French girl shrugging her shoulders! " At
first she often acted thus, sometimes throwing her head
a little backwards and on one side, but,she did not, as
far as was observed, move her elbows and hands in the
usual manner. The habit gradually wore away, and
now, when she is a little over four years old, she is never
seen to act thus. The father is told that he sometimes
shrugs his shoulders, especially when arguing with any
one; but it is extremely improbable that his daughter
should have imitated him at so early an age; for, as he
remarks, she could not possibly have often seen this
gesture in him. Moreover, if the habit had been ac-
quired through imitation, it is not probable that it would
so soon have been spontaneously discontinued by this
child, and, as we shall immediately see, by a second child,
though the father still lived with his family. This little
girl, it may be added, resembles her Parisian grand-
father in countenance to an almost absurd degree. She
also presents another and very curious resemblance to
him, namely, by practising a singular trick. When she
impatiently wants something, she holds out her little
hand, and rapidly rubs the thumb against the index
and middle finger: now this same trick was frequently
performed under the same circumstances by her grand-

This gentleman's second daughter also shrugged her
shoulders before the age of eighteen months, and after-
wards discontinued the habit. It is of course possible
that she may have imitated her elder sister; but she
continued it after her sister had lost the habit. She at
first resembled her Parisian grandfather in a less degree
than did her sister at the same age, but now in a greater
degree. She likewise practises to the present time the
peculiar habit of rubbing together, when impatient, her
thumb and two of her fore-fingers.



266                          HELPLESSNESS:      '             CHAP. XI

In this latter case we have a good instance, like those
given in a former chapter, of the inheritance of a trick
or gesture; for no one, I presume, will attribute to mere
coincidence so peculiar a habit as this, which was com-
mon to the grandfather and his two grandchildren who
had never seen him.

Considering all the circumstances with reference to
these children shrugging their shoulders, it can hardly
be doubted that they have inherited the habit from their
French progenitors, although they have only one quar-
ter French blood in their veins, and although their
grandfather did not often shrug his shoulders. There
is nothing very unusual, though the fact is interesting,
in these children having gained by inheritance a habit
during early youth, and then discontinuing it; for it is
of frequent occurrence with many kinds of animals that
certain characters are retained for a period by the young,
and are then lost.

As it appeared to me at one time improbable in a
high degree that so complex a gesture as shrugging the
shoulders, together with the accompanying movements,
should be innate, I was anxious to ascertain whether
the blind and deaf Laura Bridgman, who could not have
learnt the habit by imitation, practised it. And I have
heard, through Dr. Innes, from a lady who has lately
had charge of her, that she does shrug her shoulders, turn
in her elbows, and raise her eyebrows in the same .manner
as other people, and under the same circumstances. I
was also anxious to learn whether this gesture was prac-
tised by the various races of man, especially by those
who never have had much intercourse with Europeans.
We shall see that they act in this manner; but it appears
that the gesture is sometimes confined to merely raising
or shrugging the shoulders, wrEhout the other move-

CHAP. XL      SH&UGQING- THE SHOULDERS;             267

Mr. Scott has frequently seen this gesture in the                                f

Bengalees and Dhangars (the latter constituting a dis-                                I-

tinct race) who are employed in the Botanic Garden at                                '•

Calcutta; when, for instance, they have declared that                                 '

they could not do some work, such as lifting a heavy                                 !

weight. He ordered a Bengalee to climb a lofty tree;
but the man, with a shrug of his shoulders and a lat-                                 |

eral shake of his head, said he could not.    Mr. Scott                                 !t

knowing that the man was lazy, thought he could.,                                  \'

and insisted  on  his trying.    His  face  now became                                 j|

pale, his arms dropped to his sides, his mouth and                                 Vi

eyes were widely opened, and again surveying the tree.,                                 ']

he looked askant at Mr.  Scott, shrugged his shoul-                                   >!;

ders, inverted  his  elbows,  extended his open hands,                                  [\

and with a few quick lateral shakes of the head de-
clared his inability. Mr. H. Erskine has likewise seen                                 'j
the natives of India shrugging their shoulders; but                                 j
he has never seen the elbows turned so much in-                                  j
wards as with us; and whilst shrugging their shoxilders \
they sometimes lay their uncrossed hands on their ;
breasts. i

"With the wild Malays of the interior of Malacca, and

with the Bugis (true Malays, though speaking a different                                 \

language), Mr. Qeach has often seen this gesture.    I                            J^ |,

presume that it is complete, as, in answer to my query                                 j?

descriptive of the movements of the shoulders, arms,,                                  ij

hands, and face, Mr. Geach remarks, "it is performed                                  |;

in a beautiful style."   I have lost an extract from a                                  I

scientific voyage, in which shrugging the shoulders by
some natives (Micronesians) of the Caroline Archipelago
in the Pacific Ocean, was well described. Capt. Speedy
informs me that the Abyssinians shrug their shoulders,
-but enters into no details. Mrs. Asa'Gray saw an Arab
dragoman in Alexandria acting exactly as described in
my query, when an old gentleman, on whom he attended,                                   \

268                            HELPLESSNESS:                    CHAP. XI.

would not go in the proper direction which had heen
pointed out to him.

Mr. Washington Matthews says, in reference to the
wild Indian tribes of the western parts of the United
States, " I have on a few occasions detected men using
a slight apologetic shrug, but the rest of the demonstra-
tion which you describe I have not witnessed." Fritz
Miiller informs me that he has seen the negroes in Brazil
shrugging their shoulders; but it is of course possible
that they may have learnt to do so by imitating the Por-
tuguese. Mrs. Barber has never seen this gesture with
the Kafirs of South Africa; and Gaika, judging from his
answer, did not even understand what was meant by
my description. Mr. Swinhoe is also doubtful about
the Chinese; but he has seen them, under the circum-
stances which would make us shrug our shoulders, press
their right elbow against their side, raise' their eye-
brows, lift up their hand with the palm directed to-
wards the person addressed, and shake it from right to
left. Lastly, with respect to the Australians, four of
my informants answer by a simple negative, and one
by a simple affirmative. Mr. Bunnett, who has had
excellent opportunities for observation on the borders
of the Colony of Victory, also answers by a " yes,"
adding that the gesture is performed "in a more sub-
dued and less demonstrative manner than is the case
with civilized nations." This circumstance may ac-
count for its not having been noticed by four of my in-

These statements, relating to Europeans, Hindoos,
the hill-tribes of India, Malays, Micronesians, Abyssin-
ians, Arabs, Negroes, Indians of North America, and ap-
parently to the Australians—many of these natives hav-
ing had scarcely any intercourse with Europeans—are
sufficient to show that shrugging the shoulders., accom-

CHAP. XI.      SHRUGGING THE SHOULDERS.             269

panied in some cases by the other proper movements, is
a gesture natural to mankind.

This gesture implies an unintentional or unavoidable
action on our own part, or one that we cannot perform;
or an action performed by another person which we
!                  cannot prevent.   It accompanies such speeches as, " It

f                 was not my fault;" " It is impossible for me to grant

j                  this favour; " cc He must follow his own course, I can-

i                  not stop him."    Shrugging the shoulders likewise ex-

presses patience, or the absence of any intention to re-
l                  sist.   Hence the muscles which raise the shoulders are

)                  sometimes called, as I have been informed by an artist,

\                  " the patience muscles."   Shylock the Jew, says,

" Sig-nor Antonio, many a time and oft
In the Rialto have yo'u rated me
About my monies and usances;
Still have I borne it with a patient shrug."

Merchant of Venice, act i. sc. 3.

Sir C. Bell has given 14 a life-like figure of a man,
y                  who is shrinking back from some terrible danger, and is

;                  on the point of screaming out in abject terror.   He is

f                 represented with his shoulders lifted up almost to his

i                  ears; and this at once declares that there is no thought

'                  of resistance.

j                       As shrugging the shoulders generally implies "I

1                  cannot do this or that," so by a slight change, it some-

times implies " I won't do it."   The movement then ex-
\                  presses a dogged determination not to act.    Olmsted

describes15 an Indian in Texas as giving a great shrug
^                  to his shoulders, when he was informed that a party of

men were Germans and not Americans, thus expressing
that he would have nothing to do with them.   Sulky and

14 * Anatomy of Expression,' p. 166.
18 * Journey through Texas,' p. 352.

270"                           HELPLESSNESS:                   CHAP. XI.

obstinate children may be seen with both their shoulders                     ^

raised high up; "but this moTement is not associated with                       f

the others which generally accompany a true shrug.   An

excellent observer16 in describing a young man who was                       ;

determined not to yield to his father's desire, says, " He

thrust his hands deep down into his pockets, and set

up his shoulders to his ears, which was a good warning                      y

that, come right or wrong, this rock should fly from its

firm base as soon as Jack would; and that any remon-                       1

strance on the subject was purely futile."   As soon as                       j

the son got his own way, he " put Ms shoulders into their                       j

natural position."    •

Resignation is sometimes shown by the open hands                       j

being placed, one over the other., on the lower part of
the body. I should not have thought this little gesture
worth even a passing notice, had not Dr. W. Ogle re-
marked to me that he had two or three times observed
it in patients who were preparing for operations under
chloroform. They exhibited no great fear> but seemed
to declare by this posture of their hands, that they had
made up their minds, and were resigned to the inevi-                        '

table.                                                                                                4

We may now inquire why men in all parts of the
world when they feel,,—whether or not they wish to show
this feeling.,—that they cannot or will not do something,
or will not resist something if done by another, shrug
their shoulders, at the same time often bending in their
elbows, showing the palms of their hands with extended                       t

fingers, often throwing their heads a little on one side,*
raising their eyebrows, and opening their mouths. These
states of the mind are either simply passive, or show a
determination not to act. Rone of the above move-
ments are of the least service. The explanation lies, I

19 Mrs. Oliphant,* The Brownlows,1 vol. ii. p. 206.


CHAP. XL      SHRUGGING- THE SHOULDERS.             271

cannot doubt, in the principle of unconscious antithesis.
This principle here seems to come into play as clearly as
in the case of a dog, who, when feeling savage,, puts him-
self in the proper attitude for attacking and for making
himself appear terrible to his enemy; but as soon as he
feels affectionate, throws his whole body into a directly
opposite attitude, though this is of no direct use to him.

Let it be observed how an indignant man, who re-
sents, and will not submit to some injury, holds his head
erect, squares his shoulders, and expands his chest. He
often clenches his fists, and puts one or both arms in the                           i

proper position for attack or defence, with the muscles
of his limbs rigid. He frowns,—that is, he contracts
and lowers his brows,—and, being determined, closes
his mouth. The actions and attitude of a helpless man
are, in every one of these respects, exactly the reverse.
In Plate VI. we may imagine one of the figures on the
left side to have just said, " What do you mean by in-
sulting me?" and one of the figures on the right side
to answer, " I really could not help it." The helpless
man unconsciously contracts the muscles of his forehead
which are antagonistic to those that cause a frown, and
thus raises his eyebrows; at the same time he relaxes
the muscles about the mouth, so that the lower jaw
drops. The antithesis is complete in every detail, not
only in the movements of the features, but in the position
of the limbs and in the attitude of the whole body, as
may be seen in the accompanying plate. As the helpless
or apologetic man often wishes to show his state of mind,
he then acts in a conspicuous or demonstrative manner.

In accordance with the fact that squaring the elbows
and clenching the fists are gestures by no means uni-
versal with the men of all races, when they feel indig-
nant and are prepared to attack their enemy, so it ap-
pears that a helpless or apologetic frame of mind is ex-






pressed in many parts of the world "by merely shrugging
the shoulders, without turning inwards the elbows and
opening the hands. The man or child who is obstinate,
or one who is resigned to some great misfortune, has
in neither ease any idea of resistance by active means;
and he expresses this state of mind, by simply keeping
his shoulders raised; or lie may possibly fold his arms
across his breast.

/Signs of affirmation or approval, and of negation or
disapproval: nodding and shaking the head.—I was
curicms to ascertain how far the common signs used by
us in affirmation and negation were general throughout
the world. These signs are indeed to a certain extent
expressive of our feelings, as we give a vertical nod of
approval with a smile to our children, when we approve
of their conduct; and shake our heads laterally with a
frown, when we disapprove. "With infants, the first act
of denial consists in refusing food; and I repeatedly
noticed with rny own infants, that they did so by with-
drawing their heads laterally from the "breast, or from
anything offered them in a spoon. In accepting food
and taking it into their mouths, they incline their heads
forwards. Since making these observations I have been
informed that the same idea had occurred to Charma.17
It deserves notice that in accepting or taking food, there
is only a single movement forward, and a single nod im-
plies an affirmation. On the other hand, in refusing
food, especially if it be pressed on them, children fre-
quently move their heads several times from side to side.,
as we do in shaking our heads in negation. Moreover,,
in the ease of refusal, the head is not rarely thrown back-
wards, or the mouth is closed, so that these movements

1T c Essai sur le Langage,' 2nd edit. 1846. I am much in-
debted to Miss Wedgwood for having given me this in-
formation, with an extract from the work.

CHAP. XL                   AND NEGATION.                           373

might likewise come to serve as signs of negation. 'Mr.
Wedgwood remarks on this subject/8 that " when the
voice is exerted with closed teeth or lips, it produces the
sound of the letter n or m. Hence we may account for
the xise of the particle ne to signify negation^ and possi-
bly also of the Greek ^ in the same sense."

That these signs are innate or instinctive, at least
with Anglo-Saxons, is rendered highly probable by the
blind and deaf Laura Bridgman " constantly accom-
panying her yes with the common affirmative nod, and
her no with our negative shake of the head." Had not
Mr. Lieber stated to the contrary,10 I should have imag-
ined that these gestures might have been acquired or
learnt by her, considering her wonderful sense of touch
and appreciation of the movements of others. With
microcephaloxis idiots, who are so degraded that they
never learn to speak, one of them is described by Vogt,20
as answering, when asked whether he wished for more
food or drink, by inclining or shaking his head. Schmalz,
in his remarkable dissertation on the edxication of the
deaf and dumb., as well as of children raised only one
degree above idiotcy, assumes that they can always both
make and understand the common signs of affirmation
and negation.21

Nevertheless if we look to the various races of man,
these signs are not so universally employed as I should
have expected; yet they seem too general to be ranked
as altogether conventional or artificial. My informants
assert that both signs are used by the Malays, by the
natives of Oeylon, the Chinese, the negroes of the Gxxinea

18 * On the Origin of Language,' 1866, p. 91.
10 'On the Vocal Sounds of L. Bridgman; ' Smithsonian
Contributions, 1851, vol. ii. p. 1.1.

20  * M&moire sur les Mierocephales,' 1867, p. 27.

21  Quoted by Tylor, * Early History, of Mankind,' 2nd
edit. 1870, p. 38.

274                  SIGNS OF AFFIRMATION            CHAP. XI.


coast, and, according to Gaika, by the Kafirs of South
Africa, though with these latter people Mrs. Barber has
never seen a lateral shake used as a negative. With re-
spect to the Australians, seven observers agree that a nod
is given in affirmation; five agree about a lateral shake
in negation, accompanied or not by some word; but
Mr. Dyson Lacy has never seen this latter sign in Queens-
land, and Mr. Buhner says that in Gipps' Land a nega-
tive is expressed by throwing the head a little backwards
and putting out thrtongue. At the northern extremity
of the continent, near Torres Straits, the natives when
uttering a negative " don't shake the head with it, but
holding up the right hand, shake it by turning it half
round and back again two or three times." 22 The throw-
ing back of the head with a cluck of the tongue is said
to be used as a negative by the modern Greeks and Turks,
the latter people expressing yes by a movement like that
made by us when we shake our heads.23 The Abys-
sinians, as I am informed by Captain Speedy, express a
negative by jerking the head to the right shoulder, to-
• gether with a slight cluck, the mouth being closed; an
affirmation is expressed by the head being thrown back-
wards and the eyebrows raised for an instant. The
Tagals of Luzon, in the Philippine Archipelago, as I hear
from Dr. Adolf Meyer, when they say " yes," also throw
the head backwards. According to the Rajah Brooke,
the Dyaks of Borneo express an affirmation by raising
the eyebrows, and a negation by slightly contracting
them, together with a peculiar look from the eyes. With.
the Arabs on the Nile, Professor and Mrs. Asa Gray
concluded that nodding in affirmation was rare, whilst.

22  Mr. J. B. Jukes, ' Letters and Extracts,' &c. 1871, p.

23  F. Lieber, ' On the Vocal Sounds,' &c. p. 11.    Tylor,
ibid. p. 53.

CHAP. XL                  AND NEGATION.                          275

shaking the head in negation was never used, and was
not even understood by them. With the Esquimaux24
a nod means yes and a wink no. The New Zealanders
" elevate the head and chin in place of nodding acquies-
cence." 25

With the Hindoos Mr. BL Erskine concludes from
inquiries made from experienced Europeans, and from
native gentlemen, that the signs of affirmation and ne-
gation vary—a nod and a lateral shake being sometimes
used as we do; but a negative is more commonly ex-
pressed by the head being thrown suddenly backwards
and a little to one side, with a cluck of the tongue. What
the meaning may be of this cluck of the tongue, which
has been observed with various people, I cannot imagine.
A native gentleman stated that affirmation is frequently
shown by the head being thrown to the left. I 'asked
Mr. Scott to attend particularly to this point, and, after
repeated observations, he believes that a vertical nod
is not commonly used by the natives in affirmation, but
that the head is first thrown backwards either to the
left or right, and then jerked obliquely forwards only
once. This movement would perhaps have been de-
scribed by a less careful observer as a lateral shake. He
also states that in negation the head is usually held
nearly upright, and shaken several times.

. Mr. Bridges informs me that the Fuegians nod their
heads vertically in affirmation, and shake them laterally
in denial. With the wild Indians of North America,
according to Mr. Washington Matthews, nodding and
shaking the head have been learnt from Europeans, and
are not naturally employed. They express affirmation
"•by describing with the hand (all the fingers except the

34 Dr. King, Edinburgh Phil. Journal, 1845, p. 313.
25 Tylor, * Early History of Mankind,' 2nd edit. 1870,
p. 53.


index being flexed) a curve downwards and outwards
from the body, whilst negation is expressed by moving
the open hand outwards., with the palm facing inwards."
Other observers state that the sign of affirmation with
these Indians is the forefinger being raised, and then
lowered and pointed to the ground,, or the hand is waved
straight forward from the face; and that the sign of
negation is the finger or whole hand shaken from side
to side.26 This latter movement probably represents in
all cases the lateral shaking of the head. The Italians
are said in like manner to move the lifted finger from
right to left in negation, as indeed we English some-
times do.

On the whole we find considerable diversity in the
signs of affirmation and negation in the different races
of man. With respect to negation, if we admit that the
shaking of the finger or hand from side to side is sym-
bolic of the lateral movement of the head; and if we
admit that the sudden backward movement of the head
represents one of the actions often practised by young
children in refusing food, then there is much uniformity
throughout the world in the signs of negation, and we
can see how they originated. The most marked excep-
tions are presented by the Arabs, Esquimaux, some Aus-
tralian tribes, and Dyaks. With the latter a frown is
the sign of negation, and with us frowning often accom-
panies a lateral shake of the head.

With respect to nodding in affirmation, the excep-
tions are rather more numerous, namely with some of                       f
the Hindoos, with the Turks, Abyssinians, Dyaks, |
Tagals, and New Zealanders. The eyebrows are some- I
times raised in affirmation, and as a person in bending I

28 I/ubbock,  * The Origin of Civilization,'  1870,  p.  277.                           I

Tylor, ibid. p. 38.   Lieber (ibid. p. 11) remarks on the neg-a-                           1

tive of the Italians.                                                            ,                                7




his head forwards and downwards naturally looks up to
the person whom he addresses, he will be apt to raise his
eyebrows,, and this sign may thus have arisen as an abbre-
viation. So again with the New Zealanders, the lifting
up the chin and head in affirmation may perhaps repre-
sent in an abbreviated form the upward movement of the
head after it has been nodded forwards and downwards.

278                                 SURPRISE.                         .CHAP. XL



Surprise, astonishment—Elevation of the eyebrows—Open-
ing the mouth—Protrusion oi the lips—Gestures accom-
panying surprise—Admiration—Fear—Terror—Erection
of the hair—Contraction of the platysma muscle—Dila-
tation of the pupils—Horror—Conclusion.

ATTENTION., if sudden and close, graduates into sur-
prise; and this into astonishment; and this into stupe-
fied amazement. The latter frame of mind is closely
akin to terror. Attention is shown by the eyebrows being
slightly raised; and as this state increases into surprise,
they are raised to a much greater extent, with the eyes
and mouth widely open. The raising of the eyebrows
is necessary in order that the eyes should be opened
quickly and widely; and this movement produces trans-
verse wrinkles across the forehead. The degree to which
the eyes and mouth are opened corresponds with the de-
gree of surprise felt; but these movements must be co-
ordinated; for a widely opened mouth with eyebrows
only slightly raised results in a meaningless grimace, as
Dr. Duchenne has shown in one of his photographs.1
On the other hand, a person may often be seen to pre-
tend surprise by merely raising his eyebrows.

Dr. Duchenne has given a photograph of an old man

1 ' Mecanisme de la Physionomie,' Album, 1862, p. 42.

CHAP. XII.               ,      SURPRISE.                            2Y9

with his eyebrows well elevated and arched by the gal-
vanization of the frontal muscle; and with his mouth
voluntarily opened. This figure expresses surprise with
much truth. I showed it to twenty-four persons without
a word of explanation, and one alone did not at all under-
stand what was intended. A second person answered
terror, which is not far wrong; some of the others, how-
ever, added to the words surprise or astonishment, the
epithets horrified, woful, painful, or disgusted. •

The eyes and mouth being widely open is an expres-
sion universally recognized as one of surprise or aston-
ishment. Thus Shakespeare says, " I saw a smith stand
with open mouth swallowing a tailor's news." (' King
John/ act iv. scene ii.) And again, " They seemed al-
most, with staring on one another, to tear the cases of
their eyes; there was speech in the dumbness, language
in their very gesture; they looked us they had heard of
a world destroyed." (' Winter's Tale/ act v. scene ii.)

My informants answer with remarkable uniformity to
the same effect, with respect to the various races of man;
the above movements of the features being often accom-
panied by certain gestures and sounds, presently to be
described. Twelve observers in different parts of Aus-
tralia agree on this head. Mr. Winwood Eeade has ob-
served this expression with the negroes on the Guinea
coast. The chief Gaika and others answer yes to my
query with respect to the Kafirs of South Africa; and
so do others emphatically with reference to the Abys-
sinians, Ceylonese, Chinese, Fuegians, various tribes of
North America, and KTew Zealanders. With the latter,
Mr. Stack states that the expression is more plainly
shown by certain individuals than by others, though all
endeavour as much as possible to conceal their feelings.
The Dyaks of Borneo are said by the Rajah Brooke to
open their eyes widely, when astonished, often swinging

280                            ASTONISHMENT.                  CHAP. XII.

their heads to and fro, and beating their "breasts. Mr.
Scott informs me that the workmen in the Botanic Gar-
dens at Calcutta are strictly ordered not to smoke; but
they often disobey this order, and when suddenly sur-
prised in the act, they first open their eyes and mouths
widely. They then often slightly shrug their shoulders,
as they perceive that discovery is inevitable, or frown
and stamp on the ground from vexation. Soon they
recover from their surprise, and abject fear is exhibited
by the relaxation of all their muscles; their heads seem
to sink between their shoulders; their fallen eyes wan-
der to and fro; and they supplicate forgiveness.

The well-known Australian explorer, Mr. Stuart, has
given 2 a striking account of stupefied amazement to-
gether with terror in a native who had never before seen
a man on horseback. Mr. Stuart approached unseen and
called to him from a little distance. " He turned round
and saw me. What he imagined I was I do not know;
but a finer picture of fear and astonishment I never saw.
He stood incapable of moving a limb, riveted to the spot,
mouth open and eyes staring. ... He remained mo-
tionless until our black got within a few yards of him,
when suddenly throwing down his waddies, he jumped
into a mulga bush as high as he could get." He could
not speak, and answered not a word to the inquiries made
by the black, but, trembling from head to foot, " waved
with his hand for us to be off."

That the eyebrows are raised by an innate or instinc-
tive impulse may be inferred from the fact that Laura
Bridgman invariably acts thus when astonished, as I
have been assured by the lady who has lately had charge
of her. As surprise is excited by something unexpected
or unknown, we naturally desire, when startled, to per-

2 ' The Polyglot News Letter,' Melbourne, Dec. 1858, p. 2.

CHAP. XIL                 ASTONISHMENT.                         281

ceive the cause as quickly as possible; and we consequent-
ly open our eyes fully, so that the field of vision may be
increased, and the eyeballs moved easily in any direc-
tion. But this hardly accounts for the eyebrows being
so greatly raised as is the case, and for the wild staring
of the open eyes. The explanation lies, I believe, in the
impossibility of opening the eyes with great rapidity by
merely raising the upper lids. To effect this the eye-
brows must be lifted energetically. Any one who will
try to open his eyes as quickly as possible before a mirror
will find that he acts thus; and the energetic lifting up
of the eyebrows opens the eyes so widely that they stare,
the white being exposed all round the iris. Moreover,
the elevation of the eyebrows is an advantage in looking
upwards; for as long as they are lowered they impede
our vision in this direction. Sir C. Bell gives s a curious
little proof of the part which the eyebrows play in open-
ing the eyelids. In a stupidly drunken man all the mus-
cles are relaxed, and the eyelids consequently droop, in
the same manner as when we are falling asleep. To coun-
teract this tendency the drunkard raises his eyebrows;
and this gives to him a puzzled, foolish look, as is well
represented in one of Hogarth's drawings. The habit of
raising the eyebrows having once been gained in order
to see as quickly as possible all around us, the movement
would follow from the force of association whenever
astonishment was felt from any cause, even from a sud-
den sound or an idea.

"With adult persons, when the eyebrows are raised,
the whole forehead becomes much wrinkled in trans-
verse lines; but with children this occurs only to a
slight degree. The wrinkles run in lines concentric with
each eyebrow, and are partially confluent in the middle.

3 * The Anatomy of Expression,' p. 106.

282                         ASTONISHMENT.                 CHAP. XII.

They are highly characteristic of the expression of sur-
prise or astonishment. Each eyebrow, when raised, be-
comes also, as Duchenne remarks/ more arched than it
was before.

The cause of the mouth being opened when astonish-
ment is felt, is a much more complex affair; and several
causes apparently concur in leading to this movement.
It has often been supposed ° that the sense of hearing
is thus rendered more acute; but I have watched per-
sons listening intently to a slight noise, the nature and
source of which they knew perfectly, and they did not
open their mouths. Therefore I at one time imagined
that the open mouth might aid in distinguishing the
direction whence a sound proceeded, by giving another
channel for its entrance into the ear through the eu-
stachian tube, But Dr. W. Ogle 6 has been so land as to
search the best recent authorities on the functions of the
eustachian tube, and he informs me that it is almost
conclusively proved that it remains closed except during
the act of deglutition; and that in persons in whom the
tube remains abnormally open, the sense of hearing, as
far as external sounds are concerned, is by no means
improved; on the contrary, it is impaired by the respira-
tory sounds being rendered more distinct. If a watch
be placed within the mouth, biit not allowed to touch
the sides, the ticking is heard much less plainly than
when held outside. In persons in whom from disease
or a cold the eustachian tube is permanently or tempo-
rarily closed, the sense of hearing is injured; but this may

* * Mecanisme cle la Physionomie,' Album, p. 6.

8 See, for instance, Dr. Piderit (' Mimik und Physiog1-
nomik,' s. 88), who has a good discussion on the expression
of surprise.

6 Dr. Murie has also given me information leading to
the same conclusion, derived in part from comparative

CHAP. XII.                  ASTONISHMENT.                         $83

"be accounted for by mucus accumulating within the tube,
and the consequent exclusion of air. We may therefore
infer that the mouth is not kept open under the sense
of astonishment for the sake of hearing sounds more
distinctly; notwithstanding that most deaf people keep
their mouths open.

Every sudden emotion, including astonishment,
quickens the action of the heart, and with it the respira-
tion. Xow we can "breathe, as Gratiolet remarks 7 and as
appears to me to be the case, much more quietly through
the open mouth than through the nostrils. Therefore,
when we wish to listen Intently to any sound, we either
stop breathing, or breathe as quietly as possible, by open-
ing our mouths,, at the same time keeping our bodies
motionless. One of my sons was awakened in the night
by a noise under circumstances which naturally led to
great care, and after a few minutes he perceived that his
mouth was widely open. He then became conscious that
he had opened it for the sake of breathing as quietly as
possible. Tliis view receives support from the reversed
case which occurs with dogs. A dog when panting after
exercise, or on a hot day., breathes loudly; but if his at-
tention be suddenly aroxised, he instantly pricks his ears
to listen, shuts his mouth, and breathes quietly, as he is
enabled to do, through his nostrils.

"When the attention Is concentrated for a length of
time with fixed earnestness on any object or subject, all
the organs of the body are forgotten and neglected;s
and as the nervous energy of each individual is limited
in amount, little is transmitted to any part of the system,
excepting that -which is at the time brought into ener-
getic action. Therefore many of the muscles tend to

7  ' De la Physionomie,' 1865, p. 234.

8 See, on this subject, Gratiolet, ibid. p. 254.




become relaxed, and the jaw drops from its own weight.
This will account for the dropping of the jaw and open
mouth of a man stupefied with amazement, and perhaps
when less strongly affected. I have noticed this appear-
ance, as I find recorded in my notes, in very young chil-
dren when they were only moderately surprised.

There is still another and highly effective cause, lead-
ing to the mouth being opened, whe-n we are astonished,
and more especially when we are suddenly startled. We
can draw a full and deep inspiration much more easily
through the widely open mouth than through the nos-
trils. Now when we start at any sudden sound or sight,
almost all the muscles of the body are involuntarily and
momentarily thrown into strong action, for the sake of
guarding ourselves against or jumping away from the
danger, which we habitually associate with anything un-
expected. But we always unconsciously prepare our-
selves for any great exertion, as formerly explained, by
first taking a deep and full inspiration, and we conse-
quently open our mouths. If no exertion follows, and
we still remain astonished, we cease for a time to breathe,
or breathe as quietly as possible, in order that every
sound may be distinctly heard. Or again, if our atten-
tion continues long and earnestly absorbed, all our mus-
cles become relaxed, and the jaw, which was at first sud-
denly opened, remains dropped. Thus several causes
concur towards this same movement, whenever surprise,
astonishment, or amazement is felt.

Although when thus affected, our mouths are gen-
erally opened, yet the lips are often a little protruded.
This fact reminds us of the same movement, though in
a much more strongly marked degree, in the chimpanzee
and orang when astonished. As a strong expiration nat-
urally follows the deep inspiration which accompanies
the first sense of startled surprise, and as the lips are

CHAP. XII.                  ASTONISHMENT.                           285

often protruded, the various sounds which are then com-
monly uttered can apparently be accounted for. But
sometimes a strong expiration alone is heard; thus Laura
Bridgman, when amazed, rounds and protrudes her lips,,
opens them, and breathes strongly.9 One of the com-
monest sounds is a deep Oh; and this would naturally
follow, as explained by Helmholtz, from the mouth being
moderately opened and the lips protruded. On a quiet
night some rockets were fired from the f Beagle/ in a
little creek at Tahiti, to amuse the natives; and as each
rocket was let of? there was absolute silence, but this was
invariably followed by a deep groaning Oh> resounding
all round the bay. Mr. Washington Matthews says that
the North American Indians express astonishment by a
groan; and the negroes on the "West Coast of Africa, ac-
cording to Mr. Winwood Beade, protrude their lips, and
make a sound like keigJi, heigh. If the mouth is not
much opened, whilst the lips are considerably protruded,
a blowing, hissing, or whistling noise is produced. Mr.
E. Brough Smith informs me that an Australian from
the interior was taken to the theatre to see an acrobat
rapidly turning head over heels: "he was greatly aston-
ished, and protruded his lips, making a noise with his
mouth as if blowing out a match." According to Mr.
Buhner the Australians, when surprised, utter the ex-
clamation Jkorki, " and to do this the mouth is drawn
out as if going to whistle." We Europeans often whistle
as a sign of surprise; thus, in a recent novel10 it is said,
"here the man expressed his astonishment and disap-
probation by a prolonged whistle." A Kafir girl, as Mr.
J. Mansel Weale informs me, " on hearing of the high
price of an article, raised her eyebrows and whistled just

0 Lieber, * On the Vocal Sounds of Laura Bridgman,'
Smithsonian Contributions, 1851, vol. ii. p. 7.
10 * Wenderholme,' vol. ii. p. 91.




as a European would." Mr. Wedgwood remarks that
such sounds are written down as whew, and they serve
as interjections for surprise.

According to three other observers, the Australians
often evince astonishment by a clucking noise. Euro-
peans also sometimes express gentle surprise by a little
clicking noise of nearly the same kind. We have seen
that when we are startled., the mouth is suddenly opened;
and if the tongue happens to be then pressed closely
against the palate, its sudden withdrawal will produce a
sound of this kind, which might thus come to express

Turning to gestures of the body. A surprised person
often raises his opened hands high above his head, or by
bending his arms only to the level of his face. The flat
palms are directed towards the person who causes this
feeling, and the straightened fingers are separated. This
gesture is represented by Mr. Rej lander in Plate VII.
fig. 1. In the ' Last Supper/ by Leonardo da Vinci, two
of the Apostles have their hands half uplifted, clearly
expressive of their astonishment. A trustworthy ob-
server told me that he had lately met his wife under
most unexpected circumstances: "She started,opened her
mouth and eyes very widely, and threw up both her arms
above her head." Several years ago I was surprised by
seeing several of my young children earnestly doing
something together on the ground; but the distance was
too great for me to ask what they were about. Therefore
I threw up my open hands with extended fingers above
my head; and as soon as I had done this, I became con-
scious of the action. I then waited, without saying a
word, to see if my children had understood this gesture;
and as they came running to me they cried out, " We
saw that you were astonished at us." I do not know
whether this gesture is common to the various races of

CHAP. XII.                 ASTONISHMENT.                          287

man, as I neglected to make inquiries on this head. That
it is innate or natural may be inferred from the fact that
Laura Bridgman, when amazed, " spreads her arms and
turns her hands with extended fingers upwards; " il nor
is it likely, considering that the feeling of surprise is gen-
erally a brief one, that she should have learnt this ges-
ture through her keen sense of touch.

Huschke describes 12 a somewhat different yet allied
gesture, which he says is exhibited by persons when
astonished. They hold themselves erect, with the fea-
tures as before described, but with the straightened
arms extended backwards—the stretched fingers being
separated from each other. I have never myself seen
this gesture; but Huschke is probably correct; for a
friend asked another man how he would express great
astonishment, and he at once threw himself into this

These gestures are, I believe, explicable on the prin-
ciple of antithesis. We have seen that an indignant
man holds his head erect, squares his shoulders, turns
out his elbows, often clenches his fist, frowns, and closes
his mouth; whilst the attitude of a helpless man is in
every one of these details the reverse. Now, a man in an
ordinary frame of mind, doing nothing and thinking
of nothing in particular, usually keeps his two arms sus-
pended laxly by his sides, with his hands somewhat
flexed, and the fingers near together. Therefore, to
raise the arms suddenly, either the whole arms or the
fore-arms, to open the palms fiat, and to separate the

11 Lieber, ' On the Vocal Sounds,' &c., ibid. p. 7.

12  Huschke,  ' Mimices et Physiognomices,'  18£l,  p.   18.
Gratiolet (De la Phys. p. 255) gives a figure of a man Jn this
attitude, which, however, seems to me expressive of fear
combined with astonishment.   Le Brim also refers  (Lava-
ter, vol. ix. p. 299) to the hands of an astonished man being

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.

CHAP. XII.                         FEAR.                                   289

lie has heard that this is their usual gesture on such oc-
casions. Captain Speedy informs me that the Abys-
sinians place their right hand to the forehead, with the
palm outside. Lastly, Mr. Washington Matthews states
that the conventional sign of astonishment with the wild
tribes of the western parts of the United States " is made
by placing the half-closed hand over the mouth; in
doing this, the head is often bent forwards, and words
or low groans are sometimes uttered." Catlin 14 makes
the same remark about the hand being pressed over the
mouth by the Mandans and other Indian tribes.

Admiration..—Little need be said on this head. Ad-
miration apparently consists of surprise associated with
some pleasure and a sense of approval. When vividly
felt, the eyes are opened and the eyebrows raised; the
eyes become bright, instead of remaining blank, as under
simple astonishment; and the mouth, instead of gaping
open, expands into a smile.

Fear, Terror.—The word ' fear; seems to be derived
from what is sudden and dangerous;15 and that of terror
from the trembling of the vocal organs and body. I
use the word ' terror' for extreme fear; but some writers
think it ought to be confined to cases in which the imag-
ination is more particularly concerned. Fear is often
preceded by astonishment, and is so far akin to it, that
both lead to the senses of sight and hearing being in-
stantly aroused. In both cases the eyes and mouth are
widely opened, and the eyebrows raised. The frightened

14 * North American Indians,' 3rd edit. 1842, vol. i. p. 105.

18 H. Wedgwood, Diet, of English Etymology, vol. ii.
1862, p. 35. See, also, Gratiolet (' De la Physionomie,' p.
135) on the sources of such words as * terror, horror,
rigidxis, frigidus,' <&c.

290                                   PEAK                          CHAP. XII,

man at first stands like a statue motionless and "breathless,
or crouches down as if instinctively to escape observa-

The heart beats quickly and violently, so that it palpi-
tates or knocks against the ribs; but it is very doubtful
whether it then works more efficiently than usual, so as
to send a greater supply of blood to all parts of the body;
for the skin instantly becomes pale, as during incipient
faintness. This paleness of the surface, however, is
probably in large part, or exclusively, due to the vaso-
motor centre being affected in such a manner as to cause
the contraction of the small arteries of the skin. That
the skin is much affected under the sense of great fear,
we see in the marvellous and inexplicable manner in
which perspiration immediately exudes from it. This
exudation is all the more remarkable, as the surface is
then cold, and hence the term a cold sweat; whereas,
the sudorific glands are properly excited into action
when the surface is heated. The hairs also on the skin
stand erect; and the superficial muscles shiver. In con-
nection with the disturbed action of the heart, the breath-
ing is hurried. The salivary glands act imperfectly; the
mouth becomes dry,16 and is often opened and shut. I
have also noticed that under slight fear there is a strong
tendency to yawn. One of the best-marked symptoms
is the trembling of all the muscles of the body; and this
is often first seen in the lips. Prom this cause, and from
the dryness of the mouth, the voice becomes husky or

18 Mr. Bain (' The Emotions and the Will,' 1865, p. 54)
explains in the following manner the origin of the custom
" of subjecting criminals in India to the ordeal of the
morsel of rice. The accused is made to take a mouthful
of rice, and after a little time to throw it out. If the
morsel is quite 'dry, the party is believed to be guilty,—
his own evil conscience operating to paralyse the salivating

CHAP. XII.                          FEAR.                                   291

indistinct, or may altogether fail. " Obstupui, stete-
runtque comas, et vox faucibus haesit."

Of vague fear there is a well-known and grand de-
scription in Job:—" In thoughts from the visions of the
night, when deep sleep falleth on men, fear came upon
me, and trembling, which made all my bones to shake.
Then a spirit passed before my face; the hair of my
flesh stood up. It stood still, but I could not discern
the form thereof: an image was before my eyes, there
was silence, and I heard a voice, saying, Shall mortal
man be more just than God? Shall a man be more pure
than his Maker? " (Job iv. 13.)

As fear increases into an agony of terror, we behold,
as under all violent emotions, diversified results. The
heart beats wildly, or may fail to act and faintness ensue;
there is a death-like pallor; the breathing is laboured;
the wings of the nostrils are wildly dilated; " there is
a gasping and convulsive motion of the lips, a tremor
on the hollow cheek, a gulping and catching of the
throat;"17 the uncovered and protruding eyeballs are
fixed on the object of terror; or they may roll restlessly
from side to side, line illuc volvens oculos totumque
pererrat.18 The pupils are said to be enormously dilated.
All the muscles of the body may become rigid, or may
be thrown into convulsive movements. The hands are
alternately clenched and opened, often with a twitching
movement. The arms may be protruded, as if to avert
some dreadful danger, or may be thrown wildly over the
head. The Eev. Mr. Hagenauer has seen this latter
action in a terrified Australian. In other cases there is

1T Sir C. Bell, Transactions of Royal Phil. Soc. 1822, p.
308. ' Anatomy of Expression,' p. 88 and pp. 164-169.

18 See Morean on the rolling" of the eyes, in the edit, of
1820 of Lavater, tome iv. p. 263. Also, Gratiolet, De la
Phys. p. 17.




a sudden and uncontrollable tendency to headlong flight;
and so strong is this, that the boldest soldiers may be
seized with a sudden panic.

As fear rises to an extreme pitch, the dreadful scream
of terror is heard. Great beads of sweat stand on the
skin. All the muscles of the body are relaxed. Utter
prostration soon follows, and the mental powers fail.
The intestines are affected. The sphincter muscles cease
to act, and no longer retain the contents of the body.

Dr. J. Crichton Browne has given me so striking an
account of intense fear in an insane woman, aged thirty-
five, that the description though painful ought not to
be omitted. When a paroxysm seizes her, she screams
out, " This is hell! " " There is a black woman! " «I
can't get out!"—and other such exclamations. When
thus screaming, her movements are those of alternate
tension and tremor. For one instant she clenches her
hands, holds her arms out before her in a stiff semi-
flexed position; then suddenly bends her body forwards,
sways rapidly to and fro, draws her fingers through
her hair, clutches at her neck, and tries to tear off her
clothes. The sterno-cleido-mastoid muscles (which serve
to bend the head on the chest) stand out prominently,
as if swollen, and the skin in front of them is much
wrinkled. Her hair, which is cut short at the back of
her head, and is smooth when she is calm, now stands
on end; that in front being dishevelled by the move-
ments of her hands. The countenance expresses great
mental agony. The skin is flushed over the face and
neck, down to the clavicles, and the veins of the forehead
and neck stand out like thick cords. The lower lip drops,
and is somewhat everted. The mouth is kept half open,
with the lower jaw projecting. The cheeks are hollow
and deeply furrowed in curved lines running from the
wings of the nostrils to the corners of the mouth. The


CHAP. XIL                             1TEAR.                                     293

nostrils themselves are raised and extended. The eyes
are widely opened, and beneath them the skin appears
swollen; the pupils are large. The forehead is wrinkled
transversely in many folds, and at the inner extremities
of the eyebrows it is strongly furrowed in diverging lines,
produced by the powerful and persistent contraction of
the corrugators.

Mr. Bell has also described19 an agony of terror and
of despair, which he witnessed in a murderer, whilst
carried to the place of execution in Turin. " On each
side of the car the officiating priests were seated; and
in the centre sat the criminal himself. It was impossible
to witness the condition of this unhappy wretch without
terror; and yet, as if impelled by some strange infatua-
tion, it was equally impossible not to gaze upon an ob-
ject so wild, so full of horror. He seemed about thirty-
five years of age; of large and muscular form; his coun-
tenance marked "by strong and savage features; half
naked, pale as death, agonized with terror, every limb
strained in anguish, his hands clenched convulsively,
the sweat breaking out on his bent and contracted brow,
lie kissed incessantly the figure of our Saviour, painted
on the flag which was suspended before him; but with
an agony of wildness and despair, of which nothing ever
exhibited on the stage can give the slightest conception."

I will add only one other case, illustrative of a man
•utterly prostrated by terror. An atrocious murderer of
two persons was brought into a hospital, under the mis-
taken impression that he had poisoned himself; and Dr.
W. Ogle carefully watched him the next morning, while
he was being handctiffed and taken away by the police.
His pallor was extreme, and his prostration so great that

19 * Observations on Italy,' 1825, p. 48, as quoted in ' The
Anatomy of Expression,' p. 168.




he was hardly able to dress himself. His skin perspired;
and his eyelids and head drooped so mnch that it was
impossible to catch even a glimpse of his eyes. His
lower jaw hnng down. There was no contraction of any
facial muscle, and Dr. Ogle is almost certain that the
hair did not stand on end,, for he observed it narrowly,
as it had been dyed for the sake of concealment.

With respect to fear, as exhibited by the various
races of man, my informants agree that the signs are
the same as with Europeans. They are displayed in
an exaggerated degree with the Hindoos and natives of
Ceylon. Mr. Geach has seen Malays when terrified turn
pale and shake; and Mr. Brough Smyth states that a
native Australian " being on one occasion much fright-
ened,, showed a complexion as nearly approaching to what
we call paleness, as can well be conceived in the case of a
very black man." Mr. Dyson Lacy has seen extreme
fear shown in an Australian, by a nervous twitching of
the hands, feet, and lips; and by the perspiration stand-
ing on the skin. Many savages do not repress the signs
of fear so much as Europeans; and they often tremble
greatly. With the Kafir, Gaika says, in his rather quaint
English, the shaking " of the body is much experienced,
and the eyes are widely open." With savages, the sphinc-
ter muscles are often relaxed, just as may be observed in
much frightened dogs, and as I have seen with monkeys
when terrified by being caught.

The erection of tlie hair.—Some of the signs of fear
deserve a little further consideration. Poets continually
speak of the hair standing on end; Brutus says to the
ghost of Caesar, "that mak'st my blood cold, and my
hair to stare." And Cardinal Beaufort, after the murder
of Gloucester exclaims, " Comb down his hair; look,
look, it stands upright." As I did not feel sure whether

CHAP. XII.         ERECTION OF THE HAIR.                  295

writers of fiction might not have applied to man what
they had often observed in animals, I begged for informa-
tion from Dr. Crichton Browne with respect to the in-
sane. He states in answer that he has repeatedly seen
their hair erected under the influence of sudden and ex-
treme terror. For instance, it is occasionally necessary
to inject morphia under the skin of an insane woman,
who dreads the operation extremely, though it causes
very little pain; for she believes that poison is being
introduced into her system, and that her bones will be
softened, and her flesh turned into dust. She becomes
deadly pale; her limbs are stiffened by a sort of tetanic
spasm, and her hair is partially erected on the front of
the head.

Dr. Browne further remarks that the bristling of the
hair which is so common in the insane, is not always
associated with terror. It is perhaps most frequently
seen in chronic maniacs, who rave incoherently and have
destructive impulses; but it is during their paroxysms
of violence that the bristling is most observable. The
fact of the hair becoming erect under the influence both
of rage and fear agrees perfectly with what we have seen
in the lower animals. Dr. Browne adduces several cases
in evidence. Thus with a man now in the Asylum, be-
fore the recurrence of each maniacal paroxysm, " the hair
rises up from his forehead like the mane of a Shetland
pony." He has sent me photographs of two women,
taken in the intervals between their paroxysms, and he
adds with respect to one of these women, " that the state
of her hair is a sure and convenient criterion of her men-
tal condition." I have had one of these photographs
copied, and the engraving gives, if viewed from a little
distance, a faithful representation of the original, with
the exception that the hair appears rather too coarse and
too much curled. The extraordinary condition of the




hair in the insane is due, not only to its erection,, but to
its dryness and harshness, consequent on the subcutane-
ous glands failing to act. Dr. Bucknill has said20 that a

FIG. 19.—From a photograph of an insane woman, to show the condition of
her hair.

lunatic " is a lunatic to his finger's ends;" he might have
added, and often to the extremity of each particular hair.

Dr. Browne mentions as an empirical confirmation
of the relation which exists in the insane between the
state of their hair and minds, that the wife of a medical
man, who has charge of a lady suffering from acute
melancholia, with a strong fear of death, for herself,
her husband and children, reported verbally to him
the day before receiving my letter as follows, " I think

Mrs. ------ will soon improve, for her hair is getting

smooth; and I always notice that our patients get better
whenever their hair ceases to be rough and unmanage-

Dr. Browne attributes the persistently rough eondi-

20 Quoted by Dr. Maudsley, ' Body and Mind,' 1870, p. 41,


tion of the hair In many insane patients, in part to their
minds being always somewhat disturbed, and in part to
the effects of habit,—that is, to the hair being frequently
and strongly erected during their many recurrent parox-
3Tsnis. In patients in whom the bristling of the hair is
extreme, the disease is generally permanent and mortal;
but in others, in whom the bristling is moderate, as soon
as they recover their health of mind the hair recovers
its smoothness.

In a previous chapter we have seen that with animals
the hairs are erected by the contraction of minute, un-
striped, and involuntary muscles, which run to each
separate follicle. In addition to this action, Mr. J. AVood
has clearly ascertained by experiment, as he informs
me, that with man the hairs on the front of the head
which slope forwards, and those on the back which slope
backwards, are raised in opposite directions by the con-
traction of the oceipito-frontalis or scalp muscle. So
that this muscle seems to aid in the erection of the hairs
on the head of man, in the same manner as the hornolo-
gouspannicidus carnosus aids, or takes the greater part,
in the erection of the spines on the backs of some of the
lower animals.

Contraction of the platysma my aides muscle.—This
muscle is spread over the sides of the neck, extending
downwards to a little beneath the collar-bones, and up-
wards to the lower part of the cheeks. A portion, called
the risorius, is represented in the woodcut (M) fig. 2.
The contraction of this muscle draws the corners of the
month and the lower parts of the cheeks downwards and
"backwards. It produces at the same time divergent,
longitudinal, prominent ridges on the sides of the neck
in the young; and, in old thin persons, fine transverse
wrinkles. This muscle is sometimes said not to be under





the control of the will; but almost every one, if told to
draw the corners of Ms mouth backwards and downwards
with great force, brings it into action. I have, however,
heard of a man who can voluntarily act on it only on one
' side of his neck.

Sir C. Bell21 and others have stated that this muscle
is strongly contracted under the influence of fear; and
Duchenne insists so strongly on its importance in the
expression of this emotion, that he.calls it the muscle of
fright.22 He admits, however, that its contraction is
quite inexpressive unless associated with widely open
eyes and mouth. He has given a photograph (copied
and reduced in the accompanying woodcut) of the same
old man as on former occasions, with his eyebrows strong-
ly raised, his mouth opened, and the platysma contracted,
all by means of galvanism. The original photograph
was shown to twenty-four persons, and they were sep-
arately asked, without any explanation being given, what
expression was intended: twenty instantly answered,
" intense fright" or " horror; " three said pain, and one
extreme discomfort. Dr. Duchenne has given another
photograph of the same old man, with the platysma
contracted, the eyes and mouth opened, and the eye-
brows rendered oblique, by means of galvanism. The
expression thus induced is very striking (see Plate VII.
fig. 2); the obliquity of the eyebrows adding the appear-
ance of great mental distress. The original was shown
to fifteen persons; twelve answered terror or horror, and
three agony or great suffering. From these cases, and
from an examination of the other photographs given
by Dr. Duchenne, together with his remarks thereon,
I think there can be little doubt that the contraction of

21 * Anatomy of Expression,' p. 168.

22 Mecanisme de la Phys. Humaine, Album, Legende xi.



the platysma does add greatly to the expression of fear.
Nevertheless this muscle ought hardly to be called that
of fright, for its contraction is certainly not a necessary
concomitant of this state of mind.

FIG. 20.—Terror, from a photograph by Dr. Dnclienne.

A man may exhibit extreme terror in the plainest
manner by death-like pallor, by drops of perspiration on
Ms skin, and by utter prostration, with all the muscles
of Bis body, including the platysma, completely relaxed.
Although Dr. Browne has often seen this muscle quiver-




ing and contracting in the insane, he has not been able
to connect its action with any emotional condition in
them, though he carefully attended to patients suffering
from great fear. Mr. Nieol, on the other hand, has ob-
served three cases in which this muscle appeared to be
more or less permanently contracted under the influence
of melancholia, associated with much dread; but in one
of these cases, various other muscles about the neck and
head were subject to spasmodic contractions.

Dr. W. Ogle observed for me in one of the London
hospitals about twenty patients, just before they were
put under the influence of chlorofprm for operations.
They exhibited some trepidation, but no great terror.
In only four of the cases was the platysma visibly con-
tracted; and it did not begin to contract until the pa-
tients began to cry. The muscle seemed to contract at
the moment of each deep-drawn inspiration; so that it
is very doubtful whether the contraction depended at
all on the emotion of fear. In a fifth case, the patient,
who was not chloroformed, was much terrified; and Ms
platysma was more forcibly and persistently contracted
than in the other cases. But even here there is room
for doubt, for the muscle which appeared to be unusually
developed, was seen by Dr. Ogle to contract as the man
moved his head from the pillow, after the operation was

As I felt much perplexed why, in any case, a super-
ficial muscle on the neck should be especially affected
by fear, I applied to my many obliging correspondents
for information about the contraction of this muscle
under other circumstances. It would be superfluous to
give all the answers which I have received. They show
that this muscle acts, often in a variable manner and
degree, under many different conditions. It is violently
contracted in hydrophobia^ and in a somewhat less da-


gree in lockjaw; sometimes in a marked manner during
the insensibility from chloroform. Dr. W. Ogle observed
two male patients, suffering from such difficulty in
breathing, that the trachea had to be opened, and in both
the platysma was strongly contracted. One of these men
overheard the conversation of the surgeons surrounding
him, and when he was able to speak, declared that he
had not been frightened. In some other cases of extreme
difficulty of respiration, though not requiring trache-
otomy, observed by Drs. Ogle and Langstaff, the platysma
was not contracted.

Mr. J. Wood, who has studied with such care the
muscles of the human body, as shown by his various
publications, has often seen the platysma contracted in
vomiting, nausea, and disgust; also in children and
adults under the influence of rage,—for instance, in
Irishwomen, quarrelling and brawling together with
angry gesticulations. This may possibly have been due
to their high and angry tones; for I know a lady, an ex-
cellent musician, who, in singing certain high notes,
always contracts her platysma. So does a young man,
as I have observed, in sounding certain notes on the
flute. Mr. J. Wood informs me that he has found the
platysma best developed in persons with thick necks and
broad shoulders; and that in families inheriting these
peculiarities, its development is usually associated with
much voluntary power over the homologous occipito-
frontalis muscle, by which the scalp can be moved.

ISTone of the foregoing cases appear to throw any light
on the contraction of the platysma from fear; but it
is different, I think, with the following cases. The
gentleman before referred to, who can voluntarily act
on this muscle only on one side of his neck, is positive                             j

that it contracts on both sides whenever he is startled.                             |

Evidence has already been given showing that this mus-                             I;

FEA&.                        CHAP. XII.

cle sometimes contracts, perhaps for the sake of opening
the mouth widely, when the breathing is rendered diffi-
cult by disease, and during the deep inspirations of cry-
ing-fits before an operation. Now, whenever a person
starts at any sudden sight or sound, he instantaneously
draws a deep breath; and thus the contraction of the
platysma may possibly have become associated with the
sense of fear. But there is, I believe, a more efficient
relation. The first sensation of fear, or the imagination
of something dreadful, commonly excites a shudder. I
have caught myself giving a little involuntary shudder
at a painful thought, and I distinctly perceived that my
platysma contracted; so it does if I simulate a shudder.
I have asked others to act in this manner; and in some
the muscle contracted, but not in others. One of my
sons, whilst getting out of bed, shuddered from the cold,
and, as he happened to have his hand on his neck, he
plainly felt that this muscle strongly contracted. He
then voluntarily shuddered, as he had done on former
occasions, but the platysma was not then affected. Mr.
J. Wood has also several times observed this muscle con-
tracting in patients, when stripped for examination, and
who were not frightened, but shivered slightly from the
cold. Unfortunately I have not been able to ascertain
whether, when the whole body shakes, as in the cold stage
of an ague fit, the platysma contracts. But as it cer-
tainly often contracts during a shudder; and as a shud-
der or shiver often accompanies the first sensation of
fear, we have, I think, a clue to its action in this latter
case.23 Its contraction, however, is not an invariable

23 Duchenne takes, in fact, this view (ibid. p. 45), as he
attributes the contraction of the platysma to the shiver-
ing- of fear (frisson de la peur); but he elsewhere compares
the action with that which causes the hair of frightened
quadrupeds to stand erect; and this can hardly be consid-
ered as quite correct.

CHAP. XII.     DILATATION OF THE PUPILS.              3Q3

concomitant of fear; for it probably never acts under the
influence of extreme, prostrating terror.

Dilatation of the Pupils.—Gratiolet repeatedly in-
sists 24 that the pupils are enormously dilated whenever
terror is felt. I have no reason to doubt the accuracy
of this statement, but have failed to obtain confirmatory
evidence, excepting in the one instance before given of
an insane woman suffering from great fear. When
writers of fiction speak of the eyes being widely dilated,
I presume that they refer to the eyelids. Munro's state-
ment,25 that with parrots the iris is affected by the pas-
sions, independently of the amount of light, seems to
bear on this question; but Professor Bonders informs
me, that he has often seen movements in the pupils of
these birds which he thinks may be related to their power
of accommodation to distance, in nearly the same manner
as our own pupils contract when our eyes converge for
near vision. Gratiolet remarks that the dilated pupils
appear as if they were gazing into profound darkness.
No doubt the fears of man have often been excited in the
dark; but hardly so often or so exclusively, as to account
for a fixed and associated habit having thus arisen. It
seems more probable, assuming that Gratiolet's state-
ment is correct, that the brain is directly affected by
the powerful emotion of fear and reacts on the pupils;
but Professor Bonders informs me that this is an ex-
tremely complicated subject. I may add, as possibly
throwing light on the subject, that Dr. Fyffe, of Netley
Hospital, has observed in two patients that the pupils
were distinctly dilated during the cold stage of an ague
fit. Professor Bonders has also often seen dilatation,
of the pupils in incipient faintness.

24' De la Physionomie,' pp. 51, 256, 346.

25 As quoted in White's * Gradation in Man/ p. 57.




Horror.—The state of mind expressed by this term
implies terror, and is in some cases almost synonymous
with it. Many a man must have felt, before the blessed
discovery of chloroform, great horror at the thought of
an impending surgical operation. He who dreads, as
well as hates a man, will feel, as Milton uses the word,
a horror of him. We feel horror if we see any one, for
instance a child, exposed to some instant and crushing
danger. Almost every one would experience the same
feeling in the highest degree in witnessing a man being
tortured or going to be tortured. In these cases there
is no danger to ourselves; but from the power of the
imagination and of sympathy we put ourselves in the
position of the sufferer, and feel something akin to fear.

Sir C. Bell remarks,26 that " horror is full of energy;
the body is in the utmost tension, not unnerved by fear."
It is, therefore, probable that horror would generally
be accompanied by the strong contraction of the brows;
but as fear is one of the elements, the eyes and mouth
would be opened, and the eyebrows would be raised, as
far as the antagonistic action of the corrugators per-
mitted this movement. Duchenne has given a photo-
graph 2T (fig. 21) of the same old man as before, with his
eyes somewhat staring, the eyebrows partially raised, and
at the same time strongly contracted, the mouth opened,
and the platysma in action, all effected by the means of
galvanism. He considers that the expression thus pro-
duced shows extreme terror with horrible pain or torture.
A tortured man, as long as his sufferings allowed him
to feel any dread for the future, would probably exhibit
horror in an extreme degree. I have shown the original
of this photograph to twenty-three persons of both sexes

28 * Anatomy of Expression,' p. 169.

27 'Meeanisme de la Pnysionomie,' Album, pi.  65, pp.

44, 45.

CHAP. XII.                         HOEEOE.                                 305

and various ages; and thirteen immediately answered
horror, great pain., torture, or agony; three answered
extreme fright; so that sixteen answered nearly in
accordance with Duchenne's belief. Six, however,
said anger, guided no doubt, by the strongly con-
tracted brows, and overlooking the peculiarly opened
mouth. One said disgust. On the whole, the evidence
indicates that we have here a fairly good representation
of horror and agony. The photograph before referred
to (PI. VII. fig. 2) likewise exhibits horror; but in this
the obliq\ie eyebrows indicate great mental distress in
place of energy.

Horror is generally accompanied by various gestures,
which differ in different individuals. Judging from pic-
tures, the whole body is often turned away or shrinks;                         f
or the arms are violently protruded as if to push away !
some dreadful object. The most frequent gesture, as far f
as can be inferred from the action of persons who en- |
deavour to express a vividly-imagined scene of horror, f
is the raising of both shoulders, with the bent arms f
pressed closely against the sides or chest. These move- I
ments are nearly the same with those commonly made |
when we feel very cold; and they are generally aecom- t
panied by a shudder, as well as by a deep expiration or |
inspiration, according as the chest happens at the time
to be expanded or contracted. The sounds thus made
are expressed by words like uh or ugh.2B It is not, how-
ever, obvious why, when we feel cold or express a sense
of horror, we press our bent arms against our bodies,
raise our shoulders, and shudder.

28 See remarks to this effect by Mr. Wedgwood, in the

Introduction to his ' Dictionary of English Etymology,' 2nd                             ! \;

edit. 1872, p. xxxvii.   He shows by intermediate forms that                              f?

the sounds here referred to have probably given rise to                              \

many words, such as ugly, huge, &c.                                                                  |




FIG. 21.—Horror and Agony, copied from a photograph by Dr. Duchenne.

Conclusion.—I have now endeavoured to describe the
diversified expressions of fear, in its gradations from
mere attention to a start of surprise, into extreme terror
and horror. Some of the signs may he accounted for
through the principles of habit, association, and inherit-
ance,—such as the wide opening of the mouth and eyes,
with upraised eyebrows, so as to see as quickly as possible
all around us, and to hear distinctly whatever sound may
reach our ears. For we have thus habitually prepared

CHAP. XII.                     CONCLUSION.                              307

ourselves to discover and encounter any danger. Some
of the other signs of fear may likewise be accounted for,
at least in part, through these same principles. Men,
during numberless generations, have endeavoured to es-
cape from their enemies or danger by headlong flight,
or by violently struggling with them; and such great
exertions will have caused the heart to beat rapidly, the
breathing to be hurried, the chest to heave, and the nos-
trils to be dilated. As these exertions have often been
prolonged to the last extremity, the final result will have
been utter prostration, pallor, perspiration, trembling of
all the muscles, or their complete relaxation. And now,
whenever the emotion of fear is strongly felt, though it
may not lead to any exertion, the same results tend to
reappear, through the force of inheritance and associa-

Nevertheless, it is probable that many or most of the
above symptoms of terror, such as the beating of the
heart, the trembling of the muscles, cold perspiration,
&c., are in large part directly due to the disturbed or
interrupted transmission of nerve-force from the eerebro-
spinal system to various parts of the body, owing to the
mind being so powerfully affected. We may confidently
look to this cause, independently of habit and associa-
tion, in such cases as the modified secretions of the in-
testinal canal, and the failure of certain glands to act.
With respect to the involuntary bristling of the hair, we
have good reason to believe that in the case of animals
this action, however it may have originated, serves, to-
gether with certain voluntary movements, to make them
appear terrible to their enemies; and as the same invol-
untary and voluntary actions are performed by animals
nearly related to man, we are led to believe that man has
retained through inheritance a relic of them, now become
useless. It is certainly a remarkable fact, that the minute

308                             CONCLUSION.                    PHAP, XII.

ttnstriped muscles, by which the hairs thinly scattered
over man's almost naked body are erected, should have
been preserved to the present day; and that they should
still contract under the same emotions, namely, terror
and rage, which cause the hairs to stand on end in the
lower members of the Order to which man belongs.






Nature of a blush—Inheritance—The parts of the body
most affected—Blushing in the various races of man—
Accompanying gestures—Confusion of mind—Causes of
blushing—Self-attention, the fundamental element—
Shyness—Shame, from broken moral laws and conven-
tional rules—Modesty—Theory of blushing—Recapitu-

BLUSHING is the most peculiar and the most human
of all expressions. Monkeys redden from passion, but it
would require an overwhelming amount of evidence to
make us believe that any animal could blush. The red-
dening of the face from a blush is due to the relaxation
of the muscular coats of the small arteries, by which
the capillaries become filled with blood; and this de-
pends on the proper vaso-motor centre being affected.
No doubt if there be at the same time much mental agi-
tation, the general circulation will be affected; but it is
not due to the action of the heart that the network of
minute vessels covering the face becomes under a sense
of shame gorged with blood. We can cause laughing
by tickling the skin, weeping or frowning by a blow,
trembling from the fear of pain, and so forth; but we
cannot cause a blush, as Dr. Burgess remarks,1 by

1 * The Physiology or Mechanism of Blushing/ 1839, p.
156. I shall have occasion often to quote this work in the
present chapter.




11. i

any physical means.,—that is by any action on the
body. It is the mind which must be affected. Blush-
ing is not only involuntary; but the wish to restrain it,
by leading to self-attention actually increases the ten-

The young blush much more freely than the old, but
not during infancy.,2 which is remarkable, as we know
that infants at a very early age redden from passion. I
have received authentic accounts of two little girls
blushing at the ages of between two and three years;
and of another sensitive child, a year older, blushing,
when reproved for a fault. Many children, at a some-
what more advanced age blush in a strongly marked
manner. It appears that the mental powers of infants
are not as yet sufficiently developed to allow of their
blushing. Hence, also, it is that idiots rarely blush.
Dr. Crichton Browne observed for me those under his
care, but never saw a genuine blush, though he
has seen their faces flash, apparently from joy,
when food was placed before them, and from anger.
Nevertheless some, if not utterly degraded, are capable
of blushing. A macrocephalous idiot, for instance, thir-
teen years old, whose eyes brightened a little when he
was pleased or amused, has been described by Dr. Behn,3
as blushing and turning to one side, when undressed for
medical examination.

Women blush much more than men. It is rare to
see an old man, but not nearly so rare to see an old
woman blushing. The blind do not escape. Laura
Bridgman, born in this condition, as well as completely

2  Dr. Burg-ess, ibid. p. 56.   At p. 33 he also remarks on
•women blushing' more freely than men, as stated below.

3 Quoted by Vogt, * Memoire sur les Mierocephales,' 1867,
p. 20.   Dr. Burgess (ibid. p. 56) doubts whether idiots ever

CHAP. XIII.             *      BLUSHING.                              311

deaf, blushes.4 The Eev. K. H. Blair, Principal of the
Worcester College,, informs me that three children born
blind, out of seven or eight then in the Asylum, are
great blushers. The blind are not at first conscious that
they are observed, and it is a most important part of their
education, as Mr. Blair informs me, to impress this
knowledge on their minds; and the impression thus
gained would greatly strengthen the tendency to blush,
by increasing the habit of self-attention.

The tendency to blush is inherited. Dr. Burgess
gives the case 5 of a family consisting of a father, mother,
and ten children, all of whom, without exception, were
prone to blush to a most painful degree. The children
were grown up; " and some of them were sent to travel
in order to wear away this diseased sensibility, but noth-
ing was of the slightest avail." Even peculiarities in
blushing seem to be inherited. Sir James Paget, whilst
examining the spine of a girl, was struck at her singular
manner of blushing; a big splash of red appeared first
on one cheek, and then other splashes, variously scat-
tered over the face and neck. He subsequently asked
the mother whether her daughter always blushed in
this peculiar manner; and was answered, "Yes, she
takes after me." Sir J. Paget then perceived that by
asking this question he had caused the mother to
blush; and she exhibited the same peculiarity as her

In most cases the face, ears and neck are the sole
parts which redden; but many persons, whilst blushing
intensely, feel that their whole bodies grow hot and
tingle; and this shows that the entire surface must be
in some manner affected. Blushes are said sometimes

* Lieber ' On the Vocal Sounds,* <fec.;   Smithsonian Con-
tributions, 1851, vol. ii. p. 6.
6 Ibid. p. 182.





to commence on the forehead, but more commonly on
the cheeks, afterwards spreading to the ears and neck.6
In two Albinos examined by Dr. Burgess, the blushes
commenced by a small circumscribed spot on the cheeks,
over the parotidean plexus of nerves, and then increased
into a circle; between this blushing circle and the bhish
on the neck there was an evident line of demarcation;
although both arose simultaneously. The retina, which
is naturally red in the Albino, invariably increased at
the same time in redness.7 Every one must have noticed
how easily after one blush fresh blushes chase each other
over the face. Blushing is preceded by a peculiar sensa-
tion in the skin. According to Dr. Burgess the redden-
ing of the skin is generally succeeded by a slight pallor,
which shows that the capillary vessels contract after di-
lating. In some rare cases paleness instead of redness
is caused under conditions which would naturally induce
a blush. For instance, a young lady told me that in a
large and crowded party she caught her hair so firm-
ly on the button of a passing servant, that it took
some time before she could be extricated; from her sen-
sations she imagined that she had blushed crimson;
but was assured by a friend that she had turned ex-
tremely pale.

I was desirous to learn how far down the body blushes
extend; and Sir J. Paget, who necessarily has frequent
opportunities for observation, has kindly attended to
this point for me during two or three years. He finds
that with women who blush intensely on the face,
ears, and nape of neck, the blush does not commonly
extend any lower down the body. It is rare to see it as
low down as the collar-bones and shoulder-blades; and
he has never himself seen a single instance in which it

6 Moreau, in edit, of 1820 of Lavater, vol. iv. p. 303.

7 Burgess, ibid. p. 38, on paleness after blushing, p. 177.

CHAP. XIII.                     BLUSHING.

extended below the upper part of the chest. lie has also
noticed that blushes sometimes die away downwards,
not gradually and insensibly, but by irregular ruddy
blotches. Dr. LangstalF has likewise observed for me
several women whose bodies did not in the least redden
while their faces were crimsoned with blushes. With
the insane, some of whom appear to be particularly liable
to blushing, Dr. J. Crichton Browne, has several times
seen the blush extend as far down as the collar-bones,
and in two instances to the breasts. He gives me the
case of a married woman, aged twenty-seven, who suf-
fered from epilepsy. On the morning after her arrival
in the Asylum, Dr. Browne, together with his assistants,
visited her whilst she was in bed. The moment that he
approached, she blushed deeply over her cheeks and
temples; and the blush spread quickly to her ears. She
was much agitated and tremulous. He unfastened the
collar of her chemise in order to examine the state of
her lungs; and then a brilliant -blush rushed over her
chest, in an arched line over the upper third of each
breast, and extended downwards between the breasts
nearly to the ensiform cartilage of the sternum. This
case is interesting, as the blush did not thus extend
downwards until it became intense by her attention being
drawn to this part of her person. As the examination
proceeded she became composed, and the blush disap-
peared; but on several subsequent occasions the same
phenomena were observed.

The foregoing facts show that, as a general rule,
with English women, blushing does not extend beneath
the neck and upper part of the chest. Nevertheless Sir
J. Paget informs me that he has lately heard of a case,
on which he can fully rely, in which a little girl, shocked
by what she imagined to be an act of indelicacy, blushed
all over her abdomen and the upper parts of her legs.


314                               BLUSHING.                     CHAP. XIII.

Moreau also 8 relates, on the authority of a celebrated
painter, that the chest, shoulders, arms, and whole body
of a girl, who unwillingly consented to serve as a model,
reddened when she was first divested of her clothes.

It is a rather curious question why, in most cases the
face, ears, and neck alone redden, inasmuch as the whole
surface of the body often tingles and grows hot. This
seems to depend, chiefly, on the face and adjoining parts
of the skin having been habitually exposed to the air,
light, and alternations of temperature, by which the
small arteries not only have acquired the habit of readily
dilating and contracting, but appear to have become
unusually developed in comparison with other parts of
the surface.9 It is probably owing to this same cause,
as M. Moreau and Dr. Burgess have remarked, that the
face is so liable to redden under various circumstances,
such as a fever-fit, ordinary heat, violent exertion, anger,
a slight blow, &c.; and on the other hand that it is liable
to grow pale from cold and fear, and to be discoloured
during pregnancy. The face is also particularly liable
to be affected by cutaneous complaints, by small-pox,
erysipelas, &c. This view is likewise supported by the
fact that the men of certain races, who habitually go
nearly naked, often blush over their arms and chests and
even down to their waists. A lady, who is a great blusher,
informs Dr. Crichton Browne, that when she feels
ashamed or is agitated, she blushes over her face, neck,
wrists, and hands, — that is, over all the exposed portions
of her skin. Nevertheless it may be doubted whether
the habitual exposure of the skin of the face and neck,
and its consequent power of reaction under stimulants
of all kinds, is by itself sufficient to account for the much

8 See Lavater, edit, of 1820, vol. iv. p. 303.

9 Burg-ess, ibid. pp. 114, 122.   Moreau in Lavater, ibid. vol.
iv. p. 293.


CHAP. XIII.                     BLUSHING.                             315

greater tendency in English women of these parts than
of others to blush; for the hands are well supplied with
nerves and small vessels, and have been as much ex-
posed to the air as the face or neck, and jet the hands
rarely blush. We shall presently see that the attention
of the mind having been directed much more frequently
and earnestly to the face than to any other part of the
body, probably affords a sufficient explanation.

Blushing in the various races of man.—The small
vessels of the face become filled with blood, from the
emotion of shame, in almost all the races of man, though
in the very dark races no distinct change of colour can
be perceived. Blushing is evident in all the Aryan na-
tions of Europe, and to a certain extent with those of
India. But Mr. Erskine has never noticed that the necks
of the Hindoos are decidedly affected. With the Lep-
chas of Sikhim, Mr. Scott has often observed a faint
blush on the cheeks, base of the ears, and sides of the
neck, accompanied by sunken eyes and lowered head.
This has occurred when he has detected them in a false-
hood, or has accused them of ingratitude. The pale,
sallow complexions of these men render a blush much
more conspicuous than in most of the other natives of
India. With the latter, shame, or it may be in part fear,
is expressed, according to Mr. Scott, much more plainly
by the head being averted or bent down, with the eyes
wavering or turned askant, than by any change of colour
in the skin.

The Semitic races blush freely, as might have been
expected, from their general similitude to the Aryans.
Thus with the Jews, it is said in the Book of Jeremiah
(chap. vi. 15), "Nay, they were not at all ashamed,
neither could they blush." Mrs. Asa Gray saw an Arab
managing his boat clumsily on the Nile, and when

316                               BLUSHING.                    CHAP. XIII.

laughed at by His'companions, "he blushed quite to the
back of his neck." Lady Duff Gordon remarks that a
young Arab blushed on coming into her presence.10

Mr. Swinlxoe has seen the Chinese blushing, but he
thinks it is rare; yet they have the expression " to red-
den with sliame." Mr. Geach informs me that the Chi-
nese settled in Malacca and the native Malays of the in-
terior both blush. Some of these people go nearly naked,
and he particularly attended to the downward extension
of the blush. Omitting the cases in which the face alone
was seen to blush, Mr. Geach observed that the face,
arms, and breast of a Chinaman, aged 24 years, reddened
from shame; and with another Chinese, when asked why
he had not done his work in better style, the whole body
was similarly affected. In two Malaysai he saw the face,
neck, breast, and arms blushing; and in a third Malay
(a Bugis) the blush extended down to the waist.

The Polynesians blush freely. The Eev. Mr. Stack
has seen hundreds of instances with the New Zealanders.
The following case is worth giving, as it relates to an
old man who was unusually dark-coloured and partly
tattooed. After having let his land to an Englishman
for a small yearly rental, a strong passion seized him to
buy a gig, which had lately become the fashion with the
Maoris. He consequently wished to draw all the rent
for four years from his tenant, and consulted Mr. Stack
whether he could do so. The man was old, clumsy, poor,
and ragged, and the idea of his driving himself about in
his carriage for display amused Mr. Stack so much that
he could not help bursting out into a laugh; and then
" the old man blushed up to the roots of his hair."

10 * Letters from Egypt,' 1865, p. 66.   Lady Gordon is mis-
taken when she says Malays and Mulattoes never blush."

11  Capt.  Osborn   (' Quedah,' p.  199), in  speaking  of  a
Malay, whom he reproached for cruelty, says he was glad
to see that the man blushed.

CHAP. XIII.                     .BLUSHING.                               317

Forster says that " you may easily distinguish a spread-
ing blush" on the cheeks of the fairest women in Ta-
hiti.12 The natives also of several of the other archi-
pelagoes in the Pacific have been seen to blush.

Mr. Washington Matthews has often seen a blush on
the faces of the young squaws belonging to various wild
Indian tribes of North America. At the opposite ex-
tremity of the continent in Tierra del'Fuego, the natives,
according to Mr. Bridges, " blush much, but chiefly in
regard to women; but they certainly blush also at their
own personal appearance." This latter statement agrees
with what I remember of the Fuegian, Jemmy Button,
who blushed when he was quizzed about the care which
he took in polishing his shoes, and in otherwise adorn-
ing himself. With respect to the Aymara Indians on
the lofty plateaus of Bolivia, Mr. Forbes says,13 that
from the colour of their skins it is impossible that their
blushes should be as clearly visible as in the white races;
still under such circumstances as would raise a blush
in us, " there can always be seen the same expression of
modesty or confusion; and even in the dark, a rise of
temperature of the skin of the face can be felt, exactly
as occurs in the European." With the Indians who in-

12 J. R. Forster, ' Observations during a Voyage round
the World,' 4to, 1778, p. 229. Waitz gives (' Introduction to
Anthropology,' Eng. translat. 1863, vol. i. p. 135) references
for other islands in the Pacific. See, also, Dampier ' On the
Blushing of the Tunquinese ' (vol. ii. p. 40); but I have not
consulted this work. Waitz quotes Bergmaiin, that the
Kalmucks do not blush, but this may be doubted after
what we have seen with respect to the Chinese. He also
quotes Both, who denies that the Abyssinians are capable
of blushing. Unfortunately, Capt. Speedy, who lived so
long with the Abyssinians, has not answered my inquiry
on this head. Lastly, I must add that the Bajah Brooke
has never observed the least sign of a blush with the Dyaks
of Borneo; on the contrary under circumstances which
would excite a blush in us, they assert " that they feel the
blood drawn from their faces."

u Transact, of the Ethnological Soc. 1870, vol. ii. p. 16.

318                               BLUSHING.                     CHAP. XIII.

habit the hot, equable, and damp parts of South America,
the skin apparent!}* does not answer to mental excite-
ment so readily as with the natives of the northern and
southern parts of the continent, who have long been
exposed to great vicissitudes of climate; for Huniboldt
quotes without a protest the sneer of the Spaniard,
"How can those be trusted, who know not how to
blush ?"14 Yon Spix and Martius, in speaking of the
aborigines of Brazil, assert that they cannot properly be
said to blush; " it was only after long intercourse with
the whites, and after receiving some education, that we
perceived in the Indians a change of colour expressive
of the emotions of their minds." 15 It is, however, in-
credible that the power of blushing could have thus
originated; but the habit of self-attention, consequent
on their education and new course of life, would have
much increased any innate tendency to blush.

Several trustworthy observers have assured me that
they have seen on the faces of negroes an appearance
resembling a blush, under circumstances which would
have excited one in us, though their skins were of an
ebony-black tint. Some describe it as blushing brown,
but most say that the blackness becomes more intense.
An increased supply of blood in the skin seems in some
manner to increase its blackness; thus certain exan-
thematous diseases cause the affected places in the negro
to appear blacker, instead of, as with us, redder.16 The
skin, perhaps, from being rendered more tense by the

14  Humboldt, ' Personal Narrative,' Eng. translat. vol.
iiL p. 229.

15  Quoted by Prichard, Phys. Hist, of Mankind, 4th edit.
1851, vol. I. p. 271.

m See, on this head, Burgess, ibid. p. 32.    Also Waitz,                      j

' Introduction to Anthropology,' Eng. edit, vol. i. p.  135.                      I

Korean gives a detailed account (* Lavater,* 1820, torn. iv.                      ?

p. 302) of the blnshing of a Madagascar negress-slave when                      ',

forced by her brutal master to exhibit her naked bosom.                         \


CHAP, XIII.                      BLUSHING.                               319

filling of the capillaries, would reflect a somewhat dif-
ferent tint to what it did before. That the capillaries of
the face in the negro become filled with blood, under

the emotion of shame/we may feel confident; because                          •*

a perfectly characterized albino negress, described by                           *'

Buff on,17 showed a faint tinge of crimson on her cheeks                           I

when she exhibited herself naked.   Cicatrices of the skin                          ';

remain for a long time white in the negro, and Dr.                          1

Burgess, who had frequent opportunities of observing                           #

a scar of this kind on the face of a negress, distinctly saw                           /'

that it " invariably became red whenever she was abrupt-    .                      i|

ly spoken to, or charged with any trivial offence." 1S                           |

The blush could be seen proceeding from the circum-                           1

ference of the scar towards the middle, but it did not                           I

reach the centre.    Mulattoes are often great blushers,                           ,'•

blush succeeding blush over their faces.    From these                           ^

facts there can be no doubt that negroes blush, although                           J
no redness is visible on the skin.

I am assured by Gaika and by Mrs. Barber that the                           ^
Kafirs of South Africa never blush; but this may only
mean that no change of colour is distinguishable.   Gaika
adds that under the circumstances which would make a

European blush, his countrymen " look ashamed to keep                           \

their heads up."                                                                                    *!

It is asserted by four of my informants that the                           \

Australians, who are almost as black as negroes, never                           I

blush.   A fifth answers doubtfully, remarking that only                           I

a very strong blush could be seen, on account of the dirty                           I

state of their skins.   Three observers state that they do                            |

blush;10 Mr. S. Wilson adding that this is noticeable                            |

17  Quoted by Prichard, Phys. Hist, of Mankind, 4th edit.                                I
1851, vol. i. p. 225.                                                                                                   I

18 Burgess, ibid. p. 31.   On mulattoes blushing, see p. 33.                                f
I have received similar accounts with respect to mulattoes.                                C

10 Barring-ton  also says that the Australians of "New                                j|

South Wales blush, as quoted by Waitz, ibid. p. 135.                                           f

BLUSHING.                    CHAP. XIII

only under a strong emotion, and when the skin is not
too dark from long exposure and want of cleanliness.
Mr. Lang answers., " I have noticed that shame almost
always excites a blush, which frequently extends as low
as the neck." Shame is also shown, as he adds, " by the
eyes being turned from side to side." As ilr. Lang was
a teacher in a native school, it is probable that he chiefly
observed children; and we know that they blush more
than adults. Mr. G. Taplin has seen half-castes blush-
ing, and he says that the aborigines have a word expres-
sive of shame. Mr. Hagenauer, who is one of those who
has never observed the Australians to blush, says that
he has " seen them looking down to the ground on ac-
count of shame;" and the missionary, Mr. Buhner, re-
marks that though "I have not been able to detect
anything like shame in the adult aborigines, I have
noticed that the eyes of the children, when ashamed,
present a restless, watery appearance, as if they did not
know where to look.55

The facts now given are sufficient to show that blush-
ing, whether or not there is any change of colour, is
common to most, probably to all, of the races of man.

Movements and gestures which accompany Blushing.                  '

—Under a keen sense of shame there is a strong desire
for concealment.20 We turn away the whole body, more
especially the face, which we endeavour in some manner
to hide. An ashamed person can hardly endure to meet                 f


* Mr. Wedgwood says (Diet, of English Etymology, vol.
ill. 1865, p. 155) that the word shame " may well originate                    1

in the idea of shade or concealment, and may be illustrated
by the Low German sc&ewup, shade or shadow." Gratiolet
(Be la Phys. pp. 357—362) has a good discussion on the
gestures accompanying shame; but some of his remarks
seem to me rather fanciful. See, also, Burgess (ibid. pp.
69, 134) on the same subject.





the gaze of those present, so that he almost invariably
casts down his eyes or looks askant. As th&ce generally
exists at the same time a strong wish to avoid the ap-
pearance of shame, a vain attempt is made to look di-
rect at the person who causes this feeling; and the an-
tagonism between these opposite tendencies leads to vari-
ous restless movements in the eyes. I have noticed two .
ladies who, whilst blushing, to which they are very liable,
have thus acquired, as it appears, the oddest trick of in-
cessantly blinking their eyelids with extraordinary
rapidity. An intense blush is sometimes accompanied
by a slight effusion of tears;21 and this, I presume, is due
to the lacrymal glands partaking of the increased supply
of blood, which we know rushes into the capillaries of
the adjoining parts, including the retina.

Many writers, ancient and modern, have noticed the
foregoing movements; and it has already been shown
that the aborigines in various parts of the world often
exhibit their shame by looking downwards or askant,
or by restless movements of their eyes. Ezra cries out
(ch. ix. 6), <e 0, my God! I am ashamed, and blush to
lift up my head to thee, my God." In Isaiah (ch. 1. 6)
we meet with the words, " I hid not my face from
shame." Seneca remarks (Epist. xi. 5) " that the Eoman
players hang down their heads, fix their eyes on the
ground and keep them lowered, but are unable to blush
in acting shame." According to Macrobius, who lived
in the fifth century (e Saturnalia/ B. vii. c. 11), " Nat-
ural philosophers assert that nature being moved by
shame spreads the blood before herself as a veil, as we

21 Burgess, ibid. pp. 181, 182. Boerhaave also noticed
(as quoted by Gratiolet, ibid. p. 361) the tendency to the
secretion of tears during1 intense blushing. Mr. Bulmer,
as we have seen, speaks of the " watery eyes " of the chil-
dren of the Australian aborigines when ashamed.

322                              BLUSHING.                   CHAP. XIII.

see any one blushing often puts his hands "before his
face." Shakspeare makes Marcus (' Titus Andronicus/
act ii, sc. 5) say to his niece, "Ah! now thou turn'st
away thy face for shame." A lady informs me that she
found in the Lock Hospital a girl whom she had for-
merly known, and who had "become a wretched cast-
away, and the poor creature, when approached, hid her
face under the bed-clothes, and could not be persuaded
to uncover it. We often see little children, when shy or
ashamed, turn away, and still standing up, bury their
faces in their mother's gown; or they throw themselves
face downwards on her lap.

Confusion of mind.—Most persons, whilst blushing
intensely, have their mental powers confused. This is
recognized in such common expressions as " she was
covered with confusion." Persons in this condition lose
their presence of mind, and utter singularly inappro-
priate remarks. They are often much distressed, stam-
mer, and make awkward movements or strange grimaces.
In certain cases involuntary twitehings of some of the
facial muscles may be observed. I have been informed
by a young lady, who blushes excessively, that at such
times she does not even know what she is saying. When
it was suggested to her that this might be due to her
distress from the consciousness that her blushing was
noticed, she answered that this could not be the case,
cc as she had sometimes felt quite as stupid when blush-
ing at a thought in her own room."

I will give an instance of the extreme disturbance
of mind to which some sensitive men are liable. A gen-
tleman, on whom I can rely, assured me that he had
been an eye-witness of the following scene:—A small
dinner-party was given in honour of an extremely shy
man, who, when he rose to return thanks, rehearsed the




speech, which he had evidently learnt by heart, in abso-
lute silence,, and did not utter a single word; but he acted
as if he were speaking with much emphasis. His friends,
perceiving how the ease stood, loudly applauded the
imaginary bursts of eloquence, whenever his gestures
indicated a pause, and the man never discovered that
he had remained the whole time completely silent. On
the contrary, he afterwards remarked to my friend, with
much satisfaction, that he thought he had succeeded
uncommonly well.

When a person is much ashamed or very shy, and
blushes intensely, his heart beats rapidly and his breath-
ing is disturbed. This can hardly fail to affect the circu-
lation of the blood within the brain, and perhaps the
mental powers. It seems however doubtful, judging
from the still more powerful influence of anger and fear
on the circulation, whether we can thus satisfactorily
account for the confused state of mind in persons whilst
blushing intensely.

The true explanation apparently lies in the intimate
sympathy which exists between the capillary circulation
of the surface of the head and face, and that of the brain.
On applying to Dr. J. Crichton Browne for information,
he has given me various facts bearing on this subject.
When the sympathetic nerve is divided on one side of
the head, the capillaries on this side are relaxed and
become filled with blood, causing the skin to redden and
to grow hot, and at the same time the temperature within
the cranium on the same side rises. Inflammation of the
membranes of the brain leads to the engorgement of the
face, ears, and eyes with blood. The first stage of an
epileptic fit appears to be the contraction, of the vessels
of the brain, and the first outward manifestation is an ex-
treme pallor of countenance. Erysipelas of the head
commonly induces delirium. Even the relief given to


324                                .BLUSHING.                      CHAP, XIII.

a severe headache by burning the skin with strong lotion,
depends, I presume, on the same principle.

Dr. Browne has often administered to his patients
the vapour of the nitrite of amyl,22 which has the singu-
lar property of causing vivid redness of the face in from
thirty to sixty seconds. This flushing resembles blush-
ing in almost every detail: it begins at several distinct
points on the face, and spreads till it involves the whole
surface of the head, neck, and front of the chest; but
has been observed to extend only in one case to the ab-
t»                              domen. The arteries in the retina become enlarged;

If                              the eyes glisten, and in one instance there was a slight

effusion of tears. The patients are at first pleasantly
stimulated, but, as the flushing increases, they become
confused and bewildered. One woman to whom the
vapour had often been administered asserted that, as
soon as she grew hot, she grew muddled. With persons
just commencing to blush it appears, judging from their
bright eyes and lively behaviour, that their mental pow-
ers are somewhat stimulated. It is only when the blush-
ing is excessive that the mind grows confused. Therefore
it would seem that the capillaries of the face are affected,
both during the inhalation of the nitrite of amyl and
during blushing, before that part of the brain is affected
on which the mental powers depend.

Conversely when the brain is primarily affected, the
circulation of the skin is so in a secondary manner. Dr.
Browne has frequently observed, as he informs me, scat-
tered red blotches and mottlings on the chests of epileptic
patients. In these cases, when the skin on the thorax or
abdomen is gently rubbed with a pencil or other object,
or, in strongly-marked cases, is merely touched by the

~ See also Dr. J. Crichton Browne's Memoir on this sub-
ject in the'West Biding Lunatic Asylum Medical Report,'
1871, pp. 95-98.

CHAP. XIII.                     BLUSHING.                             325                            ;

finger, the surface becomes suffused in less than half a                         I

minute with bright red marks, which spread to some                         ',

distance on each side of the touched point, and persist                         \

for several minutes.   These are the cerebral macula of                         >
Trousseau; and they indicate, as Dr. Browne remarks,
a highly modified condition of the cutaneous vascular
system.   If, then, there exists, as cannot be doubted, an
intimate sympathy between the capillary circulation in

that part of the brain on which our mental powers de-                         J

pend, and in the skin of the face, it is not surprising that                         ^

the moral causes which induce intense blushing should                         J

likewise induce, independently of their own disturbing                         j

influence, much confusion of mind.                                                       »

The Nature of the Mental States which induce Blush-
ing.—These consist of shyness, shame, and modesty;
the essential element in all being self-attention. Many                         'J

reasons can be assigned for believing that originally
self-attention directed to personal appearance, in relation
to the opinion of others, was the exciting cause; the                     . >

same effect being subsequently produced, through the
force of association, by self-attention in relation to moral
conduct. It is not the simple act of reflecting on our
own appearance, but the thinking what others think of                          !

us, which excites a blush. In absolute solitude the most
sensitive person would be quite indifferent about his ap-
pearance. "We feel blame or disapprobation more acutely
than approbation; and consequently depreciatory re-                          i

marks or ridicule, whether of our appearance or conduct,
causes us to blush much more readily than does praise.
But undoubtedly praise and admiration are highly effi-
cient: a pretty girl blushes when a man gazes intently
at her, though she may know perfectly well that he is
not depreciating her. Many children, as well as old and
sensitive persons blush, when they are much praised.                          ;




Hereafter the question will be discussed, how it has
arisen that the consciousness that others are attending
to our personal appearance should have led to the capil-
laries, especially those of the face, instantly becoming
filled with blood.

My reasons for believing that attention directed to
personal appearance, and not to moral conduct, has been
the fundamental element in the acquirement of the habit
of blushing, will now be given. They are separately
light, but combined possess, as it appears to me, con-
siderable weight. It is notorious that nothing makes
a shy person blush so much as any remark, however
slight, on his personal appearance. One cannot notice
even the dress of a woman much given to blushing,
wihout causing her face to crimson. It is sufficient
to stare hard at some persons to make them, as Col-
eridge remarks, blush,—"account for that he who
can." 23

"With the two albinos observed by Dr. Burgess,24
"the slightest attempt to examine their peculiarities
invariably " caused them to blush deeply. "Women are
much more sensitive about their personal appearance
than men are, especially elderly women in comparison
with elderly men, and they blush much more freely.
The young of both sexes are much more sensitive on
this same head than the old, and they also blush much
more freely than the old. Children at a very early age
do not blush; nor do they show those other signs of self-
consciousness which generally accompany blushing; and
it is one of their chief charms that they think nothing
about what others think of them. At this early age
they will stare at a stranger with a fixed gaze and un-

28 In a discussion on so-called animal magnetism in
* Table Talk,' vol. i.
M Ibid. p. 40.

CHAP. XIII.                     BLUSHINa.                              327

blinking eyes, as on an inanimate object, in a manner
which we elders cannot imitate.

It is plain to every one that young men and women
are highly sensitive to the opinion of each other with
reference to their personal appearance; and they blush
incomparably more in the presence of the opposite sex
than in that of their own.25 A young man, not very
liable to blush, will blush intensely at any slight ridicule
of his appearance from a girl whose judgment on any
important subject he would disregard. N"o happy pair
of young lovers, valuing each other's admiration and
love more than anything else in the world, probably ever
courted each other without many a blush. Even the
barbarians of Tierra del Fuego, according to Mr. Bridges,
blush " chiefly in regard to women, but certainly also at
their own personal appearance."

Of all parts of the body, the face is most considered
and regarded, as is natural from its being the chief seat
of expression and the source of the voice. It is also the
chief seat of beauty and of ugliness, and throughout
the world is the most ornamented.20 The face, there-
fore, will have been subjected during many generations
to much closer and more earnest self-attention than any
other part of the body; and in accordance with the prin-
ciple here advanced we can understand why it should
be the most liable to blush. Although exposure to alter-
nations of temperature, &c., has. probably much in-
creased the power of dilatation and contraction in the
capillaries of the face and adjoining parts, yet this by

20 Mr. Bain (' The Emotions and the Will,' 1805, p. 65)
remarks on " the shyness of manners which is induced be-
tween the sexes .... from the influence of mntxial re-
gard, by the apprehension on either side of not standing
well with the other."

20 See, for evidence on this subject, ' The Descent of
Man,' &c.> vol. ii. pp. 71, 341.

328                              BLUSHING.                   CHAP. XIII.

itself will hardly account for these parts blushing much,
more than the rest of the body; for it does not explain
the fact of the hands rarely blushing. With Europeans
the whole body tingles slightly when the face blushes
intensely; and with the races of men who habitually
go nearly naked, the blushes extend over a much larger
surface than with us. These facts are, to a certain ex-
tent., intelligible, as the self-attention of primeval man.,
as well as of the existing races which still go naked, will
not have been so exclusively confined to their faces, as
is the case with the people who now go clothed.

We have seen that in all parts of the world persons
who feel shame for some moral delinquency, are apt to
avert, bend down, or hide their faces, independently of
any thought about their personal appearance. The ob-
ject can hardly be to conceal their blushes, for the face
is thus averted or hidden under circumstances whicli
exclude any desire to conceal shame, as when guilt is
fully confessed and repented of. It is, however, probable
that primeval man before he had acquired much moral
sensitiveness would have been highly sensitive about his
personal appearance, at least in reference to the other
sex, and he would consequently have felt distress at any
depreciatory remarks about his appearance; and this
is one form of shame. And as the face is the part of the
body which is most regarded, it is intelligible that any
one ashamed of his personal appearance would desire
to conceal this part of his body. The habit having been
thus acquired, would naturally be carried on when shame
from strictly moral causes was felt; and it is not easy
otherwise to see why under these circumstances there
should be a desire to hide the face more than any other
part of the body.

The habit, so general with every one who feels
ashamed, of turning away, or lowering his eyes, or rest-

CHAP. XIIL                      BLUSHING.                               339                             j


lessly moving them from side to side, probably follows                           !

from each glance directed towards those present, bring-
ing home the conviction that he is intently regarded;
and he endeavours, by not looking at those present, and
especially not at their eyes, momentarily to escape from
this painful conviction.                                                                            ;

Shyness.—This odd state of mind, often called
shamefacedness, or false shame, or mauvaise Itonte, ap-
pears to be one of the most efficient of all the causes of
blushing. Shyness is, indeed, chiefly recognized by the
face reddening, by the eyes being averted or cast down,
and by awkward, nervous movements of the body. Many
a woman blushes from this cause, a hundred, perhaps
a thousand times, to once that she blushes from having
done anything deserving blame, and of which she is truly
ashamed. Shyness seems to depend on sensitiveness to
the opinion, whether good or bad, of others, more espe-
cially with respect to external appearance. Strangers
neither know nor care anything about our conduct or
character, but they may, and often do, criticize our ap-
pearance: hence shy persons are particularly apt to be
shy and to blush in the presence of strangers. The con-
sciousness of anything peculiar, or even new, in the
dress, or any slight blemish on the person, and more
especially on the face—points which are likely to at-
tract the attention of strangers—makes the shy intoler-
ably shy. On the other hand, in those eases in which
conduct and not personal appearance is concerned, we
are much more apt to be shy in the presence of acquaint-
ances, whose judgment we in some degree value, than
in that of strangers. A physician told me that a young                           j-

man, a wealthy duke, with whom he had travelled as
medical attendant, blushed like a girl, when he paid him
ids fee; yet this young man probably would not have                            ;•

330                            BLUSHING.                   CHAP. XIII.

blushed and been shy, had he been paying a bill to a
tradesman. Some persons, however, are so sensitive,
that the mere act of speaking to almost any one is suf-
ficient to rouse their self-consciousness, and a slight blush
is the result.

Disapprobation or ridicule, from our sensitiveness on
this head, causes shyness and blushing much more readily
than does approbation; though the latter with some per-
sons is highly efficient. The conceited are rarely shy;
for they value themselves much too highly to expect
depreciation. Why a proud man is often shy, as appears
to be the case, is not so obvious, unless it be that, with
all his self-reliance, he really thinks much about the
opinion of others, although in a disdainful spirit. Per-
sons who are exceedingly shy are rarely shy in the pres-
ence of those with whom they are quite familiar, and
of whose good opinion and sympathy they are perfectly
assured;—for instance, a girl in the presence of her
mother. I neglected to inquire in my printed paper
whether shyness can be detected in the different races of
man; but a Hindoo gentleman assured Mr. Erskine that
it is recognizable in his countrymen.

Shyness, as the derivation of the word indicates in
several languages,27 is closely related to fear; yet it is
distinct from fear in the ordinary sense. A shy man no
doubt dreads the notice of strangers, but can hardly be
said to be afraid of them; he may be as bold as a hero
in battle, and yet have no self-confidence about trifles
in the presence of strangers. Almost every one is ex-
tremely nervous when first addressing a public assem-
bly, and most men remain so throughout their lives;
but this appears to depend on the consciousness of a

27 H. Wedgwood, Diet. English Etymology, vol. iii. 1865,
p. 184.   So with, the Latin word verecundus.

, XIIL                        BlutTSHING.

great coming exertion, with its associated effects on the
system, rather than on shyness;2S although a timid or
shy man no doubt suffers on such occasions infinitely
more than-another. With yery young children it is dif-
ficult to distinguish "between fear and shyness; out this
latter feeling with them has often seemed to me to par-
take of the character of the wildness of an untamed
animal. Shyness comes on at a very early age. In one
of my own children, when two years and three months
old., I saw a trace of what certainly appeared to be shy-
ness, directed towards myself after an absence from
home of only a week. This was shown not by a blush,
hut by the eyes "being for a few minutes slightly averted
from me. I have noticed on other occasions that shyness
or shaniefacedness and real shame are exhibited in the
eyes of young- children, before they have acquired the
power of blushing.

As shyness apparently depends on self-attention, we
can perceive how right are those who maintain that
reprehending children for shyness, instead of doing
them any good, does much harm, as it calls their atten-
tion still more closely to themselves. It has been, well
urged that "nothing hurts young people more than to
be watched continually about their feelings, to have
their countenances scrutinized, and the degrees of their
sensibility measured by the surveying eye of the -unmerci-
ful spectator. Under the constraint of such examina-
tions they can think of nothing but that they are looked
at, and feel nothing but shame or apprehension."29

28  Mr. Bain (e The Emotions and the Will,' p. 64) has dis-
cussed the " abashed " feelings experienced on these occa-
sions, as well  as the stage-fright of actors unused to the
stage.     Mr. Bain apparently attributes these feelings to
simple apprehension or clread.

29  ' Essays on Practical Education,' by Maria and R. L.
Edge-worth, new edit. vol. ii. 1822, p. 38.   Dr. Burg-ess (ihid.
p. 187) insists strongly to the same effect.


332                               BLUSHING.                    CHAP. XIII.

Moral causes: guilt.—With respect to blushing from
strictly moral causes, we meet with the same fundamental
principle as before,, namely, regard for the opinion of
others. It is not the conscience which raises a blush,
for a man may sincerely regret some slight fault com-
mitted in solitude, or he may suffer the deepest remorse
for an undetected crime, but he will not blush. " I
blush/' says Dr. Burgess,30 " in the presence of my ac-
cusers." It is not the sense of guilt, but the thought
that others think or know us to be guilty which crim-
sons the face. A man may feel thoroughly ashamed at
having told a small falsehood, without blushing; but if
he even suspects that he is detected he will instantly
blush, especially if detected by one whom he reveres.

On the other hand, a man may be convinced that
God witnesses all his actions, and he may feel deeply
conscious of some fault and pray for forgiveness; but
this will not, as a lady who is a great blusher believes,
ever excite a blush. The explanation of this difference
between the knowledge by God and man of our actions
lies, I presume, in man's disapprobation of immoral
conduct being somewhat akin in nature to his deprecia-
tion of our personal appearance, so that through associa-
tion both lead to similar results; whereas the disappro-
bation of God brings up no such association.

Many a person has blushed intensely when accused
of some crime, though completely innocent of it. Even
the thought, as the lady before referred to has observed
to me, that others think that we have made an unkind or
stupid remark, is amply sufficient to cause a blush, al-
though we know all the time that we have been com-
pletely misunderstood. An action may be meritorious
or of an indifferent nature, but a sensitive person, if he

29 ' Essays on Practical Education,' by Maria and R, L,
^dg-eworth, new edit. vol.. ij, 1822, p. 50.

CHIP. XIII.                      BLUSHING.                              333

suspects that others take a different view of it, will "blush.
For instance, a lady by herself may give money to a
beggar without a trace of a blush, but if others are pres-
ent, and she doubts whether they approve, or suspects
that they think her influenced by display, she will blush.
So it will be, if she offers to relieve the distress of a de-
cayed gentlewoman, more particularly of one whom she
had previously known under better circumstances, as
she cannot then feel sure how her conduct will be viewed.
Eut such cases as these blend into shyness.

SreacJies of etiquette.—The rules of etiquette always
refer to conduct in the presence of, or towards others.
They have no necessary connection with the moral sense,
and are often meaningless. Nevertheless as they depend
on the fixed custom of our equals and superiors, whose
opinion we highly regard, they are considered almost
as binding as are the laws of honour to a gentleman.
Consequently the breach of the laws of etiquette, that
is, any impoliteness or gaudier ie^ any impropriety, or an
inappropriate remark, though quite accidental, will
cause the most intense blushing of which a man is capa-
ble. Even the recollection of such an act, after an in-
terval of many years, will make the whole body to tingle.
So strong, also, is the power of sympathy that a sensitive
person, as a lady has assured me, will sometimes blush
at a flagrant breach of etiquette by a perfect stranger,
though the act may in no way concern her.

Modesty.—This is another powerful agent in exciting
blushes; but the word modesty includes very different
states of the mind. It implies humility, and we often
judge of this by persons being greatly pleased and blush-
ing at slight praise, or by being annoyed at praise which
seems to them too high according to their own humble
standard of themselves. Blushing here has the usual




signification of regard for the opinion of others. But
modesty frequently relates to acts of indelicacy; and in-
delicacy is an affair of etiquette, as we clearly see with
the nations that go altogether or nearly naked. He who
is modest,, and blushes easily at acts of this nature, does
so because they are breaches of a firmly and wisely estab-
lished etiquette. This is indeed shown by the derivation
of the word modest from modus, a measure or standard of
behaviour. A blush due to this form of modesty is, more-
over, apt to be intense, because it generally relates to
the opposite sex; and we have seen how in all cases our
liability to blush is thus increased. We apply the term
' modest/ as it would appear, to those who have an
humble opinion of themselves, and to those who are
extremely sensitive about an indelicate word or deed,
simply because in both cases blushes are readily excited,
for these two frames of mind have nothing else in com-
mon. Shyness also, from this same cause, is often mis-
taken for modesty in the sense of humility.

Some persons flush up, as I have observed and have
been assured, at any sudden and disagreeable recollec-
tion. The commonest cause seems to be the sudden
remembrance of not having done something for another
person which had been promised. In this case it may
be that the thought passes half unconsciously through
the mind, " What will he think of me?" and then the
flush would partake of the nature of a true blush. But
•whether such flushes are in most cases due to the capil-
lary circulation being affected, is very doubtful; for we
must remember that almost every strong emotion, such
as anger or great joy, acts on the heart, and causes the
face to redden.

The fact that blushes may be excited in absolute
solitude seems opposed to the view here taken, namely

CHAP. XIIL                      BLUSHING,                               335

that the habit originally arose from thinking about what
others think of us. Several ladies., who are great blush-
ers, are unanimous in regard to solitude; and some of
them believe that they have blushed in the dark. From
what Mr. Forbes has stated with respect to the Aymaras,
and from my own sensations, I have no doubt that this
latter statement is correct. Shakspeare, therefore, erred
when he made Juliet, who was not even by herself, say
to Eomeo (act ii. sc. 2):—

" Thou know'st the mask of nig-ht is on my face;
Else would a maiden blush bepaint my cheek,
For that which thau hast heard me speak to-night."

But when a blush is excited in solitude, the cause almost
always relates to the thoughts of others about us—to
acts done in their presence, or suspected by them; or
again when we reflect what others would have thought
of us had they known of the act. Nevertheless one or
two of my informants believe that they have blushed
from shame at acts in no way relating to others. If this
be so, we must attribute the result to the force of in-
veterate habit and association, under a state of mind
closely analogous to that which ordinarily excites a
blush; nor need we feel surprise at this, as even sym-
pathy with another person who commits a flagrant breach
of etiquette is believed, as we have just seen, sometimes
to cause a blush.

Finally, then, I conclude that blushing,—whether
due to shyness—to shame for a real crime—to shame
from a breach of the laws of etiquette—to modesty from
humility—to modesty from an indelicacy—depends in
all cases on the same principle; this principle being a
sensitive regard for the opinion, more particularly for
the depreciation of others, primarily in relation to our
personal appearance, especially of our faces; and sec-

336                             BLUSHING.                   CHAP. XIIL

ondarily, through the force of association and habit, in
relation to the opinion of others on our conduct.

Theory of Blushing.—We have now to consider, why
should the thought that others are thinking about us
affect our capillary circulation? Sir C. Bell insists31
that blushing " is a provision for expression, as may be
inferred from the colour extending only to the surface
of the face, neck, and breast., the parts most exposed.
It is not acquired; it is from the beginning." Dr.
Burgess believes that it was designed by the Creator in
" order that the soul might have sovereign power of dis-
playing in the cheeks the various internal emotions of
the moral feelings;" so as to serve as a cheek on our-
selves, and as a sign to others, that we were violating
rules which ought to be held sacred. Gratiolet merely
remarks,—" Or, comme il est dans I'ordre de la nature
que Fetre social le plus intelligent soit aussi le plus in-
telligible, cette facult^ de rougeur et de paleur qui dis-
tingue Phomme, est un signe naturel de sa haute per-

The belief that blushing was specially designed by
the Creator is opposed to the general theory of evolu-
tion, which is now so largely accepted; but it forms
no part of my duty here to argue on the general ques-
tion. Those who believe in design, will find it difficult
to account for shyness being the most frequent and
efficient of all the causes of blushing, as it makes the
blusher to suffer and the beholder uncomfortable, with-
out being of the least service to either of them. They
will also find it difficult to account for negroes and other
dark-coloured races blushing, in whom a change of
colour in the skin is scarcely or not at all visible.

31 Bell, ' Anatomy of Expression,' p. 95. Burgess, as
quoted below, ibid. p. 49. Gratiolet, De la Phys. p. 94.

CHAP. XIII.                     BLUSHING-.                              337

No doubt a slight blush adds to the beauty of a maid-
en's face; and the Circassian women who are capable
of blushing, invariably fetch a higher price in the serag-
lio of the Sultan than less susceptible women.32 But
the firmest believer in the efficacy of sexual selection will
hardly suppose that blushing was acquired as a sexual-
ornament. This view would also be opposed to what
has just been said about the dark-coloured races blush-
ing in an invisible manner.

The hypothesis which appears to me the most prob-
able, though it may at first seem rash, is that attention
closely directed to any part of the body tends to inter-
fere with the ordinary and tonic contraction of the small
arteries of that part. These vessels, in consequence, be-
come at such times more or less relaxed., and are in-
stantly filled with arterial blood. This tendency will
have been much strengthened, if frequent attention has
been paid during many generations to the same part,
owing to nerve-force readily flowing along accustomed
channels, and by the power of inheritance. Whenever
we believe that others are depreciating or even consid-
ering our personal appearance, our attention is vividly
directed to the outer and visible parts of our bodies;
and of all such parts we are most sensitive about our
faces, as no doubt has been the case during many past
generations. Therefore;, assuming for the moment that
the capillary vessels can be acted on by close attention,
those of the face will have become eminently susceptible.
Through the force of association, the same efects will
tend to follow whenever we think that others are con-
sidering or censuring our actions or character.

As the basis of this theory rests on 'mental attention
having some power to influence the capillary circula-

82 On the authority of Lady Mary Wortley Montague;
see Burgess, ibid. p. 43.

338                               BLUSHING.                    CHAP. XIII.

tion, it will be necessary to give a considerable body
of details, bearing more or less directly on this subject.
Several observers/3 who from their wide experience and
knowledge are eminently capable of forming a sound
judgment, are convinced that attention or consciousness
(which latter term Sir H. Holland thinks the more ex-
plicit) concentrated on almost any part of the body pro-
duces some direct physical effect on it. This applies
to the movements of the involuntary muscles, and of the
voluntary muscles when acting involuntarily.,—to the
secretion of the glands,—to the activity of the senses and
sensations,—and even to the nutrition of parts.

It is known that the involuntary movements of the
heart are affected if close attention be paid to them.
Gratiolet34 gives the case of a man, who by continually
watching and counting his own pulse, at last caused
one beat out of every six to intermit. On the other
hand, my father told me of a careful observer, who cer-
tainly had heart-disease and died from it, and who posi-
tively stated that his pulse was habitually irregular to
an extreme degree; yet to his great disappointment it

33 In England, Sir H. Holland was, I believe, the first to
consider the influence of mental attention on various parts
of the body, in his ' Medical Notes and Inflections,' 1839,
p. 64. This essay, much enlarged, was reprinted by Sir H.
Holland in his 'Chapters on Mental Physiology,'* 1858, p.
79, from which work I always quote. At nearly the same
time, as well as subsequently, Prof. Laycock discussed the
same subject: see ' Edinburgh Medical and Surgical Jour-
nal,' 1839, July, pp. 17-22. Also his ' Treatise on the Nerv-
ous Diseases of Women,' 1840, p. 110; and ' Mind and Brain,'
vol. ii. 1860, p. 327. Dr. Carpenter's views on mesmerism
have a nearly similar bearing. The great physiologist
Miiller treated (' Elements of Physiology,' Eng. translat.
vol. ii. pp, 937, 1085) of the influence of the attention on
the senses. Sir J. Paget discusses the influence of the mind
on the nutrition of parts, in his ' Lectures on Surgical Pa-
thology,' 1853, vol. i. p. 39: I quote from the 3rd edit, re-
vised by Prof. Turner, 1870, p. 28. See, also, Gratiolet, De
la Phys. pp. 283-287.

84 De la Phys. p. 283.

CHAP. XIII.                      BLUSHING,                                339

invariably became regular as soon as my father entered
the room. Sir H. Holland remarks,35 that " the effect
upon the circulation of a part from the consciousness
suddenly directed and fixed upon it, is often obvious and
immediate." Professor Laycock, who has particularly
attended to phenomena of this nature/0 insists that
"when the attention is directed to any portion of the
body, innervation and circulation are excited locally,
and the functional activity of that portion developed."

It is generally believed that the peristaltic move-
ments of the intestines are influenced by attention being
paid to them at fixed recurrent periods; and these move-
ments depend on the contraction of unstriped and in-
voluntary muscles. The abnormal action of the vol-
untary muscles in epilepsy, chorea, and hysteria is known
to be influenced by the expectation of an attack, and by
the sight of other patients similarly affected.37 So it is
with the involuntary acts of yawning and laughing.

Certain glands are much influenced by thinking of
them, or of the conditions under which they have been
habitually excited. This is familiar to every one in
the increased flow of saliva, when the thought, for in-
stance, of intensely acid fruit is kept before the mind.38
It was shown in our sixth chapter, that an earnest and
long-continued desire either to repress, or to increase,
the action of -the lacrymal glands is effectual. Some
curious cases have been recorded in the case of women,
of the power of the mind on the mammary glands; and
still more remarkable ones in relation to the uterine

85 * Chapters on Mental Physiology,' 1858, p. 111.
88 ' Mind and Brain,' vol. ii. I860, p. 327.

87  ' Chapters on Mental Physiology,' pp. 104-106.

88  See Gratiolet on this subject, De la Phys. p. 287.

89 Dr. J. Crichton Browne, from his observations on the

insane, is convinced that attention directed for a prolonged                           i|

340                              BLUSHING.                    CHAP. XIII.

When we direct our whole attention to any one
sense, its acttt'eness is increased;40 and the continued
habit of close attention, as with blind people to that
of hearing, and with the blind and deaf to that of touch,
appears to improve the sense in question permanently.
There is, also, some reason to believe, judging from the
capacities of different races of man, that the effects are
inherited. Turning to ordinary sensations, it is well
known that pain is increased by attending to it; and Sir
B. Brodie goes so far as to believe that pain may be felt
in any part of the body to which attention is closely
drawn.41 Sir H. Holland also remarks thai we become
not only conscious of the existence of a part subjected
to concentrated attention, but we experience in it various
odd sensations, as of weight, heat, cold, tingling., or itch-

Lastly, some physiologists maintain that the mind

period on any part or organ may ultimately influence its
capillary circulation and nutrition. He has given me some
extraordinary cases; one of these, which cannot here be
related in full, refers to a married woman fifty years of
age, who laboured under the firm and long-continued de-
lusion that she was pregnant. When the expected period
arrived, she acted precisely as if she had been really deliv-
ered of a child, and seemed to suffer extreme pain, so that
the perspiration broke out on her forehead. The result
was that a state of things returned, continuing for three
days, which had ceased during the six previous years. Mr.
Braid gives, in his " Magic, Hypnotism,' &c., 1852, p. 95, and
in Ms other works analogous cases, as welf as other facts
showing the great influence of the will on the mammary
glands, even on one breast alone.

40  Dr. Maudsley has given   (' The Physiology and Pa-
thology of Mind,' 2nd edit. 1868, p. 105), on good authority,
some curious statements with respect to the improvement
of the sense of touch by practice and attention.    It is re-
markable that  wh^n  this sense  has  thus  been  rendered
more acute at any point of the body, for instance, in a
finger, it is likewise improved at the corresponding point
on the opposite side of the body.

41  ' The Lancet,' 1838, pp. 39-40, as quoted by Prof. Lay-
cock, * Nervous Diseases of Women,' 1840, p. lib.

42 ' Chapters on Mental Physiology,' 1858, pp. 91—93.

CHAP. XIII.                     BLUSHING-.                              34-1

can influence the nutrition of parts. Sir J. Paget has
given a curious instance of the power, not indeed of the
mind, but of the nervous system, on the hair. A lady                             ,(,<

" who is subject to attacks of what is called nervous head-
ache, always finds in the morning after such an one, that
some patches of her hair are white, as if powdered with
starch. The change is effected in a night, and in a few                              r

days after, the hairs gradually regain their dark brownish
colour." 43

We thus see that close attention certainly affects                               ^

various parts and organs, which are not properly under
the control of the will.   By what means attention—per-
haps the most wonderful of all the wondrous powers of                           .   *
the mind—is effected, is an extremely obscure subject.
According to Muller,44 the process by which the sensory                             ^
cells of the brain are rendered, through the will, sus-
ceptible of receiving more intense and distinct impres-                             , '<
sions, is closely analogous to that by which the motor
cells are excited to send nerve-force to the voluntary                               \
muscles.   There are many points of analogy in the action
of the sensory and motor nerve-cells; for instance, the                            f
familiar fact that close attention to any one sense causes                               [
fatigue, like the prolonged exertion of any one muscle.45                            ?
When therefore we voluntarily concentrate our attention
on any part of the body, the cells of the brain which re-
ceive impressions or sensations from that part are, it is
probable, in some unknown manner stimulated into
activity.   This may account, without any local change
in the part to which our attention is earnestly directed,
for pain or odd sensations being there felt or increased.


48 * Lectures on Surgical Pathology,' 3rd edit, revised by
Prof. Turner, 1870, pp. 28, 31.

M ' Elements of Physiology,' Eng. translat. vol. ii. p. 938.

48 Prof. Laycoclc has discussed this point in a very in-
teresting manner. See his ' Nervous Diseases of Women/
1840, p. 110,

BLUSHING.                    CHAP. XIII

If, however, the part is furnished with muscles, we
cannot feel sure, as Mr. Michael Foster has remarked
to me, that some slight impulse may not he unconsciously
sent to such muscles; and this would probably cause an
obscure sensation in the part.

In a large number of eases, as with the salivary and
lacrymal glands, intestinal canal, &e., the power of atten-
tion seems to rest, either chiefly, or as some physiologists
think, exclusively, on the vaso-motor system being af-
fected in such a manner that more blood is allowed to
flow into the capillaries of the part in question. This
increased action of the capillaries may in some cases be
combined with the simultaneously increased activity of
the sensorium.

The manner in which the mind affects the vaso-
motor system may be conceived in the following man-
ner. When we actually taste sour fruit, an impression
is sent through the gustatory nerves to a certain part of
the sensorium; this transmits nerve-force to the vaso-
motor centre, which consequently allows the muscular
coats of the small arteries that permeate the salivary
glands to relax. Hence more blood flows into these
glands, and they secrete a copious supply of saliva. !N"ow
it does not seem an improbable assumption, that, wrhen
we reflect intently on a sensation, the same part of the
sensorium, or a closely connected part of it, is brought
into a state of activity, in the same manner as when we
actually perceive the sensation. If so, the same cells
in the brain will be excited, though, perhaps, in a less
degree, by vividly thinking about a sour taste, as by
perceiving it; and they will transmit in the one case, as
in the other,, nerte-force to the vaso-motor centre with,
the same results.

To give another, and, in some respects, more appro-
priate illustration. If a man stands before a liot fire,

CHAP. XIII.                     BLUSHING-.                             343

his face reddens. This appears to he due, as Mr. Michael
Foster informs me, in part to the local action of the
heat, and in part to a reflex action from the vaso-motor
centres.40 In this latter case, the heat affects the nerves
of the face; these transmit an impression to the sensory
cells of the brain, which act on the vaso-motor centre,
and this reacts on the small arteries of the face, relax-
ing them and allowing them to become filled with blood.
Here, again, it seems not improbable that if we were re-
peatedly to concentrate with great earnestness our atten-
tion on the recollection of our heated faces, the same
part of the sensorium which gives us the consciousness
of actual heat would be in some slight degree stimulated,
and would in consequence tend to transmit some nerve-
force to the vaso-motor centres, so as to relax the capil-
laries of the face. Now as men during endless genera-
tions have had their attention often and earnestly di-
rected to" their personal appearance, and especially to
their faces, any incipient tendency in the facial capil-
laries to be thus affected will have become in the course
of time greatly strengthened through the principles just
referred to, namely, nerve-force passing readily along
accustomed channels, and inherited habit. Thus, as it
appears to me, a plausible explanation is afforded of the
leading phenomena connected with the act of blushing.

Recapitulation. — Men and women, and especially the
young, have always valued, in a high degree, their per-
sonal appearance; and have likewise regarded the appear-
ance of others. The face has been the chief object of
attention, though, when man aboriginally went naked,

4C See, also, Mr. Michael Foster, on the action of the
vaso-motor system, in his interesting Lecture before the
Royal Institution, as translated in the * Revue des Cours
Scientifiques,' Sept. 25, 1869, p. 683.




the whole surface of his body would have been attended
to. Our self-attention is excited almost exclusively by
the opinion of others, for no person living in absolute
solitude would care about his appearance. Every one
feels blame more acutely than praise. Now, whenever
we know, or suppose, that others are depreciating our
personal appearance, our attention is strongly drawn
towards ourselves, more especially to our faces. The
probable effect of this will be, as has just been explained,
to excite into activity that part of the sensorium which
receives the sensory nerves of the face; and this will
react through the vaso-motor system on the facial capil-
laries. By frequent reiteration during numberless gen-
erations, the process will have become so habitual, in
association with the belief that others are thinking of
us, that even a suspicion of their depreciation suffices
to relax the capillaries, without any conscious thought
about our faces. With some sensitive persons it is enough
even to notice their dress to produce the same effect.
Through the force, also, of association and inheritance
our capillaries are relaxed, whenever we know, or imag-
ine, that any one is blaming, though in silence, our
actions, thoughts, or character; and, again, when we
are highly praised.

On this hypothesis we can understand how it is that
the face blushes much more than any other part of the
body, though the whole surface is somewhat affected,
more especially with the races which still go nearly
naked. It is not at all surprising that the dark-coloured
races should blush, though no change of colour is visible
in their skins. From the principle of inheritance it is
not surprising that persons born blind should blush.
We can understand why the young are much more af-
fected than the old, and women more than men; and
why the opposite sexes especially excite each other's

CHAP. XIII.                        BLUSHING-.                           345

blushes. It becomes obvious why personal remarks
should be particularly liable to cause blushing, and why
the most powerful of all the causes is shyness; for shy-
ness relates to the presence and opinion of others,, and
the shy are always more or less self-conscious. With
respect to real shame from moral delinquencies, we can
perceive why it is not guilt, but the thought that others
think us guilty, which raises a blush. A man reflecting
on a crime committed in solitude, and stung by his eon-
science, docs not blush; yet he will blush under the
vivid recollection of a detected fault, or of one com-
mitted in the presence of others, the degree of blush-
ing being closely related to the feeling of regard for those
who have detected, witnessed, or suspected his fault-
Breaches of conventional rules of conduct, if they are
rigidly insisted on by our equals or superiors, often cause
more intense blushes even than a detected crime; and
an act which is really criminal, if not blamed by our
equals, hardly raises a tinge of colour on our cheeks.
Modesty from humility, or from an indelicacy, excites a
vivid blush, as both relate to the judgment or fixed cus-
toms of others.

From the intimate sympathy which exists between
the capillary circulation of the surface of the head and
of the brain, whenever there is intense blushing, there
will be some, and often great, confusion of mind. This
is frequently accompanied by awkward movements, and
sometimes by the involuntary twitching of certain

As blushing, according to this hypothesis, is an in-
direct result of attention, originally directed to our per-
sonal appearance, that is to the surface of the body, and
more especially to the face, we can understand the mean-
ing of the gestures which accompany blushing through-
out the world. These consist in hiding the face, or turn-




ing it towards the ground, or to one side. The eyes are
generally averted or are restless, for to look at the man
who causes us to feel shame or shyness, immediately
brings home in an intolerable manner the consciousness
that his gaze is directed on us. Through the principle
of associated habit, the same movements of the face and
eyes are practised, and can, indeed, hardly be avoided,
whenever we know or believe that others are blaming,
or too strongly praising, our moral conduct.






The three leading principles which have determined the
chief movements of expression—Their inheritance—On
the part which the will and intention have played in
the acquirement of various expressions—The instinctive
recognition of expression—The bearing* of our subject
on the specific unity of the races of man—On the suc-
cessive acquirement of various expressions by the pro-
genitors of man—The importance of expression—Con-

I HAVE now described, to the best of my ability,, the
chief expressive actions in man, and in some few of
the lower animals. I have also attempted to explain
the origin or development of these actions through the
three principles given in the first chapter. >.The first
of these principles is, that movements which are service-
able in gratifying some desire, or in relieving some sensa-
tion, if often repeated, become so habitual that they are
performed, whether or not of any service, whenever the
same desire or sensation is felt, even in a very weak de-
gree. ^

& Our second principle is that of antithesis. The habit
of voluntarily performing opposite movements under
opposite impulses has become firmly established in us
by the practice of our whole lives. Hence, if certain
actions have been regularly performed, in accordance
with our first principle, under a certain frame of mind,


there will "be a strong and involuntary tendency to the
pBrformance of directly opposite actions, whether or not
these are of any use, under the excitement of an opposite
frame of mind. "

Our third principle is the direct action of the excited
neryous system on the body, independently of the will,
and independently, in large part, of habit. Experience
shows that nerye-force is generated and set free when-
eyer the eerebro-spinal system, is excited. The direction
which this nerye-force follows is necessarily determined
by the lines of connection between the nerve-cells, with
each other and with various parts of the body. But the
direction is likewise much influenced by habit; inas-
much as nerve-force passes readily along accustomed

The frantic and senseless actions of an enraged man
may be attributed in part to the undirected flow of
nerve-force, and in part to the effects of habit, for these
actions often vaguely represent the act of striking.
They thus pass into gestures included under our first
principle; as when an indignant man unconsciously
throws himself into a fitting attitude for attacking his
opponent, though without any intention of making an
actual attack. TTe see also the influence of habit in all
the emotions and sensations which are called exciting;
for they have assumed this character from having ha-
bitually led to energetic action; and action affects, in an
indirect manner, the respiratory and circulatory system;
and the latter reacts on the brain. Whenever these emo-
tions or sensations are even slightly felt by us, thongh
they may not at the time lead to any exertion, our whole
system is nevertheless disturbed through the force of
habit and association. Other emotions and sensations
are called depressing, because they have not habitually
led to energetic action, excepting just at first, as in the

CHAP. XIV.                 AND SUMMARY.                          349

case of extreme pain, fear, and grief, and they have ulti-
mately caused complete exhaustion; they are conse-
quently expressed chiefly by negative signs and by pros-
•tration. Again, there are other emotions, such as that
of affection, which do not commonly lead to action of any
kind, and consequently are not exhibited by any strongly
marked outward signs. Affection indeed, in as far as it                        f

is a pleasurable sensation, excites the ordinary signs, of
pleasure.                                                                                             \

On the other hand, many of the effects due to the                         |

excitement of the nervous system seem to be quite in-                          1

dependent of the flow of nerve-force along the channels       .                 ;

which have been rendered habitual by former exertions                         (

of the will.   Such effects, which often reveal the state                         ,%

of mind of the person thus affected, cannot at present
be explained; for instance, the change of colour in the                         |

hair from extreme terror or grief,—the cold sweat and                       . |v

the trembling of the muscles from fear,—the modified
secretions of the intestinal canal,—and the failure of                        |

certain glands to act.                                                                           I

Notwithstanding that much remains unintelligible                        f

in our present subject, so many expressive movements          '              v;

and actions can be explained to a certain extent through                        #

the above three principles, that we may hope hereafter                        j

to see all explained by these or by closely analogous

Actions of all kinds, if regularly accompanying any
state of the mind, are at once recognized as expressive.
These may consist of movements of any part of the body,
as the wagging of a dog's tail, the shrugging of a man's
shoulders, the erection of the hair, the. exudation of
perspiration, the state of the capillary circulation, la-
boured breathing, and the use of the vocal or other sound-
producing instruments. Even insects express anger,                 ,,
terror, jealousy, and love by their stridulation. With ^ -

350                    CONCLUDING REMARKS         CHAP. XIV.

man the respiratory organs are of especial importance
in expression., not only in a direct, but in a still higher
degree in an indirect manner.

Few points are more interesting in our present sub-
ject than the extraordinarily complex chain of events
which lead to certain expressive movements. Take, for
instance, the oblique eyebrows of a man suffering from
grief or anxiety. When infants scream loudly from
hunger or pain, the circulation is affected, and the eyes
tend to become gorged with blood: consequently the
muscles surrounding the eyes are strongly contracted
as a protection: this action, in the course of many gen-
erations, has become firmly fixed and inherited: but
when, with advancing years and culture, the habit of
screaming is partially repressed, the muscles round the
eyes still tend to contract, whenever even slight distress
is felt: of these muscles, the pyramidals of the nose are
less under the control of the will than are the others,
and their contraction can be checked only by that of the
central fasciae of the frontal muscle: these latter fasciae
draw up the inner ends of the eyebrows, and wrinkle the
forehead in a peculiar manner, which we instantly recog-
nize as the expression of grief or anxiety. Slight move-
ments, such as these just described, or the scarcely per-
ceptible drawing down of the corners of the mouth, are
the last remnants or rudiments of strongly marked and
intelligible movements. They are as full of significance
to us in regard to expression, as are ordinary rudiments
to the naturalist in the classification and genealogy of
organic beings.

That the chief expressive actions, exhibited by man
and by the lower animals, are now innate or inherited,
—that is, have not been learnt by the individual,—is
admitted by every one. So little has learning or imita-
tion to do with several of them that they are from the

CHAP. XIV.                AND SUMMARY.                         351

earliest days and throughout life quite beyond our con-
trol; for instance, the relaxation of the arteries of the
skin in blushing, and the increased action of the heart
in anger. We may see children, only two or three years
old, and even those born blind, blushing from shame;
and the naked scalp of a very young infant reddens from
passion. Infants scream from pain directly after birth,                               ^

and all their features then assume the same form as
during subsequent years. These facts alone suffice to                                 ;•

show that many of our most important expressions have
not been learnt; but it is remarkable that some, which-                              ~*\

are certainly innate, require practice in the individual,
before they are performed in a full and perfect manner;                                 ''

for instance, weeping and laughing.    The inheritance                             '„ ^

of most of our expressive actions explains the fact that                             ;   '

those bom blind display them, as I hear from the Eev.
E. H. Blair, equally well with those gifted with eyesight.                                 ^

We can thus also understand the fact that the young and                                 |

the old of widely different races, both with man and
animals, express the same state of mind by the^feaote
movements.                                                                                                          j.

We are so familiar with the fact of young and old                              j -

animals displaying their feelings in the same manner,
that we hardly perceive how remarkable it is that a                                 f

young puppy should wag its tail when pleased, depress                             ,$*

its ears and uncover its canine teeth when pretending
to be savage, just like an old dog; or that a kitten should
arch its little back and erect its hair when frightened
and angry, like an old cat. When, however, we turn to
less common gestures in ourselves, which we are accus-
tomed to look at as artificial or conventional,—such as
shrugging the shoulders, as a sign of impotence, or the
raising the arms with open hands and extended fingers,
as a sign of wonder,—we feel perhaps too much surprise
at finding that they are innate. That these and some

352                    CONCLUDING- BEMARKS         CHAP. XIV.

other gestures are inherited, we may infer from their
being performed by very young children, by those born
blind, and by the most widely distinct races of man.
We should also bear in mind that new and highly pecul-
iar tricks, in association with certain states of the mind,
are known to have arisen in certain individuals, and to
have been afterwards transmitted to their offspring, in
some cases, for more than one generation.

Certain other gestures, which seem to us so natural
that we might easily imagine that they were innate, ap-
parently have been learnt like the words of a language.
This seems to be the case with the joining of the uplifted
hands, and the turning up of the eyes, in prayer. So
it is with kissing as a mark of affection; but this is in-
nate, in so far as it depends on the pleasure derived from
contact with a beloved person. The evidence with re-
spect to the inheritance of nodding and shaking the
head, as signs of affirmation and negation, is doubtful;
for they are not universal, yet seem too general to have
been independently acquired by all the individuals of
so many races.

We will now consider how far the will and conscious-
ness have come into play in the development of the
various movements of expression. As far as we can
judge, only a few expressive movements, such as those
just referred to, are learnt by each individual; that is,
were consciously and voluntarily performed during the
early years of life for some definite object, or in imita-
tion of others, and then became habitual. The far greater
number of the movements of expression, and all the more
important ones, are, as we have seen, innate or inherited;
and such cannot be said to depend on the will of the
individual. Nevertheless, all those included under our
first principle were at first voluntarily performed for a

CHAP.XIV-.                  AK33 SUMMARY.                            35$

definite object.,—namely, to escape some danger, to re-
lieve some distress., or to gratify some desire. For in-
stance, there can hardly be a doubt that the animals
which fight with their teeth, have acquired the habit
of drawing back their ears closely to their heads, when
feeling savage, from their progenitors having voluntarily
acted in this manner in order to protect their ears from
being torn by their antagonists; for those animals which
do not fight with their teeth do not thus express a savage^
state of ^ mind. We may infer as highly probable that
we ourselves have acquired the habit of contracting the
muscles round the eyes, whilst crying gently, that is,
without the utterance of any loud sound, from our pro-
genitors, especially during infancy, having experienced,
during the act of screaming, an uncomfortable sensation
in their eyeballs. Again, some highly expressive move-
nients result from the endeavour to check or prevent
other expressive movements; thus the obliquity of the
eyebrows and the drawing down of the corners of the
mouth follow from the endeavour to prevent a screaming-
fit from coming on, or to check it after it has come on.
Here it Is obvious that the consciousness and will must
at first have come into play; not that we are conscious
in these or in other such cases what muscles are brought
into action, any more than when we perform the most
ordinary voluntary movements.

With respect to the expressive movements due to
the principle of antithesis, it is clear that the will has
intervened, though in a remote and indirect manner.
So again with the movements coming under our third
principle; these, in as far as they are influenced by
nerve-force readily passing along habitual channels, have
been determined by former and repeated' exertions of the
will. The effects indirectly due to this latter agency
are often combined in a complex manner, through the



force of habit and association, with those directly re-
sulting from the excitement of the cerebro-spinal sys-
tem. This seems to be the case with the increased action
of the heart under the influence of any strong emotion.
When an animal erects its hair, assumes a threatening
attitude, and utters fierce sounds, in order to terrify an
enemy, we see a curious combination of movements
which were originally voluntary with those that are invol-
untary. It is, however, possible that even strictly in-
voluntary actions, such as the erection of the hair, may
have been affected by the mysterious power of the will.

Some expressive movements may have arisen spon-
taneously, in association with certain states of the mind,
like the tricks lately referred to, and afterwards been
inherited. But I know of no evidence rendering this
view probable.

The power of communication between the members
of the same tribe by means of language has been of para-
mount importance in the development of man; and the
force of language is much aided by the expressive move-
ments of the face and body. "We perceive this at once
when we converse on an important subject with any per-
son whose face is concealed. Nevertheless there are no
grounds, as far as I can discover, for believing that any
muscle has been developed or even modified exclusively
for the sake of expression. The vocal and other sound-
producing organs, by which various expressive noises
are produced, seem to form a partial exception; but I
have elsewhere attempted to show that these organs were
first developed for sexual purposes, in order that one sex
might call or charm the other. Nor can I discover
grounds for believing that any inherited movement,
which now serves as a means of expression, was at first
voluntarily and consciously performed for this special
purpose,—like some of the gestures and the finger-Ian-

CHAP. XIV.                 AND SUMMARY.                         355

cruage used by the deaf and dumb. On the contrary.,
everv true or inherited movement of expression seems
to have had some natural and independent origin. But
\vhen once acquired, such movements may be voluntarily
and consciously employed as a means of communication.
32 ven infants, if carefully attended to, find out at a very

ly age that their screaming brings relief, and they
voluntarily practise it. We may frequently see a
person voluntarily raising his eyebrows to express sur-
prise, or smiling to express pretended satisfaction and
Acquiescence. A man often wishes to make certain ges-
tures conspicuous or demonstrative, and will raise his
extended arms with widely opened fingers above his
liead, to show astonishment, or lift his shoulders to his
ears, to show that he cannot or will not do something.
The tendency to such movements will be strengthened
or increased by their being thus voluntarily and repeat-
edly performed; and the effects may be inherited.

It is perhaps worth consideration whether move-
ments at first used only by one or a few individuals to
express a certain state of mind may not sometimes have
spread to others, and ultimately have become universal,
tlirough the power of conscious and unconscious imita-
tion. That there exists in man a strong tendency to
imitation, independently of the conscious will, is certain.
TMs is exhibited in the most extraordinary manner in
certain brain diseases, especially at the commencement
of inflammatory softening of the brain, and has been
called the " echo sign." Patients thus affected imitate,
without understanding, every absurd gesture which is
made, and every word which is uttered near them, even
in a foreign language.1 In the case of animals, the jackal

1 See the interesting* facts given by Dr. Bateman on
* Aphasia/ 1870, p. 110.

356                    CONCLUDING REMARKS         CHAP. XIV.

and wolf have learnt under confinement to imitate the
barking of the dog. How the barking of the dog, which
serves to express various emotions and desires, and whicli
is so remarkable from having been acquired since the
animal was domesticated; and from being inherited in
different degrees by different breeds, was first learnt,
we do not know; but may we not suspect that imitation
has had something to do with its acquisition, owing to
dogs having long lived in strict association with so
loquacious an animal as man?

In the course of the foregoing remarks and through-
out this volume, I have often felt much difficulty about
the proper application of the terms, will, consciousness,
and intention. Actions, which were at first voluntary, '
soon became habitual, and at last hereditary, and may
then be performed even in opposition to the will. Al-
though they often reveal the state of the mind, this re-
sult was not at first either intended or expected. Even
such words as thatfc certain movements serve as a means
of expression " are apt to mislead, as they imply that
this was their primary purpose or object. This, however,
seems rarely or never to have been the case; the move-
ments having been at first either of some direct use, or
the indirect effect of the excited state of the sensorium.
An infant may scream either intentionally or instinc-
tively to show that it wants food; but it has no wish or
intention to draw its features into the peculiar form
which so plainly indicates misery; yet some of the most
characteristic expressions exhibited by man are derived
from the act of screaming, as has been explained.

Although most of our expressive actions are innate
or instinctive, as is admitted by everyone, it is a dif-
ferent question whether we have any instinctive power
of recognizing them. This has generally been assumed
to be the case; but the assumption has been strongly

AND SUMMARY.                          357

controverted by M. Lemoine.2 Monkeys soon learn to
distinguish, not only the tones of voice of their masters,
but the expression of their faces, as is asserted by a care-
ful observer.3 Dogs well know the difference between
caressing and threatening gestures or tones; and they
seem to recognize a compassionate tone. But as far as
I can make out, after repeated trials, they do not under-
stand any movement confined to the features, excepting
a smile or laugh; and this they appear, at least in some
cases, to recognize. This limited amount of knowledge
has probably been gained, both by monkeys and dogs,
through their associating harsh or kind treatment with
our actions; and the knowledge certainly is not in-
stinctive. Children, no doubt, would soon learn the
movements" of expression in their elders in the same man-
ner as animals learn those of man. Moreover, when a
child cries or laughs, he knows in a general manner
what he is doing and what he feels; so that a very small
exertion'of reason would tell him what crying or laugh-
ing meant in others. But the question is, do our children
acquire their knowledge of expression solely by experi-
ence through the power of association and reason ?

As most of the movements of expression must have
been gradually acquired, afterwards becoming instinc-
tive, there seems to be some degree of ^ priori probabil-
ity that their recognition would likewise have become
instinctive. There is, at least, no greater difficulty in
believing this than in admitting that, when a female
quadruped first bears young, she knows the cry of dis-
tress of her offspring, or than in admitting that many
animals instinctively recognize and fear their enemies;
and of both these statements there can be no reason-

2 * La Physionomie et la Parole,7 1865, pp. 103, 118.
8 Render, ' Naturgeschichte der Saugetbdere von Para-
guay,' 1830, s. 55.


§58                   CONCLUDING REMARKS         CHAP. XIV.

able doiibt. It is however extremely difficult to prove
that our children instinctively recognize any expression.
I attended to this point in my first-horn infant, who
could not have learnt anything by associating with other
children, and I was convinced that he understood a smile
and received pleasure from seeing one, answering it by
another, at much too early an age to have learnt anything
by experience. When this child was about four months
old, I made in his presence many odd noises and strange
grimaces, and tried to look savage; but the noises, if
not too loud, as well as the grimaces, were all taken
as good jokes; and I attributed this at the time to their
being preceded or accompanied by smiles. When five
months old, he seemed to understand a compassionate
expression and tone of voice. When a few days over six
months old, his nurse pretended to cry, and I saw that
his face instantly assumed a melancholy expression, with
the corners of the mouth strongly depressed; now this
child could rarely have seen any other child crying, and
never a grown-up person crying, and I should doubt
whether at so early an age he could have reasoned on
the subject. Therefore it seems to me that an innate
feeling must have told him that the pretended crying
of his nurse expressed grief; and this through the in-
stinct of sympathy excited grief in him.

M. Lemoine argues that, if man possessed an innate
knowledge of expression, authors and artists would not
have found it so difficult, as is notoriously the case, to
describe and depict the characteristic signs of each par-
ticular state of mind. But this does not seem to me a
valid argument. We may actually behold the expression
changing in an unmistakable manner in a man or ani-
mal, and yet be quite unable, as I know from experience,
to analyse the nature of the change. In the two photo-
graphs given by Duchenne of the same old man (Plate




III. figs. 5 and 6), almost every one recognized that the
one represented a true., and the other a false smile; but I
have found it very difficult to decide in what the whole
amount of difference consists. It has often struck me
as a curious fact that so many shades of expression are
instantly recognized without any conscious process of
analysis on our part. No one, I believe, can clearly de-
scribe a sullen or sly expression; yet maiiy observers are
unanimous that these expressions can be recognized in
the various races of man. Almost everyone to whom
I showed Duchennc's photograph of the young man with
oblique eyebrows (Plate II. fig. 2) at once declared that
it expressed grief or some such feeling; yet probably
not one of these persons, or one out of a thousand per-
sons, could beforehand have told anything precise about
the obliquity of the eyebrows with their inner ends
puckered, or about the rectangular furrows on the fore-
head. So it is with many other expressions, of which I
have had practical experience in the trouble requisite
in instructing others what points to observe. If, then,
great ignorance of details does not prevent our recog-
nizing with certainty and promptitude various expres-
sions, I do not see how this ignorance can be advanced
as an argument that our knowledge, though vague and
general, is not innate.

I have endeavoured to show in considerable detail
that all the chief expressions exhibited by man are the
same throughout the world. This fact is interesting,
as it affords a new argument in favour of the several
races being descended from a single parent-stock, which
must have been almost completely human in structure,
and to a large extent in mind, before the period at which
the races diverged from each other. "No doubt similar
structures, adapted for the same purpose, have often
been independently acquired through variation and nat-

360                    CONCLUDING- REMARKS         CHAP. XIV.

ural selection by distinct species; but this view will not
explain close similarity between distinct species in a
multitude of unimportant details. Now if we bear in
mind the numerous points of structure having no rela-
tion to expression, in which all the races of man closely
agree, and then add to them the numerous points, some
of the highest importance and many of the most trifling
value, on which the movements of expression directly
or indirectly depend, it seems to me improbable in the
highest degree that so much similarity, or rather identity
of structure, could have been acquired by independent
means. Yet this must have been the case if the races
of man are descended from several aboriginally distinct
species. It-is far more probable that the many points
of close similarity in the various races are due to inheri-
tance from a single parent-form, which had already as-
sumed a human character.

It is a curious, though perhaps an idle speculation,
how early in the long line of our progenitors the various
expressive movements, now exhibited by man, were suc-
cessively acquired. The following remarks will at least
serve to recall some of the chief points discussed in this
. volume. We may confidently believe that laughter, as
a sign of pleasure or enjoyment, was practised by our
progenitors long before they deserved to be called
human; for very many kinds of monkeys, when pleased,
utter a reiterated sound, clearly analogous to our laugh-
ter, often accompanied by vibratory movements of their
jaws or lips, with the corners of the mouth drawn bacK-
wards and upwards, by the wrinkling of the cheeks, and
even by the brightening of the eyes.

We may likewise infer that fear was expressed from
an extremely remote period, in almost the same manner
as it now is by man; namely, by trembling, the erec-
tion of the hair, cold perspiration, pallor, widely opened

CHAP. XIV.                 AND SUMMARY.                           361

eyes, the relaxation of most of the muscles/and by the
whole body cowering downwards or held motionless.

Suffering, if great, will from the first have caused
screams or groans to be uttered, the body to be con-
torted, and the teeth to be ground together. But our
progenitors will not have exhibited those highly expres-
sive movements of the features which accompany scream-
ing and crying until their circulatory and respiratory
organs, and the muscles surrounding the eyes, had ac-
quired their present structure. The shedding of tears
appears to have originated through reflex action from
the spasmodic contraction of the eyelids, together per-
haps with the eyeballs becoming gorged with blood dur-
ing the act of screaming. Therefore weeping probably
came on rather late in the line of our descent; and this
conclusion agrees with the fact that our nearest allies,
the anthropomorphous apes, do not weep. But we must
here exercise some caution, for as certain monkeys, which
are not closely related to man, weep, this habit might
have been developed long ago in a sub-branch of the
group from which man is derived. Our early progeni-
tors, when suffering from grief or anxiety, would not
have made their eyebrows oblique, or have drawn down
the corners of their mouth, until they had acquired the
habit of endeavouring to restrain their screams. The
expression, therefore, of grief and anxiety is eminently

Eage will have been expressed at a very early period
by threatening or frantic gestures, by the reddening of
the skin, and by glaring eyes, but not by frowning.
For the habit of frowning seems to have been acquired
chiefly from the corrugators being the first muscles to
contract round the eyes, whenever during infancy pain,
anger, or distress is felt, and there consequently is a near
approach to screaming; and partly from a frown serving


362                   CONCLUDING EEMARKS         CHAP. XIV.

as a shade in difficult and intent vision. It seems prob-
able that this shading action would not have become
habitual until man had assumed a completely upright
position, for monkeys do not frown when exposed to a
glaring light. Our early progenitors, when enraged,
would probably have exposed their teeth more freely
than does man, even when giving full vent to his rage,
as with the insane. We may, also, feel almost certain
that they would have protruded their lips, when sulky
or disappointed, in a greater degree than is the case with
our own children, or even with the children of existing
savage races.

Our early progenitors, when indignant or moderately
angry, would not have held their heads erect, opened
their chests, squared their shoulders, and clenched their
fists, until they had acquired the ordinary carriage and
upright attitude of man, and had learnt to fight with
their fists or clubs. Until this period had arrived the
antithetical gesture of shrugging the shoulders, as a
sign of impotence or of patience, would not have been
developed. From the same reason astonishment would
not then have been expressed by raising the arms with
open hands and extended fingers. Nor, judging from
the actions of monkeys, would astonishment have been
exhibited by a widely opened mouth; but the eyes would
have been opened and the eyebrows arched. Disgust
would have been shown at a very early period by move-
ments round the mouth, like those of vomiting,—that is,
if the view which I have suggested respecting the source
of the expression is correct, namely, that our progenitors
had the power, and used it, of voluntarily and quickly
rejecting any food from their stomachs which they dis-
liked. But the more refined manner of showing con-
tempt or disdain, by lowering the eyelids, or turning
away the eyes and face, as if the despised person were

•CHAP. XIV.                 AND SUMMARY.                           363

not worth looking at, would not probably have been ac-
quired until a much later period.

Of all expressions, blushing seems to be the most
strictly human; yet it is common to all or nearly all the
races of man, whether or not any change of colour is
visible in their skin.   The relaxation of the small arteries
of the surface, on which blushing depends, seems to
have primarily resulted from earnest attention directed
to the appearance of our own persons, especially of our
faces, aided by habit, inheritance, and the ready flow
of nerve-force along accustomed channels; and after-
wards to have been extended by the power of associa-
tion to self-attention directed to moral conduct.   It can
hardly be doubted that many animals are capable of
appreciating beautiful colours and even forms, as is
shown by the pains which the individuals of one sex take
in displaying their beauty before those of the opposite
sex.   But it does not seem possible that any animal, until
its mental powers had been developed to an equal or
nearly equal degree with those of man, would have
closely considered and been sensitive about its own per-
sonal appearance.    Therefore we may conclude that
blushing originated at a very late period in the long line
of our descent.

Prom the various facts just alluded to, and given in
the course of this volume, it follows that, if the structure
of our organs of respiration and circulation had differed
in only a slight degree from the state in which they now
exist, most of our expressions would have been wonder-
fully different. A very slight change in the course of
the arteries and veins which run to the head, would prob-
ably have prevented the blood from accumulating in
our eyeballs during violent expiration; for this occurs
in extremely few quadrupeds. In this case we should
not have displayed some of our most characteristic ex-

jv|                         364:                  CONCLUDING- REMARKS         .CHAP. XIV.

I ';

tf                       pressions.   If man'had breathed water by the aid of ex-

1                           ternal branchiae (though the idea is hardly conceivable),

*!                            instead of air through his mouth and nostrils, his fea-

f] •                             tures would not have expressed his feelings much more

ji                              efficiently than now do his hands or limbs. Rage and

>: v  !f disgust, however, would still have been shown by move-

« J  \ ments about the lips and mouth, and the eyes would

;i                           have become brighter or duller according to the state

.'{                           of the circulation. If our ears had remained movable,

!    ! their movements would have been highly expressive, as

1',  •< is the case with all the animals which fight with their

j   - teeth; and we may infer that our early progenitors thus

! v                          fought, as we still uncover the canine tooth on one side

;   , when we sneer at or defy any one, and we uncover all

1                            our teeth when furiously enraged.


The movements of expression in the face and body,
whatever their origin may have been, are in themselves
of much importance for our welfare. They serve as the
first means of communication between the mother and
her infant; she smiles approval, and thus encourages
her child on the right path, or frowns disapproval. We
readily perceive sympathy in others by their expression;
our sufferings are thus mitigated and our pleasures in-

* ; ' •                   creased; and mutual good feeling is thus strengthened.

The movements of expression give vividness and energy

i '                          to our spoken words. They reveal the thoughts and

intentions of others more truly than do words, which
may be falsified. Whatever amount of truth the so-called

1 •                            science of physiognomy may contain, appears to depend,

as Haller long ago remarked,4 on different persons bring-
ing into frequent use different facial muscles, according

* Quoted by Moreau, in Ms edition of Lavater, 1820, torn,
iv. p. 211*

CHAP. XIV.                 AND SUMMARY.                            365

to their dispositions; the development of these muscles
"being perhaps thus increased,, and the lines or furrows
on the face,, due to their habitual contraction, "being thus
rendered deeper and more conspicuous. The free expres-
sion by outward signs of an emotion intensifies it. On
the other hand, the repression, as far as this is possible,
of all outward signs softens our emotions.5 He who
gives way to violent gestures will increase his rage; he
who does not control the signs of fear will experience
fear in a greater degree; and he who remains passive
when overwhelmed with grief loses his best chance of
recovering elasticity of mind. These results follow
partly from the intimate relation which exists between
almost all the emotions and their outward manifesta-
tions; and partly from the direct influence of exertion
on the heart, and consequently on the brain. Even the
simulation of an emotion tends to arouse it in our minds.
Shakespeare, who from his wonderful knowledge of the
human mind ought to be an excellent judge, says:—

" Is it not monstrous that this player here,
But in a fiction, in a dream of passion,
Could force his soul so to his own conceit,
That, from her working, all his visag-e wann'd;
Tears in his eyes, distraction in 's aspect,
A broken voice, and his whole function suiting-
With forms to his conceit?  And all for nothing-! "

Hamlet, act ii. sc. 2.

We have seen that the study of the theory of ex-
pression confirms to a certain limited extent the con-
clusion that man is derived from some lower animal
form, and supports the belief of the specific or sub-
specific unity of the several races; but as far as my
judgment serves, such confirmation was hardly needed.

B Gratiolet (' Be la Physionomie,' 1865, p. 66) insists on
the truth of this conclusion.

III n                              366 CONCLUDING REMARKS AND SUMMARY. CHAP. XIV.

1 HI


i |,;.,                         We have also seen that expression in itself, or the lan-

i | *';                         guage of the emotions, as it has sometimes been called,

' {| <                         is certainly of importance for the welfare of mankind.

>|/!                          To understand, as far as possible, the source or origin

$'(                          of the various expressions which may be hourly seen

|]« j                          on the faces of the men around us, not to mention our

'j\*                        domesticated animals, ought to possess much interest

* i                           for us.   From these several causes, we may conclude that

I »j!  ;                            the philosophy of our subject has well deserved the at-

M'{ .                           tention which it has already received from several excel-

; ,                             lent observers, and that it deserves still further atten-

1 \ . i                           tion, especially from any able physiologist.





Actions, reflex, 35; coughing,
sneezing, <fec., 35; muscular ac-
tion of decapitated frog, 36; clos-
ing the eyelids, 38 ; starting, 38-
41; contraction of the iris, 41.

Admiration, 289.

Affirmation, signs of, 272.

Albinos, blushing in, 312, 326.

Alison, Professor, 31.

Ambition, 261.

Anatomical drawings by Henle, 5.

Anatomy and Philosophy of Ex-
„ pression, 2.

Anderson, Dr., 106, n. Sff.

Anger, as a stimulant, 79; expres-
sion, 244; in monkeys, 136. See
also Rage.

Animals, special expressions ofJ115.
See also Expression.

------, habitual associated move-
ments in the lower, 42-49; dogs,
43; wolves and jackals, 44;
horses, 45; cats, 46; chickens.
47; sheldrakes, &c.7 48.

Annesley, Lieut, K. A., 124, n. &

Antithesis, the principle of, 50;
dogs, 50, 57; cats, 56; conven-
tional signs, 61.

Anxiety, 176.

Ape, the Gibbon, produces musical
sounds, 87.

Arrectores pili, 101,103.

Association, the power of, 31; in-
stances of, 31, 32.

Astonishment, 278; in monkeys,

Audubon, 98, n. 14.

Avarice, 261.

Azara, 126, a. 0, 128, n. 7.

Baboon, the Anubis, 95,133,137.
Bain, Mr., 8, 31,198,«. j, 213, «. «,
290, «. iff, 327, n. 25.

Baker, Sir Samuel, 113.

Barber, Mrs., 21, 10T, n. j», 263,

Bartlett, Mr., 44, 48, 112, 122,134,


Behn, Dr., 310.
Bell, Mr., 293.
-----, Sir Charles, 1, 9, 22, 49,115,

120, 128, n. 8, 144, 157, 171, 210,

n. 17, 218, 220, 304, 336.
Bennett, 0., 138, a. 16.
Bergeon, 168, n. SI.
Bernard, Claude, 37, 68, 70, n. 5.
Billiard-player, grestnres of the, 5.
Birds  ruffle their  feathers when

angry. 97; when frightened ad-
press them, 99.

Blair, the Rev. E. H., 311, 351.
Blind, tendency of the, to blush.

Blushing, 309; inheritance of, 311;

in the various races of man, 315;

movements and gestures vhieh

accompany,  320;   confusion of

mind, 322; the  nature  of the

mental states which induce, 3§5;

shyness,   329;   moral   causes:

guilt, 332; breaches of etiquette,

333; modesty, 333 ; theory o£


Blyth, Mr., 07.
Bowman, Mr., 159, *. 1& 160, a. #,

165, 169, 225.
Brehm, 96, 128, 1ST,  ». If,  ISS,

n. 15.

Bridges, Mr., 22, S46t 260, SIT.
Bridgman, Laura, 1%, 212, §§€» 27S,

285, 310.

Brinton, Dr., 158, *. IS.
Brodie, Sir B., S40.
Brooke, the Eajth, SO, aOT.
Brown, Dr. R, 108, *. 39.
Browne, Dr. J. Criebtm, IS, ^ n.

10, 154, 188, 197,

2$5, 31S, SS9, n. S9.
BueknUL Brn S96.
BiilmernMr- J-i 3ft, aOT, ffQ, «5^






Bunnett, Mr. Templeton, 20, 177,


Burgess, Dr., 5, 309, 319, 336.
Burton, Captain, 260.
Button. Jemmy, the Fuegian, 214,



Camper, Pierre, 1 and n. 3.

Canine tooth, uncovering the. 247.

Carpenter on the principles of
Comparative Physiology, 47, n.

Cat, the, 46,125; preparing to fight,
56; caressing her master, 56 ;
drawing back the ears, 111; lash-
ing the tail, 126; movements ot
affection, 126; when terrified,
127; erecting the tail, 127; pur-
ring, <fec., 128.

Catlin, 289.

Caton, the Hon. J., 97, fi. 11.

Cebus azara3, the, 132,134.

Chameleons, 105.

Cheerfulness, 210.

Chevreul, M., 6.

Chimpanzee, the, 95,181.

Cistercian Monks, gesture-language
of, 61.

Cobra-de-capello, the, 105.

Conceit, 261, 330.

Contempt, 253; snapping the fin-
gers, 256.

Cooke, the actor, 249.

Cooper, Dr., 105, n. 22.

Cope, Professor, 108, n. 81.

Coughing, 163.

Crantz, 212, 259.


Darwin, Dr., 30, n. 3, 46, n. 16, 77,
n. 11.

Deaf and clumb, opposites used in
teaching them, 61, 62, in. 3.

Deceit, 261.

Decision, or determination, 233;
closing of the niouth, 233-236.

Defiance, 247.

Dejection, 176.

Depression of mind, 79.

Dermal appendages, erection of, 94;
in the chimpanzee and orang, 95;
lion, &c., 96; dog and cat, 96;
horses and cattle, 96 ; elk, 96; bat,
97; birds, 97; under the influ-
ence of anger and fear, 99.

Despair, 176.

Devotion, the expression of, 217-

Dickens, Charles, 241.

Dilatation of the pupils, 303.

Disdain, 253.

Disgust, 256; spitting a sign of,

Dog, the, sympathetic movements
of, 7; turning round before lying
down, 42; pointing, 43 • scratch-
ing, <fec., 45 ; antithesis in expres-.
sion, 57; various gestures of, 63 ;
barking a means of expression,
85; whining, 88; drawing back
the ears, 111; various movements
of, 115; gestures of affection, 118 ;
grinning, 119; pain, 121; atten-
tion, 121; terror, 121; playing,

Donders, Professor, 159, 165, 227,

Duchenne, Dr., 5, 11, 13, 132,143,
148, n. 8,149, n. j, 180,188, 200.


Ears, the, drawing back, <fec., 110 ;
in fighting, dogs, cats, tigers, <fec.,
Ill; horses, 112; guanacoes, <fec.,
112; moose-deer, 112; rabbits,
113 ; wild boars, 113 ; monkeys,
113 ; erection of the, 114.

Edgeworth, Maria and E. L., 331.

Elephants, 113 ; weeping, 165.

Engelmann, Professor, 227.

Envy, 261.

Erection of the dermal appendages,

Erskine, Mr. H., 21, 33, 185, 267,

Etiquette, breaches of, 333.

Expression, anatomy and philoso-
phy of, 2; general principles of,
27; principle of serviceable asso-
ciated habits, 29; principle of an-
tithesis, 50; principle of direct ac-
tion of the nervous system, 66;
means of, in animals, 83; emission
of sounds, 83-94; erection of the
dermal appendages, 94-104; in-
flation of the body, <fec., 104-110;
drawing back the ears, 110-114;
erection of the ears, 114.

Expressions, special, of animals,
115; dogs, 115-125 ; cats, 125-128;
horses, 128-129; ruminants, 129 ;
monkeys, baboons, chimpanzees,

-----, special, of man, 146; suffering,

73,146; crying in children, 147 ;
contraction of the muscles round-
the eyes during screaming, 148;






secretion of tears, 153,162; grief,
1V6 ; obliquity of the eyebrows,
ITS ; grief-muscles, 15, 179-191;
depression of tie corners of the
month, 191-195; joy, 196; high
spirits, cheerfulness, 210; love,
tender feelings, 212; devotion,

Eyebrows, obliquity of the, ITS.

Eyes, the, contraction of the mus-
cles during screaming, 158.


Iface^ muscles of, 22,

Fear, 81, 289; description of, by
Job, 291.

Peelings, tender, 212; excited by
sympathy, 214

lighting, mode of, in animals. 111;
all carnivora fight -with their ca-
nine teeth, 111; dogs, cats, 111;
horses, guanacoes, &c., 112;
moose-deer, 112; rabbits, 113;
boars, 113; elephants, 113; rhinoc-
eros, 113; monkeys, 113.

lingers, snapping, to express con-
tempt, 256.

Torbes, Mr. D., 230, 317, 335.

Ford, Mr., 95.

Porster, J. E., 317.

Poster, Mr. Michael, 342, 343.

Pox, the, 124.

Preycinet, 174.

Progs, 36, 104.

Prowning, the act of, 3, 220; men ot
all races frown, 222; in infants,
223 ; to assist vision, 224; to ex-
clude the bright light, 225.

Pyife, Dr., 303.


G-aika, Christian, 22, 207, 254, 294,

Galton, Mr. P., 33, n. 8.

G-arrod, Mr. A. E., T4, n. 9.

G-askell, Mrs., 150, n. 5.

aeach, Mr. P., 20, 185, 250, 260, 26T,

Gesture-language, 61.

G-estures, 32, 62; inheritance of ha-
bitual, 33, n. 8; accompanying
blushing, 320.

G-lenie, the Kev. S. O.,21,166, n. $0,

Goose-skin, 101, 103.

Gordon, Lady Duff, 316.

Gorilla, the, 95,142.

Gould. 100, n. 15.

Gratiolet, Pierre, 6, 32,118,156,164,

177, 200, 225, 227, n. 6. 254 241
«. #, 336.                                  '

Gray, Professor, and Mrs. Asa, 2*
267,315.                            ^ *

Green, Mrs., 20.

Grief, 80; expression of, 176; obli-
quity of the eyebrows, ITS; de-
pression of the corners of the
mouth, 191-195; in monkeys, 134.

Grief-muscles, 15,179-191.

Gueldenstiidt, 124, n. 4.

Guilt, 261; causes blushing, 332.

Gunning, Dr., 161.

Gtinther, Dr., 100,104,109,«. SO.


Habit, force of, 29.

Hagenauer, the Rev., 19, 102, 2S2,

Hair, change of colour in the, 67,

341; erection of the. 101. 254.'
4 Handbueh der Anatomic des Men-

schen,' 5, -ft. 7.
Eares, 83.
Harvey, SO, n. S.
Hatred, 237; anger, indignation. 244:;

sneering, defiance, uneovtring the

canine tooth, 247.
Heart,   the,  sensitive  to Asternal

emotions, 68; re-acts on the brain,

69; affected by rage, 75.
Helrnholtz, 88, 91.
Helplessness, 263.
Henderson, Mr.T 108, n. SI.
Henle, 22,148, ». *, 5,191, n. 6, 201.
Herpestes, the, 96,103.110.
High spirits, 210; definition of, by

a child, 210.

Hippocrates, 80, n. 8, 72.
Holland, Sir Henry, $6, ST, ft,«. S,

338, n. 35, 339.
Homer's descriptioii of laughter,


Horror, 304.
Horse, the, 45; nibbling, pawing

of, 45; scream in disnress, 84;

fighting, 111; expression of fear,

pleasure, &c., 128.
Humboldt 134, 318.
Humility, 261.
Huschke, 287.

Huxley, Profe^or, 31, n. 5,85, m. 9.
Hyiena, the, 122.

Idiots, weeping, 155: espresslcm of

joy in, m; blushing, 310.
Ill-temper, 228. •





Impotence, 263.

Indignation, 244

Infants, expression in, 13; crying
of, 147; weeping, 152.

Inflation of the body, &c., 104; in
toads and frogs, 104; chameleons,
&c., 105; snakes, 105-110.

Inheritance of habitual gestures,
33, ^. 8; blushing, 311.

Innes, Dr., 266.

Intercommunication, power of, with
social animals, 60; deaf and
dumb, 61; dogs and cats, 63.


Jealousy, 79, 261.

Jerdon, Dr., 108.

Job, description of fear by, 291.

Joy, expression of, 75, 196; in
young children, 76; dogs, horses,
76; monkeys, 132; high spirits,
cheerfulness, 210; love, tender
feelings, 212.

Jukes, Mr. J. B., 274.

Kangaroos, 113.

Kindermann.Herr, 23,147, n. 1.
King, Major Ross, 112.
Kissing, 214.
Kolliker, 100.

Lacy, Mr. Dyson, 19, 230, 241.

Lane, Mr. H. B., 20.

Lang, Mr. Archibald GL, 20, 320.

Langstaff, Dr., 147,151, 313.

Language, gesture, 61.

Laughter, 91,131,163; in monkeys,
131; joy expressed by, 196; in
children, 196; in idiots, 197; in
grown-up persons, 198; caused
by tickling, 199; sparkling eye,
204; tears caused by excessive,
206; among Hindoos, Malays,
&c., 207; to conceal feelings, 212;
incipient, in a baby, 209.

Lavater, G-., 3, n. £, 210, n. 17.

Lawson, 107, n. 28.

Laycock, Professor, 338.

Le Brun, 1, 4, 245, n. IS.

Leichhardt, 260.

Lempine, M., 2, 357.

Lessing's Laocoon, 14, n. 19.

Leydig, 101,103.

Lieber, Mr. F., 197, n. $, 273.

Lister, Mr., 101,199, n. 6.

Litchfield, Mr., 89.

Lizards, 105.

Lockwood, the Rev. S., 87, n. S.

Lorain, M,, 74, n. 9.

Love, maternal, 78; of the opposite

sexes, 78;   expression,  of,   212;

kissing, a mark of, 214; excites

tears, 214.
Low spirits, 176.
Lubbock, Sir John, 154, 214, n. 22.


Man, special expressions of, 146.
See also Expression.

Mankind, Early History of, 256,

Marshall, Mr., 155, n. 9,197, n. 8.

Martin, W. L., 131,136,140, n. 17.

Maitius, 318.

Matthews, Mr. Washington, 22,
228, 256, 268, 275, 289.

Maudsley, Dr., 36, n. 10, 40, n. 14,
244, 340. ».-#?.

Mauvaise honte, 329.

May, Mr. A., 25.

' Me" canisme de la Physionomie Hu-
maine,711, n. 16.

Meditation, 226 ; often accompanied
by certain gestures, 228.

Meyer, Dr. Adolf, 274.

Mind, confusion of, while blushing,

Modesty, 333.

Monkeys, 60; power of intercom-
munication and expression of, 60,
88, 96; their special expressions,
130; pleasure, joy, <fec., 131, 213;
painful emotions, 134; anger, 136;
redden with passion, 137; scream-
ing, 138; sulkiness in, 138; frown-
ing in, 141; astonishment, terror
in, 142.

Moose-deer, the, 112.

Moreau, M., 3, 210, 314.

Mouth, depression of the corners,
191-195; closure expresses deci-
sion, 233-236.

Movements, symbolic, 6; sympa-
thetic, 7; accompanying blush-
ing, 320.

-----, associated habitual, in the

lower animals, 42-49 ; dogs, 43;
wolves and jackals, 44-horses,
45; cats, 46; chickens, 47"; shel-
drakes, <feo., 48.

Mowbray on Poultry, 47, n. 18.

Miiller, Dr. Ferdinand, 20.

-----, Fritz, 11, 29, n. 2, 68, n. 2, 71,

n. 6, 268.

Music, 217.




Negation, signs of, 272.

Nervous system, direct action of
the, 66; change of colour in the
hair, 67, 341; trembling of the
muscles, 67; secretions affected,
68; perspiration, 73 ; rage, 74;
joy, 76 ; terror, 77; love, 78; jeal-
ousy, 79; grief, 80.

Nicol, Mr. Patrick, U,184, 300.


Ogle, Dr. W., 255, n.«?, 270, 293.
OSphant, Mrs., 80, n. IS, 270.
Olmsted, 269.

Owen, Professor, 10, n. IS, 87, n. S,
141, n. 18.


Paget, Sir J., 68,116, 312, 341.

Pain, outward signs of, in animals,
69; in man, 69; in the hippopota-
mus, 70; induces perspiration, 73;
depression, 81; in monkeys, 134

Parsons, J., 1, n. 1.

Persf>iration caused by pain, 73.

Physiology of laughter, 9.

' PJ&ysionomie, dela, et des Mouve-
ments cPExpression,' 6.

Piderit, Dr., 7, 23,151,204,221,235,

Pigs employed to destroy rattle-
snakes, 108.

Platysma myoides muscle, contrac-
tion of the, 297.

Plautus, 228.

Porcupines, 93.

Pouchet, M. G., 67, n. 1.

Pride, 263.

Psychology, Principles of, 9.

Puff-adder, the, 105.

Pupils, dilatation of the, 303.


Queries regarding expression, <fec.,


Rabbits, 83, 93,113.

Kage, 7-4^ 238; trembling a conse-
quence of, 240; Shakespeare's
description of, 240; snarling with
the teeth, 242.

Rattlesnake, the, 106,109.

Reade, Mr. Winwood, 21, 279, m

Reflection, 220; deep, generally ac-
companied with a frown, 222. j

Reflex actions, 35.

Rejlander, Mr., 23, 147, n. 1. 181,


Rengger, 61, 88,132, n. 11,134.
Resignation, 270.

Retching or vomiting, 158,163, 258.
Revenue, 261.

Reynolds, Sir J., 206, n. 15.
Rhinoceros, 73,113.
Riviere, Mr., 25,120.
Rothrock, Dr., 22, 230,250, 259.
Ruminants, their emotions, 129.


Salvin, Mr. F., 44, n. 15.
Sandwich islanders, 174.
Savage and Wyman, Messrs.. 142.
Schmalz, 273.
j Scorn, 253.
! Scott, Sir W., 120.

i-----,;Mr, J., 21, 185, 246-248, 259,

!     267.

-----, Dr. W. R., 62, ». S

Scream, as a call for assistance, 90.
" Secretary-hawk, the, 109.
Secretions, affected by strong emo-
I     tions, 68.

I Senses, the, and the Intellect, 8} n.
•     8,31.

Shaler, Professor, 106,109.
Shame, gestures of, 320; description

of, in Isaiah, Ezra, &c., 321.
Sheldrake, the, 48.
Shoulder, cold, 233.
Shrugging the shoulders, 63, 263L
Shyness, 322,329.
Signs of affirmation and negation,

272; conventional, 61.
Slyness, 262.
Smiling, 202, 308; in io&nfcs, 20$;

in savages, 211.
Smith, Sir Andrew, W.
Smyth, Mr. Brongh, 19, 235, 294.
Snakes, 105-110.
Snapping the fingers, 256L
Sneering- or saiamng, 347.
Sobbing, peculiar to the human.

species, 156.
Somerville, 119.

Sounds, the emission of. efficient as
a means of expreasioii, 8$; be-
tween the sexes, 84; to animals
when separated, 84; of rag«, 85;
the bark of a dog, 85; tuned
jackals, 8S; pigeons. 84; human
voice, 86; as a            of eoortr-

; music, 8&; in yo&ag in-
; of mrprbe, ecmfcemfrt,

; por-     •





cupines, 93; insects,  94; birds,


Speedy, Captain, 22, 260, 267.
Spencer, Mr. Herbert, 9, n. 11, 10,

27, n. 1, 29, n. 2, 71, 86, 198, 225,
. n. 5, 26g.

Sphinx-moth, the  humming-bird,
•    30.

Spitting, a sign of disgust, 260.
Spix, von, 318.
St. John, Mr., 47,126.
Stack, the .Rev. J. W., 20, 231, 246,


Stuart, Mr., 280.
Submission in dogs, 119.
Suffering of body and mind, 146.
Sulkiness, 230 • expression of, pre-
vails throughout the world, 231;

in monkeys, 140, 232.
Summary, 347.
Surprise, 278.
Suspicion, 261.
Sutton, Mr., 95, 134, 136, 143,1G2,


Swinhoe, Mr., 21, 206, 246, 316.
Sympathy, 215.


Taplin, the Eev. George, 20, 185,
245, 320.

Taylor, the Rev. K, 155.

Tears, cause of the secretion of, 162;
laughing, coughing, 163; yawn-
ing, 164; reflex action, 168.

Tegetmeier, Mr., 100.

Tendencies, inherited or instinctive,

Tennent, Sir J. Emerson, 165.

Terror, 77, 289; in dogs, 121; in
monkeys, 142; in an insane
woman, 292; in murderers, 293;
dilatation of the pupils, 303.

Thwaites, Mr., 166, n.$Q.

Tickling, 199.

Toads, 104.

Trembling, induced by fear, 67; by

delight, 67; by fine music, 68;

by rage, 68, 240; by terror, 77.
Turner, Professor W., 101, n. 18.
Tylor, Mr., 61, n. 2, 256, 261, n. 11.


Vanity, 261.

Variation of Animals and Plants

under Domestication, 33, n. 8.
Vaso-motor system, the, 69.
Virchow, 35, n. 9, 70, n. 5.
Vceux, Mr. des, 110, n. S2.
Vogt, C   204, n. 12, 273.
Voice, in animals, 83; the human,


Wallich. Dr., 23, 200.

Weale, Mr. J. P. Hansel, 21, 228,

231, 285.
Wedgwood, Mr. Hensleigh, 104,163,

n. 18, 219, 230, n. 10, 239, n. 6, 273,

320, n. 20.
Weeping, 146; the period of first

shedding tears in infants quite

uncertain, 152; in savages, 153;

in the insane, 154; checking or

increasing   the   habit   of,   155;

screaming and sobbing of infants,

156.   See also Tears.
Weir, Mr. Jcnner, 98.
West, Mr., 21.
Wild-boar, 113.
Wilson, Mr., 19.

-----, Mr. Samuel, 20, 319.

1 System derMi-

mik und Physiognomik," 7.
Wolf. Mr., 26.
Wood, Mr. J., 180, n. $, 297, 302.

-----, Mr. T. V, 23.

Wrinkles, 202.


Yawning, 136,164.


13                 3       S

33       S2TPT3     097