Classics in the History of Psychology

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Christopher D. Green
York University, Toronto, Ontario
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The Principles of Psychology
William James (1890)

The Functions of the Brain

If I begin chopping the foot of a tree, its branches are unmoved by my act, and its leaves murmur as peacefully as ever in the wind. If, on the contrary, I do violence to the foot of a fellow-man, the rest of his body instantly responds to the aggression by movements of alarm or defence. The reason of this difference is that the man has a nervous system whilst the tree has none; and the function of the nervous system is to bring each part into harmonious co-operation with every other. The afferent nerves, when excited by some physical irritant, be this as gross in its mode of operation as a chopping axe or as subtle as the waves of light, conveys the excitement to the nervous centres. The commotion set up in the centres does not stop there, but discharges itself, if at all strong, through the efferent nerves into muscles and glands, exciting movements of the limbs and viscera, or acts of secretion, which vary with the animal, and with the irritant applied. These acts of response have usually the common character of being of service. They ward off the noxious stimulus and support the beneficial one; whilst if, in itself indifferent, the stimulus be a sign of some distant circumstance of practical importance, the animal's acts are addressed to this circumstance so as to avoid its perils or secure its benefits, as the case may be. To take a common example, if I hear the conductor calling ' All aboard!' as I enter the depot, my heart first stops, then palpitates, and my legs respond to the air-waves falling on my tympanum by quickening their movements. If I stumble as I run, the sensation of falling provokes a movement of the hands towards the direction of the fall, the effect of which is to shield the body from too sudden a shock. If a cinder enter my eye, its lids close forcibly and a copious flow of tears tends to wash it out.

[p.13] These three responses to a sensational stimulus differ, however, in many respects. The closure of the eye and the lachrymation are quite involuntary, and so is the disturbance of the heart. Such involuntary responses we know as 'reflex' acts. The motion of the arms to break the shock of falling may also be called reflex, since it occurs too quickly to be deliberately intended. Whether it be instinctive or whether it result from the pedestrian education of childhood may be doubtful; it is, at any rate, less automatic than the previous acts, for a man might by conscious effort learn to perform it more skilfully, or even to suppress it altogether. Actions of this kind, into which instinct and volition enter upon equal terms, have been called 'semi-reflex.' The act of running towards the train, on the other hand, has no instinctive element about it. It is purely the result of education, and is preceded by a consciousness of the purpose to be attained and a distinct mandate of the will. It is a 'voluntary act.' Thus the animal's reflex and voluntary performances shade into each other gradually, being connected by acts which may often occur automatically, but may also be modified by conscious intelligence.

An outside observer, unable to perceive the accompanying consciousness, might be wholly at a loss to discriminate between the automatic acts and those which volition escorted. But if the criterion of mind's existence be the choice of the proper means for the attainment of a supposed end, all the acts seem to be inspired by intelligence, for appropriateness characterizes them all alike. This fact, now, has led to two quite opposite theories about the relation to consciousness of the nervous functions. Some authors, finding that the higher voluntary ones seem to require the guidance of feeling, conclude that over the lowest reflexes some such feeling also presides, though it may be a feeling of which we remain unconscious. Others, finding that reflex and semi-automatic acts may, notwithstanding their appropriateness, take place with an unconsciousness apparently complete, fly to the opposite extreme and maintain that the appropriateness even of voluntary actions owes nothing to the fact that consciousness attends them. They are, according to these writers, results of physiological mechanism pure [p.14] and simple. In a near chapter we shall return to this controversy again. Let us now look a little more closely at the brain and at the ways in which its states may be supposed to condition those of the mind.


Both the minute anatomy and the detailed physiology of the brain are achievements of the present generation, or rather we may say (beginning with Meynert) of the past twenty years. Many points are still obscure and subject to controversy; but a general way of conceiving the organ has been reached on all hands which in its main feature seems not unlikely to stand, and which even gives a most plausible scheme of the way in which cerebral and mental operations go hand in hand.

The best way to enter the subject will be to take a lower creature, like a frog, and study by the vivisectional method the functions of his different nerve-centres. The frog's nerve-centres are figured in the accompanying diagram, which needs no further explanation. I will first proceed to state what happens when various amounts of the anterior parts are removed, in different frogs, in the way in which an ordinary student removes them; that is, with no extreme precautions as to the purity of the operation. We shall in this way reach a very simple conception of the functions of the various centres, involving the strongest possible contrast between the cerebral hemispheres and the lower lobes. This sharp conception will have didactic advantages, for it is often very instructive to start with too simple a formula and correct it later on. Our first formula, as we shall later see, will have to be softened down somewhat by the results of more careful experimentation both on frogs and birds, and by those of the most recent observations on dogs, [p.15] monkeys, and man. But it will put us, from the outset, in clear possession of some fundamental notions and distinctions which we could otherwise not gain so well, and none of which the later more completed view will overturn.

If, then, we reduce the frog's nervous system to the spinal cord alone, by making a section behind the base of the skull, between the spinal cord and the medulla oblongata, thereby cutting off the brain from all connection with the rest of the body, the frog will still continue to live, but with a very peculiarly modified activity. It ceases to breathe or swallow; it lies flat on its belly, and does not, like a normal frog, sit up on its fore paws, though its hind legs are kept, as usual, folded against its body and immediately resume this position if drawn out. If thrown on its back, it lies there quietly, without turning over like a normal frog. Locomotion and voice seem entirely abolished. If we suspend it by the nose, and irritate different portions of its skin by acid, it performs a set of remarkable 'defensive' movements calculated to wipe away the irritant. Thus, if the breast be touched, both fore paws will rub it vigorously; if we touch the outer side of the elbow, the hind foot of the same side will rise directly to the spot and wipe it. The back of the foot will rub the knee if that be attacked, whilst if the foot be cut away, the stump will make ineffectual movements, and then, in many frogs, a pause will come, as if for deliberation, succeeded by a rapid passage of the opposite unmutilated foot to the acidulated spot.

The most striking character of all these movements, after their teleological appropriateness, is their precision. They vary, in sensitive frogs and with a proper amount of irritation, so little as almost to resemble in their machine-like regularity the performances of a jumping-jack, whose legs must twitch whenever you pull the string. The spinal cord of the frog thus contains arrangements of cells and fibres fitted to convert skin irritations into movements of defence. We may call it the centre for defensive movements in this animal. We may indeed go farther than this, and by cutting the spinal cord in various places find that its separate segments are independent mechanisms, for appropriate activities of the head and of the arms and legs respec-[p.16] tively. The segment governing the arms is especially active, in male frogs, in the breeding season; and these members alone with the breast and back appertaining to them, everything else being cut away, will then actively grasp a finger placed between them and remain hanging to it for a considerable time.

The spinal cord in other animals has analogous powers. Even in man it makes movements of defence. Paraplegics draw up their legs when tickled; and Robin, on tickling the breast of a criminal an hour after decapitation, saw the arm and hand move towards the spot. Of the lower functions of the mammalian cord, studied so ably by Goltz and others, this is not the place to speak.

If, in a second animal, the cut be made just behind the optic lobes so that the cerebellum and medulla oblongata remain attached to the cord, then swallowing, breathing, crawling, and a rather enfeebled jumping and swimming are added to the movements previously observed.[1] There are other reflexes too. The animal, thrown on his back, immediately turns over to his belly. Placed in a shallow bowl, which is floated on water and made to rotate, he responds to the rotation by first turning his head and then waltzing around with his entire body, in the opposite direction to the whirling of the bowl. If his support be tilted so that his head points downwards, he points it up; he points it down if it be pointed upwards, to the right if it be pointed to the left, etc. But his reactions do not go farther than these movements of the head.; He will not, like frogs whose thalami are preserved, climb up a board if the latter be tilted, but will slide off it to the ground.

If the cut be made on another frog between the thalami and the optic lobes, the locomotion both on land and water becomes quite normal, and, in addition to the reflexes already shown by the lower centres, he croaks regularly whenever he is pinched under the arms. He compensates rotations, etc., by movements of the head, and turns over from his back; but still drops off his tilted [p.17] board. As his optic nerves are destroyed by the usual operation, it is impossible to say whether he will avoid obstacles placed in his path.

When, finally, a frog's cerebral hemispheres alone are cut off by a section between them and the thalami which preserves the latter, an unpractised observer would not at first suspect anything abnormal about the animal. Not only is he capable, on proper instigation, of all the acts already described, but he guides himself by sight, so that if an obstacle be set up between him and the light, and he be forced to move forward, he either jumps over it or swerves to one side. He manifests sexual passion at the proper season, and, unlike an altogether brainless frog, which embraces anything placed between his arms, postpones this reflex act until a female of his own species is provided. Thus far, as aforesaid, a person unfamiliar with frogs might not suspect a mutilation; but even such a person would soon remark the almost entire absence of spontaneous motion-that is, motion unprovoked by any present incitation of sense. The continued movements of swimming, performed by the creature in the water, seem to be the fatal result of the contact of that fluid with its skin. They cease when a stick, for example, touches his hands. This is a sensible irritant towards which the feet are automatically drawn by reflex action, and on which the animal remains sitting. He manifests no hunger, and will suffer a fly to crawl over his nose unsnapped at. Fear, too, seems to have deserted him. In a word, he is an extremely complex machine whose actions, so far as they go, tend to self-preservation ; but still a machine, in this sense-that it seems to contain no incalculable element. By applying the right sensory stimulus to him we are almost as certain of getting a fixed response as an organist is of hearing a certain tone when he pulls out a certain stop.

But now if to the lower centres we add the cerebral hemispheres, or if, in other words, we make an intact animal the subject of our observations, all this is changed. In addition to the previous responses to present incitements of sense, our frog now goes through long and complex acts of locomotion spontaneously, or as if moved by what in our-[p.18] selves we should call an idea. His reactions to outward stimuli vary their form, too. Instead of making simple defensive movements with his hind legs like a headless frog if touched, or of giving one or two leaps and then sitting still like a hemisphereless one, he makes persistent and varied efforts at escape, as if, not the mere contact of the physiologist's hand, but the notion of danger suggested by it were now his spur. Led by the feeling of hunger, too, he goes in search of insects, fish, or smaller frogs, and varies his procedure with each species of victim. The physiologist cannot by manipulating him elicit croaking, crawling up a board, swimming or stopping, at will. His conduct has become incalculable. We can no longer foretell it exactly. Effort to escape is his dominant reaction, but he may do anything else, even swell up and become perfectly passive in our hands.

Such are the phenomena commonly observed, and such the impressions which one naturally receives. Certain general conclusions follow irresistibly. First of all the following:

The acts of all the centres involve the use of the same muscles. When a headless frog's hind leg wipes the acid, he calls into play all the leg-muscles which a frog with his full medulla oblongata and cerebellum uses when he turns from his back to his belly. Their contractions are, however, combined differently in the two cases, so that the results vary widely. We must consequently conclude that specific arrangements of cells and fibres exist in the cord for wiping, in the medulla for turning over, etc. Similarly they exist in the thalami for jumping over seen obstacles and for balancing the moved body; in the optic lobes for creeping backwards, or what not. But in the hemispheres, since the presence of these organs brings no new elementary form of movement with it, but only determines differently the occasions on which the movements shall occur, making the usual stimuli less fatal and machine-like; we need suppose no such machinery directly co-ordinative of muscular contractions to exist. We may rather assume, when the mandate for a wiping-movement is sent forth by [p.19] the hemispheres, that a current goes straight to the wiping-arrangement in the spinal cord, exciting this arrangement as a whole. Similarly, if an intact frog wishes to jump over a stone which he sees, all he need do is to excite from the hemispheres the jumping-centre in the thalami or wherever it may be, and the latter will provide for the details of the execution. It is like a general ordering a colonel to make a certain movement, but not telling him how it shall be done.[2]

The same muscle, then, repeatedly represented at different heights; and at each it enters into a different combination with other muscles to co-operate in some special form of concerted movement. At each height the movement is discharged by some particular form of sensorial stimulus. Thus in the cord, the skin alone occasions movements; in the upper part of the optic lobes, the eyes are added; in the thalami, the semi-circular canals would seem to play a part; whilst the stimuli which discharge the hemispheres would seem not so much to be elementary sorts of sensation, as groups of sensations forming determinate objects or things. Prey is not pursued nor are enemies shunned by ordinary hemisphereless frogs. Those reactions upon complex circumstances which we call instinctive rather than reflex, are already in this animal dependent on the brain's highest lobes, and still more is this the case with animals higher in the zoological scale.

The results are just the same if, instead of a frog, we take a pigeon, and cut out his hemispheres as they are ordinarily cut out for a lecture-room demonstration. There is not a movement natural to him which this brainless bird cannot perform if expressly excited thereto; only the inner promptings seem deficient, and when left to himself he spends most of his time crouched on the ground with his head sunk between his shoulders as if asleep.[p.20]


All these facts lead us, when we think about them, to some such explanatory conception as this: The lower centres act from present sensational stimuli alone; the hemispheres act from perceptions and considerations, the sensations which they may receive, serving only as suggesters of these. But what are perceptions but sensations grouped together? and what are considerations but expectations, in the fancy, of sensations which will be felt one way or another according as action takes this course or that? If I step aside on seeing a rattlesnake, from considering how dangerous an animal he is, the mental materials which constitute my prudential reflection are images more or less vivid of the movement of his head, of a sudden pain in my leg, of a state of terror, a swelling of the limb, a chill, delirium, unconsciousness, etc., etc., and the ruin of my hopes. But all these images are constructed out of my past experiences. They are reproductions of what I have felt or witnessed. They are, in short, remote sensations; and the difference between the hemisphereless animal and the whole one may be concisely expressed by saying that the one obeys absent, the other only present, objects.

The hemispheres would then seem to be the seat of memory. Vestiges of past experience must in some way be stored up in them, and must, when aroused by present stimuli, first appear as representations of distant goods and evils; and then must discharge into the appropriate motor channels for warding off the evil and securing the benefits of the good. If we liken the nervous currents to electric currents, we can compare the nervous system, C, below the hemispheres to a direct circuit from sense-organ to muscle along the line S...C...M of Fig. 2 (p. 21). The hemisphere, H, adds the long circuit or loop-line through which the current may pass when for any reason the direct line is not used.

Thus, a tired wayfarer on a hot day throws himself on [p.21] the damp earth beneath a maple-tree. The sensations of delicious rest and coolness pouring themselves through the direct line would naturally discharge into the muscles of complete extension: he would abandon himself to the dangerous repose. But the loop-line being open, part of the current is drafted along it, and awakens rheumatic or catarral reminiscences, which prevail over the instigations of sense, and make the man arise and pursue his way to where he may enjoy his rest more safely. Presently we shall examine the manner in which the hemispheric loop-line may be supposed to serve as a reservoir for such reminiscences as these. Meanwhile I will ask the reader to notice some corollaries of its being such a reservoir.

First, no animal without it can deliberate, pause, postpone, nicely weigh one motive against another, or compare. Prudence, in a word, is for such a creature an impossible virtue. Accordingly we see that nature removes those functions in the exercise of which prudence is a virtue from the lower centres and hands them over to the cerebrum. Wherever a creature has to deal with complex features of the environment, prudence is a virtue. The higher animals have so to deal; and the more complex the features, the higher we call the animals. The fewer of his acts, then, can such an animal perform without the help of the organs in question. In the frog many acts devolve wholly on the lower centres; in the bird fewer; in the rodent fewer still; in the dog very few indeed; and in apes and men hardly any at all.

The advantages of this are obvious. Take the prehension of food as an example and suppose it to be a reflex performance of the lower centres. The animal will be condemned fatally and irresistibly to snap at it whenever presented, no matter what the circumstances may be; he can no more disobey this prompting than water can refuse to boil when a fire is kindled under the pot. His life will again and again pay the forfeit of his gluttony.

[p.22] Exposure to retaliation, to other enemies, to traps, to poisons, to the dangers of repletion, must be regular parts of his existence. His lack of all thought by which to weigh the danger against the attractiveness of the bait, and of all volition to remain hungry a little while longer, is the direct measure of his lowness in the mental scale. And those fishes which, like our cunners and sculpins, are no sooner thrown back from the hook into the water, than they automatically seize the hook again, would soon expiate the degradation of their intelligence by the extinction of their type, did not their exaggerated fecundity atone for their imprudence. Appetite and the acts it prompts have consequently become in all higher vertebrates functions of the cerebrum. They disappear when the physiologist's knife has left the subordinate centres alone in place. The brainless pigeon will starve though left on a corn-heap.

Take again the sexual function. In birds this devolves exclusively upon the hemispheres. When these are shorn away the pigeon pays no attention to the billings and cooings of its mate. And Goltz found that a bitch in heat would excite no emotion in male dogs who had suffered large loss of cerebral tissue. Those who have read Darwin's 'Descent of Man' know what immense importance in the amelioration of the breed in birds this author ascribes to the mere fact of sexual selection. The sexual act is not performed until every condition of circumstance and sentiment is fulfilled, until time, place, and partner all are fit. But in frogs and toads this passion devolves on the lower centres. They show consequently a machine-like obedience to the present incitement of sense, and an almost total exclusion of the power of choice. Copulation occurs per fas aut nefas, occasionally between males, often with dead females, in puddles exposed on the highway, and the male may be cut in two without letting go his hold. Every spring an immense sacrifice of batrachian life takes place from these causes alone.

No one need be told how dependent all human social elevation is upon the prevalence of chastity. Hardly any factor measures more than this the difference between civili-[p.23] zation and barbarism. Physiologically interpreted, chastity means nothing more than the fact that present solicitations of sense are overpowered by suggestions of aesthetic and moral fitness which the circumstances awaken in the cerebrum ; and that upon the inhibitory or permissive influence of these alone action directly depends.

Within the psychic life due to the cerebrum itself the same general distinction obtains, between considerations of the more immediate and considerations of the more remote. In all ages the man whose determinations are swayed by reference to the most distant ends has been held to possess the highest intelligence. The tramp who lives from hour to hour; the bohemian whose engagements are from day to day; the bachelor who builds but for a single life; the father who acts for another generation ; the patriot who thinks of a whole community and many generations; and finally, the philosopher and saint whose cares are for humanity and for eternity,-these range themselves in an unbroken hierarchy, wherein each successive grade results from an increased manifestation of the special form of action by which the cerebral centres are distinguished from all below them.

In the 'loop-line' along which the memories and ideas of the distant are supposed to lie, the action, so far as it is a physical process, must be interpreted after the type of the action in the lower centres. If regarded here as a reflex process, it must be reflex there as well. The current in both places runs out into the muscles only after it has first run in; but whilst the path by which it runs out is determined in the lower centres by reflections few and fixed amongst the cell-arrangements, in the hemispheres the reflections are many and instable. This, it will be seen, is only a difference of degree and not of kind, and does not change the reflex type. The conception of all action as conforming to this type is the fundamental conception of modern nerve-physiology. So much for our general preliminary conception of the nerve-centres! Let us define it more distinctly before we see how well physiological observation will bear it out in detail. [p.24]


Nerve-currents run in through sense-organs, and whilst provoking reflex acts in the lower centres, they arouse ideas in the hemispheres, which either permit the reflexes in question, check them, or substitute others for them. All ideas being in the last resort reminiscences, the question to answer is: How can processes become organized in the hemispheres which correspond to reminiscences in the mind ?[3]

Nothing is easier than to conceive a possible way in which this might be done, provided four assumptions be granted. These assumptions (which after all are inevitable in any event) are:

1) The same cerebral process which, when aroused from without by a sense-organ, gives the perception of an object, will give an idea of the same object when aroused by other cerebral processes from within.

2) If processes 1, 2, 3, 4 have once been aroused together or in immediate succession, any subsequent arousal of any one of them (whether from without or within) will tend to arouse the others in the original order.[This is the so-called law of association.]

3) Every sensorial excitement propagated to a lower centre tends to spread upwards and arouse an idea.

4) Every idea tends ultimately either to produce a movement or to check one which otherwise would be produced.

Suppose now (these assumptions being granted) that we have a baby before us who sees a candle-flame for the first [p. 25] time, and, by virtue of a reflex tendency common in babies of a certain age, extends his hand to grasp it, so that his fingers get burned. So far we have two reflex currents in play: first, from the eye to the extension movement, along the line 1-1-1-1 of Fig. 3; and second, from the finger to the movement of drawing back the hand, along the line 2-2-2-2.

If this were the baby's whole nervous system, and if the reflexes were once for all organic, we should have no alteration in his behavior, no matter how often the experience recurred. The retinal image of the flame would always make the arm shoot forward, the burning of the finger would always send it back. But we know that 'the burnt child dreads the fire,' and that one experience usually protects the fingers forever. The point is to see how the hemispheres may bring this result to pass.

We must complicate our diagram (see Fig. 4). Let the current 1-1, from the eye, discharge upward as well as downward when it reaches the lower centre for vision, and arouse the perceptional process s1 in the hemispheres; let the feeling of the arm's extension also send up a current which leaves a trace of itself, m1; let the burnt finger leave an analogous trace, s2; and let the movement of retraction leave m2. These four processes will now, by virtue of assumption 2), be associated together by the path s1-m1-s2-m2 running from the first to the last, so that if anything touches off s1, ideas of the extension, of the burnt finger, and of the retraction will pass in rapid succession [p.26] through the mind. The effect on the child's conduct when the candle-flame is next presented is easy to imagine. Of course the sight of it arouses the grasping reflex; but it arouses simultaneously the idea thereof, together with that of the consequent pain, and of the final retraction of the hand; and if these cerebral processes prevail in strength over the immediate sensation in the centres below, the last idea will be the cue by which the final action is discharged. The grasping will be arrested in mid-career, the hand drawn back, and the child's fingers saved.

In all this we assume that the hemispheres do not natively couple any particular sense-impression with any special motor discharge. They only register, and preserve traces of, such couplings as are already organized in the reflex centres below. But this brings it inevitably about that, when a chain of experiences has been already registered and the first link is impressed once again from without, the last link will often be awakened in idea long before it can exist in fact. And if this last link were previously coupled with a motion, that motion may now come from the mere ideal suggestion without waiting for the actual impression to arise. Thus an animal with hemispheres acts in anticipation of future things; or, to use our previous formula, he acts from considerations of distant good and ill. If we give the name of partners to the original couplings of impressions with motions in a reflex way, then we may say that the function of the hemispheres is simply to bring about exchanges among the partners. Movement mn, which natively is sensation sn's partner, becomes through the hemispheres the partner of sensation s1, s2 or s3. It is like the great commutating switch-board at a central telephone station. No new elementary process is involved; no impression nor any motion peculiar to the hemispheres; but any number of combinations impossible to the lower machinery taken alone, and an endless consequent increase in the possibilities of behavior on the creature's part.

All this, as a mere scheme,[4] is so clear and so concordant [p.27] with the general look of the facts as almost to impose itself on our belief; but it is anything but clear in detail. The brain-physiology of late years has with great effort sought to work out the paths by which these couplings of sensations with movements take place, both in the hemispheres and in the centres below.

So we must next test our scheme by the facts discovered in this direction. We shall conclude, I think, after taking them all into account, that the scheme probably makes the lower centres too machine-like and the hemispheres not quite machine-like enough, and must consequently be softened down a little. So much I may say in advance. Meanwhile, before plunging into the details which await us, it will somewhat clear our ideas if we contrast the modern way of looking at the matter with the phrenological conception which but lately preceded it.


In a certain sense Gall was the first to seek to explain in detail how the brain could subserve our mental operations. His way of proceeding was only too simple. He took the faculty-psychology as his ultimatum on the mental side, and he made no farther psychological analysis. Wherever he found an individual with some strongly-marked trait of character he examined his head; and if he found the latter prominent in a certain region, he said without more ado that that region was the 'organ' of the trait or faculty in question. The traits were of very diverse constitution, some being simple sensibilities like 'weight' or 'color'; some being instinctive tendencies like 'alimentiveness' or 'amativeness;' and others, again, being complex resultants like 'conscientiousness,' 'individuality.' Phrenology fell promptly into disrepute among scientific men because observation seemed to show that large facul-[p.28] ties and large 'bumps' might fail to coexist; because the scheme of Gall was so vast as hardly to admit of accurate determination at all-who of us can say even of his own brothers whether their perceptions of weight and of time are well developed or not?-because the followers of Gall and Spurzheim were unable to reform these errors in any appreciable degree; and, finally, because the whole analysis of faculties was vague and erroneous from a psychologic point of view. Popular professors of the lore have nevertheless continued to command the admiration of popular audiences; and there seems no doubt that Phrenology, however little it satisfy our scientific curiosity about the functions of different portions of the brain, may still be, in the hands of intelligent practitioners, a useful help in the art of reading character. A hooked nose and a firm jaw are usually signs of practical energy; soft, delicate hands are signs of refined sensibility. Even so may a prominent eye be a sign of power over language, and a bull-neck a sign of sensuality. But the brain behind the eye and neck need no more be the organ of the signified faculty than the jaw is the organ of the will or the hand the organ of refinement. These correlations between mind and body are, however, so frequent that the 'characters' given by phrenologists are often remarkable for knowingness and insight.

Phrenology hardly does more than restate the problem. To answer the question, "Why do I like children?" by saying, "Because you have a large organ of philoprogenitiveness," but renames the phenomenon to be explained. What is my philoprogenitiveness? Of what mental elements does it consist? And how can a part of the brain be its organ? A science of the mind must reduce such complex manifestations as 'philoprogenitiveness' to their elements. A science of the brain must point out the functions of its elements. A science of the relations of mind and brain must show how the elementary ingredients of the former correspond to the elementary functions of the latter. But phrenology, except by occasional coincidence, takes no account of elements at all. Its 'faculties,' as a rule, are fully equipped persons in a particular mental attitude. Take, for example, the 'faculty' of language. It involves [p.29] in reality a host of distinct powers. We must first have images of concrete things and ideas of abstract qualities and relations; we must next have the memory of words and then the capacity so to associate each idea or image with a particular word that, when the word is heard, the idea shall forthwith enter our mind. We must conversely, as soon as the idea arises in our mind, associate with it a mental image of the word, and by means of this image we must innervate our articulatory apparatus so as to reproduce the word as physical sound. To read or to write a language other elements still must be introduced. But it is plain that the faculty of spoken language alone is so complicated as to call into play almost all the elementary powers which the mind possesses, memory, imagination, association, judgment, and volition. A portion of the brain competent to be the adequate seat of such a faculty would needs be an entire brain in miniature,-just as the faculty itself is really a specification of the entire man, a sort of homunculus. Yet just such homunculi are for the most part the phrenological organs. As Lange says:

"We have a parliament of little men together, each of whom, as happens also in a real parliament, possesses but a single idea which he ceaselessly strives to make prevail"-benevolence, firmness, hope, and the rest. "Instead of one soul, phrenology gives us forty, each alone as enigmatic as the full aggregate psychic life can be. Instead of dividing the latter into effective elements, she divides it into personal beings of peculiar character ..'Herr Pastor, sure there be a horse inside,' called out the peasants to X after their spiritual shepherd had spent hours in explaining to them the construction of the locomotive. With a horse inside truly everything becomes clear, even though it be a queer enough sort of horse-the horse itself calls for no explanation! Phrenology takes a start to get beyond the point of view of the ghost-like soul entity, but she ends by populating the whole skull with ghosts of the same order."[5]

Modern Science conceives of the matter in a very different way. Brain and mind alike consist of simple elements, sensory and motor. "All nervous centres," says Dr. Hughlings Jackson,[6] "from the lowest to the very highest (the [p.30] substrata of consciousness), are made up of nothing else than nervous arrangements, representing impressions and movements. . . I do not see of what other materials the brain can be made." Meynert represents the matter similarly when he calls the cortex of the hemispheres the surface of projection for every muscle and every sensitive point of the body. The muscles and the sensitive points are represented each by a cortical point, and the brain is nothing but the sum of all these cortical points, to which, on the mental side, as many ideas correspond. Ideas of sensation, ideas of motion are, on the other hand, the elementary factors out of which the mind is built up by the associationists in psychology. There is a complete parallelism between the two analyses, the same diagram of little dots, circles, or triangles joined by lines symbolizes equally well the cerebral and mental processes : the dots stand for cells or ideas, the lines for fibres or associations. We shall have later to criticise this analysis so far as it relates to the mind; but there is no doubt that it is a most convenient, and has been a most useful, hypothesis, formulating the facts in an extremely natural way.

If, then, we grant that motor and sensory ideas variously associated are the materials of the mind, all we need do to get a complete diagram of the mind's and the brain's relations should be to ascertain which sensory idea corresponds to which sensational surface of projection, and which motor idea to which muscular surface of projection. The associations would then correspond to the fibrous connections between the various surfaces. This distinct cerebral localization of the various elementary sorts of idea has been treated as a 'postulate' by many physiologists (e.g. Munk); and the most stirring controversy in nerve-physiology which the present generation has seen has been the localization-question.


Up to 1870, the opinion which prevailed was that which the experiments of Flourens on pigeons' brains had made plausible, namely, that the different functions of the hemi-[p.31] spheres were not locally separated, but carried on each by the aid of the whole organ. Hitzig in 1870 showed, however, that in a dog's brain highly specialized movements could be produced by electric irritation of determinate regions of the cortex; and Ferrier and Munk, half a dozen years later, seemed to prove, either by irritations or excisions or both, that there were equally determinate regions connected with the senses of sight, touch, hearing, and smell. Munk's special sensorial localizations, however, disagreed with Ferrier's; and Goltz, from his extirpation-experiments, came to a conclusion adverse to strict localization of any kind. The controversy is not yet over. I will not pretend to say anything more of it historically, but give a brief account of the condition in which matters at present stand.

The one thing which is perfectly well established is this, that the 'central' convolutions, on either side of the fissure of Rolando, and (at least in the monkey) the calloso-marginal convolution (which is continuous with them on the mesial surface where one hemisphere is applied against the other), form the region by which all the motor incitations which leave the cortex pass out, on their way to those executive centres in the region of the pons, medulla, and spinal cord from which the muscular contractions are discharged in the last resort. The existence of this so-called 'motor zone' is established by the lines of evidence successively given below:

(1) Cortical Irritations. Electrical currents of small intensity applied to the surface of the said convolutions in dogs, monkeys, and other animals, produce well-defined movements in face, fore-limb, hind-limb, tail, or trunk, according as one point or another of the surface is irritated. These movements affect almost invariably the side opposite to the brain irritations : If the left hemisphere be excited, the movement is of the right leg, side of face, etc. All the objections at first raised against the validity of these experiments have been overcome. The movements are certainly not due to irritations of the base of the brain by the downward spread of the current, for: a) mechanical irritations will produce them, though less easily than electrical; b) shifting the [p.32] electrodes to a point close by on the surface changes the movement in ways quite inexplicable by changed physical conduction of the current; c) if the cortical 'centre' for a certain movement be cut under with a sharp knife but left in situ, although the electric conductivity is physically unaltered by the operation, the physiological conductivity is gone and currents of the same strength no longer produce the movements which they did; d) the time-interval between the application of the electric stimulus to the cortex and the resultant movement is what it would be if the cortex acted physiologically and not merely physically in transmitting the irritation. It is namely a well-known fact that when a nerve-current has to pass through the spinal cord to excite a muscle by reflex action, the time is longer than if it passes directly down the motor nerve: the cells of the cord take a certain time to discharge. Similarly, when a stimulus is applied directly to the cortex the muscle contracts two or three hundredths of a second later than it does when the place on the cortex is cut away and the electrodes are applied to the white fibres below.[7]

(2) Cortical Ablations. When the cortical spot which is found to produce a movement of the fore-leg, in a dog, is excised (see spot 5 in Fig. 5), the leg in question becomes peculiarly affected. At first it seems paralyzed. Soon, however, it is used with the other legs, but badly. The animal does not bear his weight on it, allows it to rest on its dorsal surface, stands with it crossing the other leg, does not remove it if it hangs over the edge of a table, can no longer  'give the paw' at word of command if able to do so before the operation, does not use it for scratching the ground, or holding a bone as formerly, lets it slip out when running on a smooth [p.33] surface or when shaking himself, etc., etc. Sensibility of all kinds seems diminished as well as motility, but of this I shall speak later on. Moreover the dog tends in voluntary movements to swerve towards the side of the brain-lesion instead of going straight forward. All these symptoms gradually decrease, so that even with a very severe brain-lesion the dog may be outwardly indistinguishable from a well dog after eight or ten weeks. Still, a slight chloroformization will reproduce the disturbances, even then. There is a certain appearance of ataxic in-coördination in the movements -the dog lifts his fore-feet high and brings them down with more strength than usual, and yet the trouble is not ordinary lack of co-ordination.

Neither is there paralysis. The strength of whatever movements are made is as great as ever-dogs with extensive destruction of the motor zone can jump as high and bite as hard as ever they did, but they seem less easily moved to do anything with the affected parts. Dr. Loeb, who has studied the motor disturbances of dogs more carefully than any one, conceives of them en masse as effects of an increased inertia in all the processes of innervation towards the side opposed to the lesion. All such movements require an unwonted effort for their execution; and when only the normally usual effort is made they fall behind in effectiveness.[8]

[p.34] Even when the entire motor zone of a dog is removed, there is no permanent paralysis of any part, but only this curious sort of relative inertia when the two sides of the body are compared; and this itself becomes hardly noticeable after a number of weeks have elapsed. Prof Goltz has described a dog whose entire left hemisphere was destroyed, and who retained only a slight motor inertia on the right half of the body. In particular he could use his right paw for holding a bone whilst gnawing it, or for reaching after a piece of meat.

Had he been taught to give his paw before the operations, it would have been curious to see whether that faculty also came back. His tactile sensibility was permanently diminished on the right side.[9] In monkeys a genuine paralysis follows upon ablations of the cortex in the motor region. This paralysis affects parts of the body which vary with the brain-parts removed. The monkey's opposite arm or leg hangs flaccid, or at most takes a small part in associated movements. When the entire region is removed there is a genuine and permanent hemiplegia in which the arm is more affected than the leg; and this is [p.35] followed months later by contracture of the muscles, as in man after inveterate hemiplegia.[10] According to Schaefer and Horsley, the trunk-muscles also become paralyzed after destruction of the marginal convolution on both sides (see Fig. 7). These differences between dogs and monkeys show the danger of drawing general conclusions from experiments done on any one sort of animal. I subjoin the figures given by the last-named authors of the motor regions in the monkey's brain.[11]

In man we are necessarily reduced to the observation post-mortem of cortical ablations produced by accident or disease (tumor, hemorrhage, softening, etc.). What results during life from such conditions is either localized spasm, or palsy of certain muscles of the opposite side. The cortical regions which invariably produce these results are homologous with those which we have just been studying in the dog, cat, ape, etc. Figs. 8 and 9 show the result of [p.36] 169 cases carefully studied by Exner. The parts shaded are regions where lesions produced no motor disturbance. Those left white were, on the contrary, never injured without motor disturbances of some sort.


Where the injury to the cortical substance is profound in man, the paralysis is permanent and is succeeded by muscular rigidity in the paralyzed parts, just as it may be in the monkey. [p.37]

(3) Descending degenerations show the intimate connection of the rolandic regions of the cortex with the motor tracts of the cord. When, either in man or in the lower animals, these regions are destroyed, a peculiar degenerative change known as secondary sclerosis is found to extend downwards through the white fibrous substance of the brain in a perfectly definite manner, affecting certain distinct strands which pass through the inner capsule, crura, and pons, into the anterior pyramids of the medulla oblongata, and from thence (partly crossing to the other side) downwards into the anterior (direct) and lateral (crossed) columns of the spinal cord.

(4) Anatomical proof of the continuity of the rolandic regions with these motor columns of the cord is also clearly given. Flechsig's 'Pyramidenbahn' forms an uninterrupted strand (distinctly traceable in human embryos, before its fibres have acquired their white 'medullary sheath') passing upwards from the pyramids of the medulla, and traversing the internal capsule and corona radiata to the convolutions in question (Fig. 10). None of the inferior gray matter of the brain seems to have any connection with this important fibrous strand. It passes directly from the cortex to the motor arrangements in the cord, depending for its proper nutrition (as the facts of degeneration show) on the influence of the cortical cells, just as motor nerves depend for their nutrition on that of the cells of the spinal cord. Electrical stimulation of this motor strand in any accessible part of its course has been shown in dogs to produce movements analogous to those which excitement of the cortical surface calls forth.

One of the most instructive proofs of motor localization in the cortex is that furnished by the disease now called aphemia, or motor Aphasia. Motor aphasia is neither loss of voice nor paralysis of the tongue or lips. The patient's voice is as strong as ever, and all the innervations of his hypoglossal and facial nerves, except those necessary for speaking, may go on perfectly well. He can laugh and cry, and even sing; but he either is unable to utter any words at all; or a few meaningless stock phrases form his only speech ; or else he speaks incoherently and confusedly, mispronounc-[p.38] ing, misplacing, and misusing his words in various degrees. Sometimes his speech is a mere broth of unintelligible syllables. In cases of pure motor aphasia the patient recognizes his mistakes and suffers acutely from them.

Now whenever a patient dies in such a condition as this, and an examination of his brain is permitted, it is found that [p.39] the lowest frontal gyrus (see Fig. 11) is the seat of injury. Broca first noticed this fact in 1861, and since then the gyrus has gone by the name of Broca's convolution.

The injury in right-handed people is found on the left hemisphere, and in left-handed people on the right hemisphere. Most people, in fact, are left-brained, that is, all their delicate and specialized movements are handed over to the charge of the left hemisphere. The ordinary right-handedness for such movements is only a consequence of that fact, a consequence which shows outwardly on account of that extensive decussation of the fibres whereby most of those from the left hemisphere pass to the right half of the body only. But the left-brainedness might exist in equal measure and not show outwardly. This would happen wherever organs on both sides of the body could be governed by the left hemisphere; and just such a case seems offered by the vocal organs, in that highly delicate and special motor service which we call speech. Either hemisphere can innervate them bilaterally, just as either seems able to innervate bilaterally the muscles of the trunk, ribs, and diaphragm. Of the special movements of speech, how-[p.40] ever, it would appear (from the facts of aphasia) that the left hemisphere in most persons habitually takes exclusive charge. With that hemisphere thrown out of gear, speech is undone; even though the opposite hemisphere still be there for the performance of less specialized acts, such as the various movements required in eating.

It will be noticed that Broca's region is homologous with the parts ascertained to produce movements of the lips, tongue, and larynx when excited by electric currents in apes (cf. Fig. 6, p. 34). The evidence is therefore as complete as it well can be that the motor incitations to these organs leave the brain by the lower frontal region.

Victims of motor aphasia generally have other disorders. One which interests us in this connection has been called agraphia: they have lost the power to write. They can read writing and understand it; but either cannot use the pen at all or make egregious mistakes with it. The seat of the lesion here is less well determined, owing to an insufficient number of good cases to conclude from.[12] There is no doubt, however, that it is (in right-handed people) on the left side, and little doubt that it consists of elements of the hand-and-arm region specialized for that service. The symptom may exist when there is little or no disability in the hand for other uses. If it does not get well, the patient usually educates his right hemisphere, i.e. learns to write with his left hand. In other cases of which we shall say more a few pages later on, the patient can write both spontaneously and at dictation, but cannot read even what he has himself written! All these phenomena are now quite clearly explained by separate brain-centres for the various feelings and movements and tracts for associating these together. But their minute discussion belongs to medicine rather than to general psychology, and I can only use them here to illustrate the principles of motor localization.[13] Under the heads of sight and hearing I shall have a little more to say.

[p.41] The different lines of proof which I have taken up establish conclusively the proposition that all the motor impulses which leave the cortex pass out, in healthy animals, from the convolutions about the fissure of Rolando.

When, however, it comes to defining precisely what is involved in a motor impulse leaving the cortex, things grow more obscure. Does the impulse start independently from the convolutions in question, or does it start elsewhere and merely flow through? And to what particular phase of psychic activity does the activity of these centres correspond? Opinions and authorities here divide; but it will be better, before entering into these deeper aspects of the problem, to cast a glance at the facts which have been made out concerning the relations of the cortex to sight, hearing, and smell.


Ferrier was the first in the field here. He found, when the angular convolution (that lying between the 'intra parietal' and 'external occipital' fissures, and bending round the top of the fissure of Sylvius, in Fig. 6) was excited in the monkey, that movements of the eyes and head as if for vision occurred; and that when it was extirpated, what he supposed to be total and permanent blindness of the opposite eye followed. Munk almost immediately declared total and permanent blindness to follow from destruction of the occipital lobe in monkeys as well as dogs, and said that the angular gyrus had nothing to do with sight, but was only the centre for tactile sensibility of the eyeball. Munk's absolute tone about his observations and his theoretic arrogance have led to his ruin as an authority. But he did two things of permanent value. He was the first to distinguish in these vivisections between sensorial and psychic blindness, and to describe the phenomenon of restitution of the visual function after its first impairment by an operation; and the first to notice the hemiopic character of the visual disturbances which result when only one hemisphere is injured. Sensorial blindness is absolute insensibility to light; psychic blindness is inability to recognize the meaning of the optical impressions, as when we [p.42] see a page of Chinese print but it suggests nothing to us. A hemiopic disturbance of vision is one in which neither retina is affected in its totality, but in which, for example, the left portion of each retina is blind, so that the animal sees nothing situated in space towards its right. Later observations have corroborated this hemiopic character of all the disturbances of sight from injury to a single hemisphere in the higher animals; and the question whether an animal's apparent blindness is sensorial or only psychic has, since Munk's first publications, been the most urgent one to answer, in all observations relative to the function of sight.

Goltz almost simultaneously with Ferrier and Munk reported experiments which led him to deny that the visual function was essentially bound up with any one localized portion of the hemispheres. Other divergent results soon came in from many quarters, so that, without going into the history of the matter any more, I may report the existing state of the case as follows:[14]

In fishes, frogs, and lizards vision persists when the hemispheres are entirely removed. This is admitted for frogs and fishes even by Munk, who denies it for birds.

All of Munk's birds seemed totally blind (blind sensorially) after removal of the hemispheres by his operation. The following of a candle by the head and winking at a threatened blow, which are ordinarily held to prove the retention of crude optical sensations by the lower centres in supposed hemisphereless pigeons, are by Munk ascribed to vestiges of the visual sphere of the cortex left behind by the imperfection of the operation. But Schrader, who operated after Munk and with every apparent guarantee of completeness, found that all his pigeons saw after two or three weeks had elapsed, and the inhibitions resulting from the wound had passed away. They invariably avoided even the slightest obstacles, flew very regularly towards certain perches, etc., differing toto coelo in these respects with certain simply blinded pigeons who were kept with [p.43] them for comparison. They did not pick up food strewn on the ground, however. Schrader found that they would do this if even a small part of the frontal region of the hemispheres was left, and ascribes their non-self-feeding when deprived of their occipital cerebrum not to a visual, but to a motor, defect, a sort of alimentary aphasia.[15]

In presence of such discord as that between Munk and his opponents one must carefully note how differently significant is loss, from preservation, of a function after an operation on the brain. The loss of the function does not necessarily show that it is dependent on the part cut out; but its preservation does show that it is not dependent: and this is true though the loss should be observed ninety-nine times and the preservation only once in a hundred similar excisions. That birds and mammals can be blinded by cortical ablation is undoubted; the only question is, must they be so? Only then can the cortex be certainly called the 'seat of sight.' The blindness may always be due to one of those remote effects of the wound on distant parts, inhibitions, extensions of inflammation,-interferences, in a word,- upon which Brown-Séquard and Goltz have rightly insisted, and the importance of which becomes more manifest every day. Such effects are transient; whereas the symptoms of deprivation (Ausfallserscheinungen, as Goltz calls them) which come from the actual loss of the cut-out region must from the nature of the case be permanent. Blindness in the pigeons, so far as it passes away, cannot possibly be charged to their seat of vision being lost, but only to some influence which temporarily depresses the activity of that seat. The same is true mutatis mutandis of all the other effects of operations, and as we pass to mammals we shall see still more the importance of the remark.

In rabbits loss of the entire cortex seems compatible with the preservation of enough sight to guide the poor animals' movements, and enable them to avoid obstacles. Christiani's observations and discussions seem conclusively [p.44] to have established this, although Munk found that all his animals were made totally blind.[16]

In dogs also Munk found absolute stone-blindness after ablation of the occipital lobes. He went farther and mapped out determinate portions of the cortex thereupon, which he considered correlated with definite segments of the two retinae, so that destruction of given portions of the cortex produces blindness of the retinal centre, top, bottom, or right or left side, of the same or opposite eye. There seems little doubt that this definite correlation is mythological. Other observers, Hitzig, Goltz, Luciani, Loeb, Exner, etc., find, whatever part of the cortex may be ablated on one side, that there usually results a hemiopic disturbance of both eyes, slight and transient when the anterior lobes are the parts attacked, grave when an occipital lobe is the seat of injury, and lasting in proportion to the latter's extent. According to Loeb, the defect is a dimness of vision ('hemiamblyopia') in which (however severe) the centres remain the best seeing portions of the retina, just as they are in normal dogs. The lateral or temporal part of each retina seems to be in exclusive connection with the cortex of its own side. The centre and nasal part of each seems, on the contrary, to be connected with the cortex of the opposite hemispheres. Loeb, who takes broader views than any one, conceives the hemiamblyopia as he conceives the motor disturbances, namely, as the expression of an increased inertia in the whole optical machinery, of which the result is to make the animal respond with greater effort to impressions coming from the half of space opposed to the side of the lesion. If a dog has right hemiamblyopia, say, and two pieces of meat are hung before him at once, he invariably turns first to the one on his left. But if the lesion be a slight one, shaking slightly the piece of meat on his right (this makes of it a stronger stimulus) makes him seize upon it first. If only one piece of meat be offered, he takes it, on whichever side it be.

When both occipital lobes are extensively destroyed total blindness may result. Munk maps out his 'Seh-[p.45] sphäre' definitely, and says that blindness must result when the entire shaded part, marked A, A, in Figs. 12 and 13, is involved in the lesion. Discrepant reports of other observations he explains as due to incomplete ablation.

Luciani, Goltz, and Lannegrace, however, contend that they have made complete bilateral extirpations of Munk's Sehsphäre more than once, and found a sort of crude indiscriminating sight of objects to return in a few weeks.[17] The question whether a dog is blind or not is harder to solve than would at first appear; for simply blinded dogs, in places to which they are accustomed, show little of their loss and avoid all obstacles; whilst dogs whose occipital lobes are gone may run against things frequently and yet see notwithstanding. The best proof that they may see is that which Goltz's dogs furnished: they carefully avoided, as it seemed, strips of sunshine or paper on the floor, as if they were solid obstacles. This no really blind dog would do. Luciani tested his dogs when hungry (a condition which sharpens their attention) by strewing [p.46] pieces of meat and pieces of cork before them. If they went straight at them, they saw; and if they chose the meat and left the cork, they saw discriminatingly. The quarrel is very acrimonious; indeed the subject of localization of functions in the brain seems to have a peculiar effect on the temper of those who cultivate it experimentally. The amount of preserved vision which Goltz and Luciani report seems hardly to be worth considering, on the one hand; and on the other, Munk admits in his penultimate paper that out of 85 dogs he only 'succeeded' 4 times in his operation of producing complete blindness by complete extirpation of his 'Sehsphäre'.[18] The safe conclusion for us is that Luciani's diagram, Fig. 14, represents something like the truth.

The occipital lobes are far more important for vision than any other part of the cortex, so that their complete destruction makes the animal almost blind. As for the crude sensibility to light which may then remain, nothing exact is known either about its nature or its seat.

In the monkey, doctors also disagree. The truth seems, however, to be that the occipital lobes in this animal also are the part connected most intimately with the visual function. The function would seem to go on when very small portions of them are left, for Ferrier found no 'appreciable impairment' of it after almost complete destruction of them on both sides. On the other hand, he found complete and permanent blindness to ensue when they and the angular gyri in addition were destroyed on both sides. Munk, as well as [p.47] Brown and Schaefer, found no disturbance of sight from destroying the angular gyri alone, although Ferrier found blindness to ensue. This blindness was probably due to inhibitions exerted in distans, or to cutting of the white optical fibres passing under the angular gyri on their way to the occipital lobes. Brown and Schaefer got complete and permanent blindness in one monkey from total destruction of both occipital lobes. Luciani and Seppili, performing this operation on two monkeys, found that the animals were only mentally, not sensorially, blind. After some weeks they saw their food, but could not distinguish by sight between figs and pieces of cork. Luciani and Seppili seem, however, not to have extirpated the entire lobes. When one lobe only is injured the affection of sight is hemiopic in monkeys: in this all observers agree. On the whole, then, Munk's original location of vision in the occipital lobes is confirmed by the later evidence.[19]

In man we have more exact results, since we are not driven to interpret the vision from the outward conduct. On the other hand, however, we cannot vivisect, but must wait for pathological lesions to turn up. The pathologists who have discussed these (the literature is tedious ad libitum) conclude that the occipital lobes are the indispensable part for vision in man. Hemiopic disturbance in both eyes comes from lesion of either one of them, and total blindness, sensorial as well as psychic, from destruction of both.

Hemiopia may also result from lesion in other parts, especially the neighboring angular and supra-marginal gyri, and it may accompany extensive injury in the motor region of the cortex. In these cases it seems probable that it is due to an actio in distans, probably to the interruption of [p.48] fibres proceeding from the occipital lobe. There seem to be a few cases on record where there was injury to the occipital lobes without visual defect. Ferrier has collected as many as possible to prove his localization in the angular gyrus.[20] A strict application of logical principles would make one of these cases outweigh one hundred contrary ones. And yet, remembering how imperfect observations may be, and how individual brains may vary, it would certainly be rash for their sake to throw away the enormous amount of positive evidence for the occipital lobes. Individual variability is always a possible explanation of an anomalous case. There is no more prominent anatomical fact than that of the 'decussation of the pyramids,' nor any more usual pathological fact than its consequence, that left-handed hemorrhages into the motor region produce right-handed paralyses. And yet the decussation is variable in amount, and seems sometimes to be absent altogether.[21] If, in such a case as this last, the left brain were to become the seat of apoplexy, the left and not the right half of the body would be the one to suffer paralysis.

The schema on the opposite page, copied from Dr.Seguin, expresses, on the whole, the probable truth about the regions concerned in vision. Not the entire occipital lobes, but the so-called cunei, and the first convolutions, are the cortical parts most intimately concerned. Nothnagel agrees with Seguin in this limitation of the essential tracts.[22]

A most interesting effect of cortical disorder is mental blindness. This consists not so much in insensibility to optical impressions, as in inability to understand them. Psychologically it is interpretable as loss of associations between optical sensations and what they signify; and any interruption of the paths between the optic centres and the centres for other ideas ought to bring it about. Thus,[p.49] printed letters of the alphabet, or words, signify certain sounds and certain articulatory movements. If the connection between the articulating or auditory centres, on the one hand, and the visual centres on the other, be ruptured, we ought a priori to expect that the sight of words would fail to awaken the idea of their sound, or the movement for pronouncing them.

We ought, in short, to have alexia, or inability to read: and this is just what we do have in many [p.50] cases of extensive injury about the fronto-temporal regions, as a complication of aphasic disease. Nothnagel suggests that whilst the cuneus is the seat of optical sensations, the other parts of the occipital lobe may be the field of optical memories and ideas, from the loss of which mental blindness should ensue. In fact, all the medical authors speak of mental blindness as if it must consist in the loss of visual images from the memory. It seems to me, however, that this is a psychological misapprehension. A man whose power of visual imagination has decayed (no unusual phenomenon in its lighter grades) is not mentally blind in the least, for he recognizes perfectly all that he sees. On the other hand, he may be mentally blind, with his optical imagination well preserved; as in the interesting case publislied by Wilbrand in 1887.[23] In the still more interesting case of mental blindness recently published by Lissauer,[24] though the patient made the most ludicrous mistakes, calling for instance a clothes-brush a pair of spectacles, an umbrella a plant with flowers, an apple a portrait of a lady, etc. etc., he seemed, according to the reporter, to have his mental images fairly well preserved. It is in fact the momentary loss of our non-optical images which makes us mentally blind, just as it is that of our non-auditory images which makes us mentally deaf. I am mentally deaf if, hearing a bell, I can't recall how it looks; and mentally blind if, seeing it, I can't recall its sound or its name. As a matter of fact, I should have to be not merely mentally blind, but stone-blind, if all my visual images were lost. For although I am blind to the right half of the field of view if my left occipital region is injured, and to the left half if my right region is injured, such hemianopsia does not deprive me of visual images, experience seeming to show that the unaffected hemisphere is always sufficient for production of these. To abolish them entirely I should have to be deprived of both occipital lobes, and that would deprive me not only of my inward images of sight, but of my [p.51] sight altogether.[25] Recent pathological annals seem to offer a few such cases.[26] Meanwhile there are a number of cases of mental blindness, especially for written language, coupled with hemianopsia, usually of the rightward field of view. These are all explicable by the breaking down, through disease, of the connecting tracts between the occipital lobes and other parts of the brain, especially those which go to the centres for speech in the frontal and temporal regions of the left hemisphere. They are to be classed among disturbances of conduction or of association; and nowhere can I find any fact which should force us to believe that optical images need[27] be lost in mental blindness, or that the cerebral centres for such images are locally distinct from those for direct sensations from the eyes.[28]

Where an object fails to be recognized by sight, it often happens that the patient will recognize and name it as soon as he touches it with his hand. This shows in an interes-[p.52] ting way how numerous the associative paths are which all end by running out of the brain through the channel of speech. The hand-path is open, though the eye-path be closed. When mental blindness is most complete, neither sight, touch, nor sound avails to steer the patient, and a sort of dementia which has been called asymbolia or apraxia is the result. The commonest articles are not understood. The patient will put his breeches on one shoulder and his hat upon the other, will bite into the soap and lay his shoes on the table, or take his food into his hand and throw it down again, not knowing what to do with it, etc. Such disorder can only come from extensive brain-injury.[29]

The method of degeneration corroborates the other evidence localizing the tracts of vision. In young animals one gets secondary degeneration of the occipital regions from destroying an eyeball, and, vice versa, degeneration of the optic nerves from destroying the occipital regions. The corpora geniculata, thalami, and subcortical fibres leading to the occipital lobes are also found atrophied in these cases. The phenomena are not uniform, but are indisputable;[30] so that, taking all lines of evidence together, the special connection of vision with the occipital lobes is perfectly made out. It should be added that the occipital lobes have frequently been found shrunken in cases of inveterate blindness in man.


Hearing is hardly as definitely localized as sight. In the dog, Luciani's diagram will show the regions which directly or indirectly affect it for the worse when injured. As with sight, one-sided lesions produce symptoms on both sides. The mixture of black dots and gray dots in the diagram is meant to represent this mixture of 'crossed' and 'uncrossed' connections, though of course no topographical exactitude is aimed at. Of all the region, the temporal lobe is the most important part; yet permanent absolute deafness did not [p.53] result in a dog of Luciani's, even from bilateral destruction of both temporal lobes in their entirety.[31]

In the monkey, Ferrier and Yeo once found permanent deafness to follow destruction of the upper temporal convolution (the one just below the fissure of Sylvius in Fig.6) on both sides. Brown and Schaefer found, on the contrary, that in several monkeys this operation failed to noticeably affect the hearing. In one animal, indeed, both entire temporal lobes were destroyed. After a week or two of depression of the mental faculties this beast recovered and became one of the brightest monkeys possible, domineering over all his mates, and admitted by all who saw him to have all his senses, including hearing, 'perfectly acute.'[32] Terrible recriminations have, as usual, ensued between the investigators, Ferrier denying that Brown and Schaefer's ablations were complete,[33] Schaefer that Ferrier's monkey was really deaf.[34] In this unsatisfactory condition the subject must be left, although there seems no reason to doubt that Brown and Schaefer's observation is the more important of the two.

In man the temporal lobe is unquestionably, the seat of the hearing function, and the superior convolution adjacent to the sylvian fissure is its most important part. The phenomena of aphasia show this. We studied motor aphasia a few pages back; we must now consider sensory aphasia.[p.54]

Our knowledge of this disease has had three stages: we may talk of the period of Broca, the period of Wernicke, and the period of Charcot. What Broca's discovery was we have seen. Wernicke was the first to discriminate those cases in which the patient can not even understand speech from those in which he can understand, only not talk; and to ascribe the former condition to lesion of the temporal lobe.[35] The condition in question is word-deafness, and the disease is auditory aphasia. The latest statistical survey of the subject is that by Dr. Allen Starr.[36] In the seven cases of pure word-deafness which he has collected, cases in which the patient could read, talk, and write, but not understand what was said to him, the lesion was limited to the first and second temporal convolutions in their posterior two thirds. The lesion (in right-handed, i.e. left-brained, persons) is always on the left side, like the lesion in motor aphasia. Crude hearing would not be abolished, even were the left centre for it utterly destroyed ; the right centre would still provide for that. But the linguistic use of hearing appears bound up with the integrity of the left centre more or less exclusively. Here it must be that words heard enter into association with the things which they represent, on the one hand, and with the movements necessary for pronouncing them, on the other. In a large majority of Dr. Starr's fifty cases, the power either to name objects or to talk coherently was impaired. This shows that in most of us (as Wernicke said) speech must go on from auditory cues; that is, it must be that our ideas do not innervate our motor centres directly, but only after first arousing the mental sound of the words. This is the immediate stimulus to articulation; and where the possibility of this is abolished by the destruction of its usual channel in the left temporal lobe, the articulation must suffer. In the few cases in which the channel is abolished with no bad effect on speech we must suppose an idiosyncrasy. The patient must innervate his speech-organs either from the corresponding portion of the other hemisphere or directly from the centres of ideation, [p.55] those, namely, of vision, touch, etc., without leaning on the auditory region. It is the minuter analysis of the facts in the light of such individual differences as these which constitutes Charcot's contribution towards clearing up the subject.

Every namable thing, act, or relation has numerous properties, qualities, or aspects. In our minds the properties of each thing, together with its name, form an associated group. If different parts of the brain are severally concerned with the several properties, and a farther part with the hearing, and still another with the uttering, of the name, there must inevitably be brought about (through the law of association which we shall later study) such a dynamic connection amongst all these brain-parts that the activity of anyone of them will be likely to awaken the activity of all the rest. When we are talking as we think, the ultimate process is that of utterance. If the brain-part for that be injured, speech is impossible or disorderly, even though all the other brain-parts be intact: and this is just the condition of things which, on page 37, we found to be brought about by limited lesion of the left inferior frontal convolution. But back of that last act various orders of succession are possible in the associations of a talking man's ideas. The more usual order seems to be from the tactile, visual, or other properties of the things thought-about to the sound of their names, and then to the latter's utterance. But if in a certain individual the thought of the look of an object or of the look of its printed name be the process which habitually precedes articulation, then the loss of the hearing centre will pro tanto not affect that individual's speech. He will be mentally deaf, i.e. his understanding of speech will suffer, but he will not be aphasic. In this way it is possible to explain the seven cases of pure word-deafness which figure in Dr. Starr's table.

If this order of association be ingrained and habitual in that individual, injury to his visual centres will make him not only word-blind, but aphasic as well. His speech will become confused in consequence of an occipital lesion. Naunyn, consequently, plotting out on a diagram of the hemisphere the 71 irreproachably reported cases of [p.56] aphasia which he was able to collect, finds that the lesions concentrate themselves in three places: first, on Broca's, centre; second, on Wernicke's ; third, on the supra-marginal and angular gyri under which those fibres pass which connect the visual centres with the rest of the brain [37](see Fig. 17). With this result Dr. Starr's analysis of purely sensory cases agrees.

In a later chapter we shall again return to these differences in the effectiveness of the sensory spheres in different individuals. Meanwhile few things show more beautifully than the history of our knowledge of aphasia how the sagacity and patience of many banded workers are in time certain to analyze the darkest confusion into an orderly display.[38] There is no 'centre of Speech' in the brain any more than there is a faculty of Speech in the mind. The entire brain, more or less, is at work in a man who uses language. The subjoined diagram, from Ross, shows the four parts most critically concerned, and, in the light of our text, needs no farther explanation (see Fig. 18).[p.57]


Everything conspires to point to the median descending part of the temporal lobes as being the organs of smell. Even Ferrier and Munk agree on the hippocampal gyrus, though Ferrier restricts olfaction, as Munk does not to the lobule or uncinate process of the convolution, reserving the rest of it for touch.

Anatomy and pathology also point to the hippocampal gyrus; but as the matter is less interesting from the point of view of human psychology than were sight and hearing, I will say no more, but simply add Luciani and Seppili's diagram of the dog's smell-centre.[39]


Of [p.58] we know little that is definite.[sic] What little there is points to the lower temporal regions again. Consult Ferrier as below.


Interesting problems arise with regard to the seat of tactile and muscular sensibility. Hitzig, whose experiments on dogs' brains fifteen years ago opened the entire subject which we are discussing, ascribed the disorders of motility observed after ablations of the motor region to a loss of what he called muscular consciousness.

The animals do not notice eccentric positions of their limbs, will stand with their legs crossed, with the affected paw resting on its back or hanging over a table's edge, etc.; and do not resist our bending and stretching of it as they resist with the unaffected paw. Goltz, Munk, Schiff, Herzen, and others promptly ascertained an equal defect of cutaneous sensibility to pain, touch, and cold. The paw is not withdrawn when pinched, remains standing in cold water, etc. Ferrier meanwhile denied that there was any true anaesthesia produced by ablations in the motor zone, and explains the appearance of it as an effect of the sluggish motor responses of the affected side.[40] Munk [41]and Schiff [42], on the [p.59] contrary, conceive of the 'motor zone' as essentially sensory, and in different ways explain the motor disorders as secondary results of the anaesthesia which is always there. Munk calls the motor zone the Fühlsphäre of the animal's limbs, etc., and makes it coördinate with the Sehsphäre, the Hörsphäre, etc., the entire cortex being, according to him, nothing but a projection-surface for sensations, with no exclusively or essentially motor part. Such a view would be important if true, through its bearings on the psychology of volition. What is the truth? As regards the fact of cutaneous anaesthesia from motor-zone ablations, all other observers are against Ferrier, so that he is probably wrong in denying it. On the other hand, Munk and Schiff are wrong in making the motor symptoms depend on the anaesthesia, for in certain rare cases they have been observed to exist not only without insensibility, but with actual hyperaesthesia of the parts.[43] The motor and sensory symptoms seem, therefore, to be independent variables.

In monkeys the latest experiments are those of Horsley and Schaefer,[44] whose results Ferrier accepts. They find that excision of the hippocampal convolution produces transient insensibility of the opposite side of the body, and that permanent insensibility is produced by destruction of its continuation upwards above the corpus callosum, the so-called gyrus fornicatus (the part just below the 'calloso-marginal fissure' in Fig.7). The insensibility is at its maximum when the entire tract comprising both convolutions is destroyed. Ferrier says that the sensibility of monkeys is 'entirely unaffected' by ablations of the motor zone,[45] and Horsley and Schaefer consider it by no means necessarily [p.60] abolished.[46] Luciani found it diminished in his three experiments on apes.[47] In man we have the fact that one-sided paralysis from disease of the opposite motor zone may or may not be accompanied with anaesthesia of the parts.

Luciani, who believes that the motor zone is also sensory, tries to minimize the value of this evidence by pointing to the insufficiency with which patients are examined. He himself believes that in dogs the tactile sphere extends backwards and forwards of the directly excitable region, into the frontal and parietal lobes (see Fig. 20). Nothnagel considers that pathological evidence points in the same direction;[48] and Dr. Mills, carefully reviewing the evidence, adds the gyri fornicatus and hippocampi to the cutaneo-muscular region in man.[49] If one compare Luciani's diagrams together (Figs. 14,16, 19, 20) one will see that the entire parietal region of the dog's skull is common to the four senses of sight, hearing, smell, and touch, including muscular feeling. The corresponding region in the human brain (upper parietal and supra-marginal gyri-see Fig. 17, p.56) seems to be a somewhat similar place of conflux. Optical aphasias and motor and tactile disturbances all result from its injury, especially when that is on the left side.[50] The lower we go in the animal scale the [p.61] less differentiated the functions of the several brain-parts seem to be.[51] It may be that the region in question still represents in ourselves something like this primitive condition, and that the surrounding parts, in adapting themselves more and more to specialized and narrow functions, have left it as a sort of carrefour through which they send currents and converse. That it should be connected with musculo-cutaneous feeling is, however, no reason why the motor zone proper should not be so connected too. And the cases of paralysis from the motor zone with no accompanying anaesthesia may be explicable without denying all sensory function to that region. For, as my colleague Dr.James Putnam informs me, sensibility is always harder to kill than motility, even where we know for a certainty that the lesion affects tracts that are both sensory and motor. Persons whose hand is paralyzed in its movements from compression of arm-nerves during sleep, still feel with their fingers; and they may still feel in their feet when their legs are paralyzed by bruising of the spinal cord. In a similar way, the motor cortex might be sensitive as well as motor, and yet by this greater subtlety (or whatever the peculiarity may be) in the sensory currents, the sensibility might survive an amount of injury there by which the motility was destroyed. Nothnagel considers that there are grounds for supposing the muscular sense to be exclusively connected with the parietal lobe and not with the motor zone. "Disease of this lobe gives pure ataxy without palsy, and of the motor zone pure palsy without loss of muscular sense.[52]" He fails, however, to convince more competent critics than the present writer,[53] so I conclude with them that as yet we have no decisive grounds for locating muscular and cutaneous feeling apart. Much still remains to be learned about the relations between musculo-cutaneous sensibility and the cortex, but one thing is certain: that neither the occipital, the forward frontal, nor the temporal lobes seem to have anything essential to do with it in man.[p.62] It is knit up with the performances of the motor zone and of the convolutions backwards and midwards of them. The reader must remember this conclusion when we come to the chapter on the Will.

I must add a word about the connection of aphasia with the tactile sense. On p.40 I spoke of those cases in which the patient can write but not read his own writing. He cannot read by his eyes ; but he can read by the feeling in his fingers, if he retrace the letters in the air. It is convenient for such a patient to have a pen in hand whilst reading in this way, in order to make the usual feeling of writing more complete.[54] In such a case we must suppose that the path between the optical and the graphic centres remains open, whilst that between the optical and the auditory and articulatory centres is closed. Only thus can we understand how the look of the writing should fail to suggest the sound of the words to the patient's mind, whilst it still suggests the proper movements of graphic imitation. These movements in their turn must of course be felt, and the feeling of them must be associated with the centres for hearing and pronouncing the words. The injury in cases like this where very special combinations fail, whilst others go on as usual, must always be supposed to be of the nature of increased resistance to the passage of certain currents of association. If any of the elements of mental function were destroyed the incapacity would necessarily be much more formidable. A patient who can both read and write with his fingers most likely uses an identical 'graphic' centre, at once sensory and motor, for both operations.

I have now given, as far as the nature of this book will allow, a complete account of the present state of the localization-question. In its main outlines it stands firm, though much has still to be discovered. The anterior frontal lobes, for example, so far as is yet known, have no definite functions. Goltz finds that dogs bereft of them both are incessantly in motion, and excitable by every small stimulus. They are [p.63] irascible and amative in an extraordinary degree, and their sides grow bare with perpetual reflex scratching; but they show no local troubles of either motion or sensibility. In monkeys not even this lack of inhibitory ability is shown, and neither stimulation nor excision of the prefrontal lobes produces any symptoms whatever. One monkey of Horsley and Schaefer's was as tame, and did certain tricks as well, after as before the operation.[55] It is probable that we have about reached the limits of what can be learned about brain-functions from vivisecting inferior animals, and that we must hereafter look more exclusively to human pathology for light. The existence of separate speech and writing centres in the left hemisphere in man; the fact that palsy from cortical injury is so much more complete and enduring in man and the monkey than in dogs; and the farther fact that it seems more difficult to get complete sensorial blindness from cortical ablations in the lower animals than in man, all show that functions get more specially localized as evolution goes on. In birds localization seems hardly to exist, and in rodents it is much less conspicuous than in carnivora. Even for man, however, Munk's way of mapping out the cortex into absolute areas within which only one movement or sensation is represented is surely false. The truth seems to be rather that, although there is a correspondence of certain regions of the brain to certain regions of the body, yet the several parts within each bodily region are represented throughout the whole of the corresponding brain-region like pepper and salt sprinkled from the same caster. This, however, does not prevent each 'part' from having its focus at one spot within the brain-region. The various brain-regions merge into each other in the same mixed way. As Mr.Horsley says: "There are border centres, and the area of representation of the face merges into that for the representation of the upper limb. If there was a focal lesion at that point, you would have the movements of these two parts starting together."[56] [p.64] The accompanying figure from Paneth shows just how the matter stands in the dog.[57]

I am speaking now of localizations breadthwise over the brain-surface. It is conceivable that there might be also localizations depthwise through the cortex. The more superficial cells are smaller, the deepest layer of them is large; and it has been suggested that the superficial cells are sensorial, the deeper ones motor;[58] or that the superficial ones in the motor region are correlated with the extremities of the organs to be moved(fingers, etc.), the deeper ones with the more central segments (wrist, elbow, etc.).[59] It need hardly be said that all such theories are as yet but guesses.

We thus see that the postulate of Meynert and Jackson which we started with on p.30 is on the whole most satisfactorily corroborated by subsequent objective research. The highest centres do probably contain nothing but arrangements for representing impressions and movements, and other arrangements for coupling the activity of these arrangements together.[60] Currents pouring in from the sense-organs first excite some arrangements, [p.65] which in turn excite others, until at last a motor discharge downwards of some sort occurs.

When this is once clearly grasped there remains little ground for keeping up that old controversy about the motor zone, as to whether it is in reality motor or sensitive. The whole cortex, inasmuch as currents run through it, is both. All the currents probably have feelings going with them, and sooner or later bring movements about. In one aspect, then, every centre is afferent, in another efferent, even the motor cells of the spinal cord having these two aspects inseparably conjoined. Marique,[61] and Exner and Paneth[62] have shown that by cutting round a 'motor' centre and so separating it from the influence of the rest of the cortex, the same disorders are produced as by cutting it out, so that really it is only the mouth of the funnel, as it were, through which the stream of innervation, starting from elsewhere, pours;[63] consciousness accompanying the stream, and being mainly of things seen if the stream is strongest occipitally, of things heard if it is strongest temporally, of things felt, etc., if the stream occupies most intensely the 'motor zone.' It seems to me that some broad and vague formulation like this is as much as we can safely venture on in the present state of science; and in subsequent chapters I expect to give confirmatory reasons for my view.


But is the consciousness which accompanies the activity of the cortex the only consciousness that man has? or are his lower centres conscious as well?

This is a difficult question to decide, how difficult one only learns when one discovers that the cortex-consciousness itself of certain objects can be seemingly annihilated in any good hypnotic subject by a bare wave of his opera-[p.66] tor's hand, and yet be proved by circumstantial evidence to exist all the while in a split-off condition, quite as 'ejective'[64] to the rest of the subject's mind as that mind is to the mind of the bystanders.[65] The lower centres themselves may conceivably all the while have a split-off consciousness of their own, similarly ejective to the cortex-consciousness; but whether they have it or not can never be known from merely introspective evidence. Meanwhile the fact that occipital destruction in man may cause a blindness which is apparently absolute (no feeling remaining either of light or dark over one half of the field of view), would lead us to suppose that if our lower optical centres, the corpora quadrigemina, and thalami, do have any consciousness, it is at all events a consciousness which does not mix with that which accompanies the cortical activities, and which has nothing to do with our personal Self. In lower animals this may not be so much the case. The traces of sight found (supra, p. 46) in dogs and monkeys whose occipital lobes were entirely destroyed, may possibly have been due to the fact that the lower centres of these animals saw, and that what they saw was not ejective but objective to the remaining cortex, i.e. it formed part of one and the same inner world with the things which that cortex perceived. It may be, however, that the phenomena were due to the fact that in these animals the cortical 'centres' for vision reach outside of the occipital zone, and that destruction of the latter fails to remove them as completely as in man. This, as we know, is the opinion of the experimenters themselves. For practical purposes, nevertheless, and limiting the meaning of the word consciousness to the personal self of the individual, we can pretty confidently answer the question prefixed to this paragraph by saying that the cortex is the sole organ of consciousness in man.[66] If there [p.67] be any consciousness pertaining to the lower centres, it is a consciousness of which the self knows nothing.


Another problem, not so metaphysical, remains. The most general and striking fact connected with cortical injury is that of the restoration of function. Functions lost at first are after a few days or weeks restored. How are we to understand this restitution ?

Two theories are in the field:

1) Restitution is due to the vicarious action either of the rest of the cortex or of centres lower down, acquiring functions which until then they had not performed;

2) It is due to the remaining centres (whether cortical or 'lower') resuming functions which they had always had, but of which the wound had temporarily inhibited the exercise. This is the view of which Goltz and Brown-Séquard are the most distinguished defenders.

Inhibition is a vera causa, of that there can be no doubt. The pneumogastric nerve inhibits the heart, the splanchnic inhibits the intestinal movements, and the superior laryngeal those of inspiration. The nerve-irritations which may inhibit the contraction of arterioles are innumerable, and reflex actions are often repressed by the simultaneous excitement of other sensory nerves. For all such facts the reader must consult the treatises on physiology. What concerns us here is the inhibition exerted by different parts of the nerve-centres, when irritated, on the activity of distant parts. The flaccidity of a frog from 'shock,' for a minute or so after his medulla oblongata is cut, is an inhibition from the seat of injury which quickly passes away.

What is known as 'surgical shock' (unconsciousness, pallor, dilatation of splanchnic blood-vessels, and general syncope and collapse) in the human subject is an inhibition which lasts a longer time. Goltz, Freusberg, and others, cutting the spinal cord in dogs, proved that there were functions inhibited still longer by the wound, but which reestablished themselves ultimately if the animal was kept alive. The lumbar region of the cord was thus found to contain independent vaso-motor centres, centres for erec-[p.68] tion, for control of the sphincters, etc., which could be excited to activity by tactile stimuli and as readily reinhibited by others simultaneously applied.[67] We may therefore plausibly suppose that the rapid reappearance of motility, vision, etc., after their first disappearance in consequence of a cortical mutilation, is due to the passing off of inhibitions exerted by the irritated surface of the wound. The only question is whether all restorations of function must be explained in this one simple way, or whether some part of them may not be owing to the formation of entirely new paths in the remaining centres, by which they become 'educated' to duties which they did not originally possess. In favor of an indefinite extension of the inhibition theory facts may be cited such as the following: In dogs whose disturbances due to cortical lesion have disappeared, they may in consequence of some inner or outer accident reappear in all their intensity for 24 hours or so and then disappear again.[68] In a dog made half blind by an operation, and then shut up in the dark, vision comes back just as quickly as in other similar dogs whose sight is exercised systematically every day.[69] A dog which has learned to beg before the operation recommences this practice quite spontaneously a week after a double-sided ablation of the motor zone.[70] Occasionally, in a pigeon (or even, it is said, in a dog) we see the disturbances less marked immediately after the operation than they are half an hour later.[71] This would be impossible were they due to the subtraction of the organs which normally carried them on. Moreover the entire drift of recent physiological and pathological speculation is towards enthroning inhibition as an ever-present and indispensable condition of orderly activity. We shall see how great is its importance, in the chapter on the Will. Mr. Charles Mercier considers that no muscular contraction, once begun, would ever stop without it, short of exhaustion [p.69] of the system;[72] and Brown-Séquard has for years been accumulating examples to show how far its influence extends.[73] Under these circumstances it seems as if error might more probably lie in cutailing its sphere too much than in stretching it too far as an explanation of the phenomena following cortical lesion.[74]

On the other hand, if we admit no re-education of centres, we not only fly in the face of an a priori probability, but we find ourselves compelled by facts to suppose an almost incredible number of functions natively lodged in the centres below the thalami or even in those below the corpora quadrigemina. I will consider the a priori objection after first taking a look at the facts which I have in mind. They confront us the moment we ask ourselves just which are the parts which perform the functions abolished by an operation after sufficient time has elapsed for restoration to occur?.

The first observers thought that they must be the corresponding parts of the opposite or intact hemisphere. But as long ago as 1875 Carville and Duret tested this by cutting out the fore-leg-centre on one side, in a dog, and then, after waiting till restitution had occurred, cutting it out on the opposite side as well. Goltz and others have done the same thing.[75] If the opposite side were really the seat of the restored function, the original palsy should have appeared again and been permanent. But it did not appear at all; there appeared only a palsy of the hitherto unaffected side. The next supposition is that the parts surrounding the cut-out region learn vicariously to perform its duties. But here, again, experiment seems to upset the hypothesis, so far as the motor zone goes at least; for we may wait till motility has returned in the affected limb, and then both irritate the [p.70] cortex surrounding the wound without exciting the limb to movement, and ablate it, without bringing back the vanished palsy.[76] It would accordingly seem that the cerebral centres below the cortex must be the seat of the regained activities. But Goltz destroyed a dog's entire left hemisphere, together with the corpus striatum and the thalamus on that side, and kept him alive until a surprisingly small amount of motor and tactile disturbance remained.[77] These centres cannot here have accounted for the restitution. He has even, as it would appear,[78] ablated both the hemispheres of a dog, and kept him alive 51 days, able to walk and stand. The corpora striata and thalami in this dog were also practically gone. In view of such results we seem driven, with M.Francois-Franck,[79] to fall back on the ganglia lower still, or even on the spinal cord as the 'vicarious' organ of which we are in quest. If the abeyance of function between the operation and the restoration was due exclusively to inhiibition, then we must suppose these lowest centres to be in reality extremely accomplished organs. They must always have done what we now find them doing after function is restored, even when the hemispheres were intact. Of course this is conceivably the case; yet it does not seem very plausible. And the a priori considerations which a moment since I said I should urge, make it less plausible still.

For, in the first place, the brain is essentially a place of currents, which run in organized paths. Loss of function can only mean one of two things, either that a current can no longer run in, or that if it runs in, it can no longer run out, by its old path. Either of these inabilities may come from a local ablation; and 'restitution' can then only mean that, in spite of a temporary block, an inrunning current has at last become enabled to flow out by its old path again-e.g., the sound of 'give your paw' discharges after some [p.71] weeks into the same canine muscles into which it used to discharge before the operation. As far as the cortex itself goes, since one of the purposes for which it actually exists is the production of new paths,[80] the only question before us is: Is the formation of these particular 'vicarious' paths too much to expect of its plastic powers? It would certainly be too much to expect that a hemisphere should receive currents from optic fibres whose arriving-place within it is destroyed, or that it should discharge into fibres of the pyramidal strand if their place of exit is broken down. Such lesions as these must be irreparable within that hemisphere. Yet even then, through the other hemisphere, the corpus callosum, and the bilateral connections in the spinal cord, one can imagine some road by which the old muscles might eventually be innervated by the same incoming currents which innervated them before the block. And for all minor interruptions, not involving the arriving-place of the 'cortico-petal' or the place of exit of the 'cortico-fugal' fibres, roundabout paths of some sort through the affected hemisphere itself must exist, for every point of it is, remotely at least, in potential communication with every other point. The normal paths are only paths of least resistance. If they get blocked or cut, paths formerly more resistant become the least resistant paths under the changed conditions. It must never be forgotten that a current that runs in has got to run out somewhere; and if it only once succeeds by accident in striking into its old place of exit again, the thrill of satisfaction which the consciousness connected with the whole residual brain then receives will reinforce and fix the paths of that moment and make them more likely to be struck into again. The resultant feeling that the old habitual act is at last successfully back again, becomes itself a new stimulus which stamps all the existing currents in. It is matter of experience that such feelings of successful achievement do tend to fix in our memory whatever processes have led to them; and we shall have [p.72] a good deal more to say upon the subject when we come to the Chapter on the Will.

My conclusion then is this: that some of the restitution of function (especially where the cortical lesion is not too great) is probably due to genuinely vicarious function on the part of the centres that remain; whilst some of it is due to the passing off of inhibitions. In other words, both the vicarious theory and the inhibition theory are true in their measure. But as for determining that measure, or saying which centres are vicarious, and to what extent they can learn new tricks, that is impossible at present.


And now, after learning all these facts, what are we to think of the child and the candle-flame, and of that scheme which provisionally imposed itself on our acceptance after surveying the actions of the frog? (Cf. pp. 25-6, supra.) It will be remembered that we then considered the lower centres en masse as machines for responding to present sense-impressions exclusively, and the hemispheres as equally exclusive organs of action from inward considerations or ideas; and that, following Meynert, we supposed the hemispheres to have no native tendencies to determinate activity, but to be merely superadded organs for breaking up the various reflexes performed by the lower centres, and combining their motor and sensory elements in novel ways. It will also be remembered that I prophesied that we should be obliged to soften down the sharpness of this distinction after we had completed our survey of the farther facts. The time has now come for that correction to be made.

Wider and completer observations show us both that the lower centres are more spontaneous, and that the hemispheres are more automatic, than the Meynert scheme allows. Schrader's observations in Goltz's Laboratory on hemisphereless frogs[81] and pigeons[82] give an idea quite different from the picture of these creatures which is classically current. Steiner's[83] observations on frogs [p.73] already went a good way in the same direction, showing, for example, that locomotion is a well-developed function of the medulla oblongata. But Schrader, by great care in the operation, and by keeping the frogs a long time alive, found that at least in some of them the spinal cord would produce movements of locomotion when the frog was smartly roused by a poke, and that swimming and croaking could sometimes be performed when nothing above the medulla oblongata remained.[84] Schrader's hemisphereless frogs moved spontaneously, ate flies, buried themselves in the ground, and in short did many things which before his observations were supposed to be impossible unless the hemispheres remained. Steinert[85] and Vulpian have remarked an even greater vivacity in fishes deprived of their hemispheres. Vulpian says of his brainless carps[86] that three days after the operation one of them darted at food and at a knot tied on the end of a string, holding the latter so tight between his jaws that his head was drawn out of water. Later, "they see morsels of white of egg; the moment these sink through the water in front of them, they follow and seize them, sometimes after they are on the bottom, sometimes before they have reached it. In capturing and swallowing this food they execute just the same movements as the intact carps which are in the same aquarium. The only difference is that they seem to see them at less distance, seek them with less impetuosity and less perseverance in all the points of the bottom of the aquarium, but they struggle (so to speak) sometimes with the sound carps to grasp the morsels. It is certain that they do not confound these bits of white of egg with other white bodies, small pebbles for example, which are at the bottom of the water. The same carp which, three days after operation, seized the knot on a piece of string, no longer snaps at it now, but if one brings it near her, she draws away from it by swimming backwards before it comes into contact with [p.74] her mouth."[87] Already on pp.9-10,as the reader may remember, we instanced those adaptations of conduct to new conditions, on the part of the frog's spinal cord and thalami, which led Pfüger and Lewes on the one hand and Goltz on the other to locate in these organs an intelligence akin to that of which the hemispheres are the seat.

When it comes to birds deprived of their hemispheres, the evidence that some of their acts have conscious purpose behind them is quite as persuasive. In pigeons Schrader found that the state of somnolence lasted only three or four days, after which time the birds began indefatigably to walk about the room. They climbed out of boxes in which they were put, jumped over or flew up upon obstacles, and their sight was so perfect that neither in walking nor flying did they ever strike any object in the room. They had also definite ends or purposes, flying straight for more convenient perching places when made uncomfortable by movements imparted to those on which they stood; and of several possible perches they always chose the most convenient. "If we give the dove the choice of a horizontal bar (Reck) or an equally distant table to fly to, she always gives decided preference to the table. Indeed she chooses the table even if it is several meters farther off than the bar or the chair." Placed on the back of a chair, she flies first to the seat and then to the floor, and in general ,"will forsake a high position, although it give her sufficiently firm support, and in order to reach the ground will make use of the environing objects as intermediate goals of flight, showing a perfectly correct judgment of their distance. Although able to fly directly to the ground, she prefers to make the journey in successive stages. . . . Once on the ground, she hardly ever rises spontaneously into the air."[88]

Young rabbits deprived of their hemispheres will stand, run, start at noises, avoid obstacles in their path, and give responsive cries of suffering when hurt. Rats will do the same, and throw themselves moreover into an attitude of defence. Dogs never survive such an operation if performed at once. But Goltz's latest dog, mentioned on p.[p.75] 70, which is said to have been kept alive for fifty-one days after both hemispheres had been removed by a series of ablations and the corpora striata and thalami had softened away, shows how much the mid-brain centres and the cord can do even in the canine species. Taken together, the number of reactions shown to exist in the lower centres by these observations make out a pretty good case for the Meynert scheme, as applied to these lower animals. That scheme demands hemispheres which shall be mere supplements or organs of repetition, and in the light of these observations they obviously are so to a great extent. But the Meynert scheme also demands that the reactions of the lower centres shall all be native, and we are not absolutely sure that some of those which we have been considering may not have been acquired after the injury; and it furthermore demands that they should be machine-like, whereas the expression of some of them makes us doubt whether they may not be guided by an intelligence of low degree.

Even in the lower animals, then, there is reason to soften down that opposition between the hemispheres and the lower centres which the scheme demands. The hemispheres may, it is true, only supplement the lower centres, but the latter resemble the former in nature and have some small amount at least of 'spontaneity' and choice.

But when we come to monkeys and man the scheme well-nigh breaks down altogether; for we find that the hemispheres do not simply repeat voluntarily actions which the lower centres perform as machines. There are many functions which the lower centres cannot by themselves perform at all. When the motor cortex is injured in a man or a monkey genuine paralysis ensues, which in man is incurable, and almost or quite equally so in the ape. Dr. Seguin knew a man with hemi-blindness, from cortical injury, which had persisted unaltered for twenty-three years. 'Traumatic inhibition' cannot possibly account for this. The blindness must have been an 'Ausfallserscheinung,' due to the loss of vision's essential organ. It would seem, then, that in these higher creatures the lower centres must be less adequate than they are farther down in the zoological scale; and that even for certain elementary [p.76] combinations of movement and impression the co-operation of the hemispheres is necessary from the start. Even in birds and dogs the power of eating properly is lost when the frontal lobes are cut off.[89]

The plain truth is that neither in man nor beast are the hemispheres the virgin organs which our scheme called them. So far from being unorganized at birth, they must have native tendencies to reaction of a determinate sort.[90] These are the tendencies which we know as emotions and instincts, and which we must study with some detail in later chapters of this book. Both instincts and emotions are reactions upon special sorts of objects of perception; they depend on the hemispheres; and they are in the first instance reflex, that is, they take place the first time the exciting object is met, are accompanied by no forethought or deliberation, and are irresistible. But they are modifiable to a certain extent by experience, and on later occasions of meeting the exciting object, the instincts expecially have less of the blind impulsive character which they had at first. All this will be explained at some length in Chapter XXIV. Meanwhile we can say that the multiplicity of emotional and instincitive reactions in man, together with his extensive associative power, permit of extensive recouplings of the original sensory and motor partners. The consequences of one instinctive reaction often prove to be the inciters of an opposite reaction, and being suggested on later occasions by the original object, may then suppress the first reaction altogether, just as in the case of the child and the flame. For this education the hemispheres do not need [p.77] to be tabuloe rasoe at first, as the Meynert scheme would have them; and so far from their being educated by the lower centres exclusively, they educate themselves.[91]

We have already noticed the absence of reactions from fear and hunger in the ordinary brainless frog. Schrader gives a striking account of the instinctless condition of his brainless pigeons, active as they were in the way of locomotion and voice. "The hemisphereless animal moves in a world of bodies which ... are all of equal value for him.... He is, to use Goltz's apt expression, impersonal.... Every object is for him only a space-occupying mass, he turns out of his path for an ordinary pigeon no otherwise than for a stone. He may try to climb over both. All authors agree that they never found any difference, whether it was an inanimate body, a cat, a dog, or a bird of prey which came in their pigeon's way. The creature knows neither friends nor enemies, in the thickest company it lives like a hermit. The languishing cooing of the male awakens no more impression than the rattling of the peas, or the call-whistle which in the days before the injury used to make the birds hasten to be fed. Quite as little as the earlier observers have I seen hemisphereless she-birds answer the courting of the male. A hemisphereless male will coo all day long and show distinct signs of sexual excitement, but his activity is without any object, it is entirely indifferent to him whether the she-bird be there or not. If one is placed near him, he leaves her unnoticed.... As the male pays no attention to the female, so she pays none to her young. The brood may follow the mother ceaselessly calling for food, but they might as well ask it from a stone.... The hemi[p.78] sphereless pigeon is in the highest degree tame, and fears man as little as cat or bird of prey."[92]

Putting together now all the facts and reflections which we have been through, it seems to me that we can no longer hold strictly to the Meynert scheme. If anywhere, it will apply to the lowest animals; but in them especially the lower centres seem to have a degree of spontaneity and choice. On the whole, I think that we are driven to substitute for it some such general conception as the following, which allows for zoological differences as we know them, and is vague and elastic enough to receive any number of future discoveries of detail.


All the centres, in all animals, whilst they are in one aspect mechanisms, probably are, or at least once were, organs of consciousness in another, although the consciousness is doubtless much more developed in the hemispheres than it is anywhere else. The consciousness must everywhere prefer some of the sensations which it gets to others; and if it can remember these in their absence, however dimly, they must be its ends of desire. If, moreover, it can identify in memory any motor discharges which may have led to such ends, and associate the latter with them, then these motor discharges themselves may in turn become desired as means. This is the development of will; and its realization must of course be proportional to the possible complication of the consciousness. Even the spinal cord may possibly have some little power of will in this sense, and of effort towards modified behavior in consequence of new experiences of sensibility.[93]

[p.79] All nervous centres have then in the first instance one essential function, that of 'intelligent' action. They feel, prefer one thing to another, and have 'ends.' Like all other organs, however, they evolve from ancestor to descendant, and their evolution takes two directions the lower centres passing downwards into more unhesitating automatism, and the higher ones upwards into larger intellectuality.[94] Thus it may happen that those functions which can safely grow uniform and fatal become least accompanied by mind, and that their organ, the spinal cord, becomes a more and more soulless machine; whilst on the contrary those functions which it benefits the animal to have adapted to delicate environing variations pass more and more to the hemispheres, whose anatomical structure and attendant consciousness grow more and more elaborate as zoological evolution proceeds. In this way it might come about that in man and the monkeys the basal ganglia should do fewer things by themselves than they can do in dogs, fewer in dogs than in rabbits, fewer in rabbits than in hawks,[95] fewer in hawks than in pigeons, fewer in pigeons than in frogs, fewer in frogs than in fishes, and that the hemispheres should correspondingly do more. This passage of functions forward to the ever-enlarging hemispheres would be itself one of the evolutive changes, to be explained like the development of the hemispheres themselves, either by fortunate variation or by inherited effects of use. The reflexes, on this view, upon which the education of our human hemispheres depends, would not be due to the basal ganglia [p.80] alone. They would be tendencies in the hemispheres themselves, modifiable by education, unlike the reflexes of the medulla oblongata, pons, optic lobes and spinal cord. Such cerebral reflexes, if they exist, form a basis quite as good as that which the Meynert scheme offers, for the acquisition of memories and associations which may later result in all sorts of 'changes of partners' in the psychic world. The diagram of the baby and the candle (see page 25) can be re-edited, if need be, as an entirely cortical transaction. The original tendency to touch will be a cortical instinct; the burn will leave an image in another part of the cortex, which, being recalled by association, will inhibit the touching tendency the next time the candle is perceived, and excite the tendency to withdraw-so that the retinal picture will, upon that next time, be coupled with the original motor partner of the pain. We thus get whatever psychological truth the Meynert scheme possesses without entangling ourselves on a dubious anatomy and physiology.

Some such shadowy view of the evolution of the centres, of the relation of consciousness to them, and of the hemispheres to the, other lobes, is, it seems to me, that in which it is safest to indulge. If it has no other advantage, it at any rate makes us realize how enormous are the gaps in our knowledge, the moment we try to cover the facts by any one formula of a general kind.


[1] It should be said that this particular cut commonly proves fatal. The text refers to the rare cases which survive.

[2] I confine myself to the frog for simplicity's sake. In higher animals, especially the ape and man, it would seem as if not only determinate combinations of muscles, but limited groups or even single muscles could be innervated from the hemispheres.

[3] I hope that the reader will take no umbrage at my so mixing the physical and mental, and talking of reflex acts and hemispheres and reminiscences in the same breath, as if they were homogeneous quantities and factors of one causal chain. I have done so deliberately; for although I admit that from the radically physical point of view it is easy to conceive of the chain of events amongst the cells and fibres as complete in itself, and that whilst so conceiving it one need make no mention of ideas,' I yet suspect that point of view of being an unreal abstraction. Reflexes in centres may take place even where accompanying feelings or ideas guide them. In another chapter I shall try to show reasons for not abandoning this common-sense position; meanwhile language lends itself so much more easily to the mixed way of describing , that I will continue to employ the latter. The more radical-minded reader can alway read 'ideational process' for idea'.

[4] I shall call it hereafter for shortness 'the Meynert scheme;' for the child-and-flame example, as well as the whole general notion that the hemispheres are a supernumerary surface for the projection and association of sensations and movements natively coupled in the centres below, is due to Th. Meynert, the Austrian anatomist. For a popular account of his views, see his pamphlet 'Zur Mechanik des Gehirnbaues,' Vienna, 1874. His most recent development of them is embodied in his 'Psychiatry,' a clinical treatise on diseases of the forebrain, translated by B.Sachs, New York, 1885.

[5] Geschichte des Materialismus, 2d ed., II. p 345.

[6] West Riding Asylum Reports, 1876, p. 267.

[7] For a thorough discussion of the various objections, see Ferrier's 'Functions of the Brain,' 2d ed., pp. 227-234, and Franois-Franck's 'Leons sur les Fonctions Motrices du Cerveau'(1887), Leon 31. The most minutely accurate experiments on irritation of cortical points are those of Paneth, in Pflüger's Archiv, vol 37, p. 528.-Recently the skull has been fearlessly opened by surgeons, and operations upon the human brain performed, sometimes with the happiest results. In some of these operations the cortex has been electrically excited for the purpose of more exactly localizing the spot, and the movements first observed in dogs and monkeys have then been verified in men.

[8] J. Loeb: 'Beiträge zur Physiologie des Grosshirns;' Pflüger's Arciv, XXXIX. 293. I simplify the author's statement.

[9] Goltz: Pflüger's Archiv, XLII. 419.

[10] 'Hemiplegia' means one-sided palsy.

[11] Philosophical Transactions, vol. 179, pp. 6, 10(1888). In a later paper (ibid. p. 205) Messrs. Beevor and Horsley go into the localization still more minutely, showing spots from which single muscles or single digits can be made to contract.

[12] Nothnagel und Naunyn : Die Localization in den Gehirnkrankheiten (Wiesbaden, 1887), p.34

[13] An accessible account of the history of our knowledge of motor aphasia is in W.A. Hammond's 'Treatise on the Diseases of the Nervous System,' chapter VII.

[14] The history up to 1885 may be found in A.Christiani: Zur Physiologie des Gehirnes (Berlin, 1885)

[15] Pflüger's Archiv, vol.44, p.176. Munk (Berlin Academy Sitzsungsberichte, 1889, XXXI) returns to the charge, denying the extirpations of Schrader to be complete: "Microscopic portions of the Sehsphäre must remain."

[16] A.Christiani: Zur Physiol. D. Gehirnes (Berlin, 1885), chaps. II, III, IV. H. Munk: Berlin Akad. Stzgsb. 1884, XXIV.

[17] Luciani und Seppili: Die Functions-Localization auf der Grosshirnrinde (Deutsch von Fraenkel), Leipzig, 1886, Dogs M, N, and S. Goltz in Pflüger's Archiv, vol.34, pp. 490-6; vol. 42, p. 454. Cf. also Munk: Berlin Akad. Stzgsb. 1886, VII, VIII, pp. 113-121, and Loeb: Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 39, p. 337.

[18] Berlin Akad. Sitzungsberichte, 1886, VII, VIII, p. 124.

[19] H. Munk: Functionen der Grosshirnrinde (Berlin, 1881), pp. 36-40. Ferrier: Functions, etc., 2d ed., chap. IX, pt. I. Brown and Schaefer: Philos. Transactions, vol. 179, p. 321. Luciani u. Seppili, op. Cit. Pp. 131-138. Lannegrace found traces of sight with both occipital lobes destroyed, and in one monkey even when angular gyri and occipital lobes were destroyed altogether. His paper is in the Archives de Médecine Expérimentale for January and March, 1889. I only know it from the abstract in the Neurologisches Centralblatt, 1889, pp. 108-420. The reporter doubts the evidence of vision in the monkey. It appears to have consisted in avoiding obstacles and in emotional disturbance in the presence of men.

[20] Localization of Cerebral Disease (1878), pp. 117-8.

[21] For cases see Flechsig : Die Leitungsbahnen in Gehirn u. Rückenmark (Leipzig, 1876), pp. 112, 272; Exner's Untersuchungen, etc., p. 83; Ferrier's Localization, etc., p. 11; Francois-Franck's Cerveau Moteur, p. 63, note.

[22] E. C. Seguin: Hemianopsia of Cerebral Origin, in Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, vol. XIII. P. 30. Nothnagel und Naunyn: Ueber die Localization der Gehirnkrankheiten (Wiesbaden, 1887), p. 10.

[23] Die Seelenblindheit, etc., p. 51 ff. The mental blindness was in this woman's case moderate in degree.

[24] Archiv f. Psychiatrie, vol. 21, p. 222.

[25] Nothnagel (loc. cit. p.22) says: "Dies trifft aber nicht zu." He gives, however, no case in support of his opinion that double-sided cortical lesion may make one stone-blind and yet not destroy one's visual images; so that I do not know whether it is an observation of fact or an a priori assumption.

[26] In a case published by C.S. Freund: Archiv f. Psychiatrie, vol. XX, the occipital lobes were injured, but their cortex was not destroyed, on both sides. There was still vision. Cf. pp. 291-5.

[27] I say 'need,' for I do not of course deny the possible coexistence of the two symptoms. Many a brain-lesion might block optical associations and at the same time impair optical imagination, without entirely stopping vision. Such a case seems to have been the remarkable on from Charcot which I shall give rather fully in the chapter on Imagination.

[28] Freund (in the article cited above "Ueber optisched Aphasie und Seelenblindheit') and Bruns ('Ein Fall von Alexie,' etc., in the Neurologisches Centralblatt for 1888, pp. 581, 509) explain their cases by brokendown conduction. Wilbrand, whose painstaking monograph on mental blindness was referred to a moment ago, gives none but a priori reasons for his belief that the optical 'Erinnerungsfeld' must be locally distinct from the Wahrnehmungsfeld (cf. pp. 84, 93). The a priori reasons are really the other way. Mauthner ('Gehirn u. Auge' (1881), p. 487 ff.) tries to show that the 'mental blindness' of Munk's dogs and apes after occipital mutilation was not such, but real dimness of sight. The best case of mental blindness yet reported is that by Lissauer, as below. The reader will also do well to read Bernard: De 1 Aphasie(1881) chap. V; Ballet: Le Langage Intérieur (1886), chap. VIII; and Jas. Ross's little book on Aphasia (1887), p. 74.

[29] For a case see Wernicke's Lehrb. D. Gehirnkrankheiten, vol. II. p. 554(1881).

[30] The latest account of them is the paper Über die optischen Centren u. Bahnen' by von Monakow in the Archiv für Psychiatrie, vol. XX. p. 714.

[31] Die Functions-Localization, etc., Dog X; see also p. 161.

[32] Philos. Trans., vol. 179, p. 312.

[33] Brain, vol. XI. p. 10.

[34] Ibid. p. 147.

[35] Der aphasische Symptomencomplex (1874). See in Fig. 11 the convolution marked WERNICKE.

[36] 'The Pathology of Sensory Aphasia,' 'Brain,' July, 1889.

[37] Nothnagel und Naunyn: op. cit., plates.

[38] Ballet's and Bernard's works cited on p. 51 are the most accessible documents of Charcot's school. Bastian's book on the Brain as an Organ of Mind(last three chapters) is also good.

[39] For details, see Ferrier's 'Functions,' chap, IX. Pt. III, and Chas. K. Mills: Transactions of Congress of American Physicians and Surgeons, 1888, vol. I. p. 278.

[40] Functions of the Brain, chap. X. 14.

[41] Uber die Functionen d. Grosshirnrinde (1881), p. 50.

[42] Lezioni di Fisiologia sperimentale sul sistema nervoso encefalico (1873), p. 527 ff. Also 'Brain,' vol. IX. p. 298.

[43] Bechterew (Pflüger's Archiv., vol. 35, p. 137) found no anaesthesia in a cat with motor symptoms from ablation of sigmoid gyrus. Luciani got hyperaesthesia coexistent with cortical motor defect in a dog, by simultaneously hemisecting the spinal cord (Luciani u. Seppili, op. cit. p. 234). Goltz frequently found hyperaesthesia of the whole body to accompany motor defect after ablation of both frontal lobes, and he once found it after ablating the motor zone (Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 34, p. 471).

[44] Philos. Transactions, vol. 179, p. 20 ff.

[45] Functions, p. 375.

[46] Pp. 15-17.

[47] Luciani u. Sepplili, op. cit. pp. 275-288.

[48] Op. cit. p. 18.

[49] Trans. Of Congress, etc., p. 272.

[50] See Exner's Unters. üb . Localization, plate XXV.

[51] Cf. Ferrier's Functions, etc., chap. IV and chap. X, 6 to 9.

[52] Op. cit. p.17.

[53] E.g. Starr, loc. cit. p. 272; Leyden, Beiträge zur Lehre v. d. Localization im Gehirn(1888), p. 72.

[54] Bernard, op. cit. p. 84.

[55] Philos. Trans., vol. 179, p. 3.

[56] Trans. Of Congress of Am. Phys. And Surg. 1888, vol. I.p. 343. Beevor and Horsley's paper on electric stimulation of the monkey's brain is the most beautiful work yet done for precision. See Phil. Trans., vol. 179, p. 205, especially the plates.

[57] Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 37, p. 523 (1885).

[58] By Luys in his generally preposterous book 'The Brain'; also by Horsley.

[59] C. Mercier: The Nervous System and the Mind, p. 124.

[60] The frontal lobes as yet remain a puzzle. Wundt tries to explain them as an organ of 'apperception' (Grundzüge d. Physiologischen Psychologie, 3d ed., vol. I. p. 233 ff.), but I confess myself unable to apprehend clearly the Wundtian philosophy so far as this word enters into it, so must be contented with this bare reference.- Until quite recently it was common to talk of an 'ideational centre' as of something distinct from the aggregate of other centres. Fortunately this custom is already on the wane.

[61] Rech.Exp. sur le Fonctionnement des Centres Psycho-moteurs(Burssels, 1885).

[62] Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 44, p. 544.

[63] I ought to add, however, that Franois-Franck(Fonctions Motrices, p. 370) got , in two dogs and a cat, a different result from this sort of 'circumvallation.'

[64] For this word, see T.K. Clifford's Lectures and Essays(1879), vol. II p. 72.

[65] See below, Chapter VIII.

[66] Cf. Ferrier's Functions, pp. 120, 147, 414. See also Vulpian: Leons sur la Physiol. Du Syst. Nerveux, p. 548; Luciani u. Seppili, op. cit. pp. 404-5; H. Maudsley: Physiology of Mind (1876), pp. 138 ff., 197 ff., and 241 ff. In G.H. Lewes's Physical Basis of Mind, Problem IV: 'The Reflex Theory,' a very full history of the question is given.

[67] Goltz: Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 8, p. 460; Freusberg: ibid. vol. 10, p. 174.

[68] Goltz: Verrichtungen des Grosshirns. p. 73.

[69] Loeb: Pflüger's Archiv, vol 39, p. 276.

[70] Ibid, p. 289.

[71] Schrader: ibid. vol. 44, p. 218.

[72] The Nervous System and the Mind (1888), chaps. III, VI; also in Brain, vol. XI. p. 361.

[73] Brown-Séquard has given a résumé of his opinions in the Archives de Physiologie for Oct. 1889, 5me, Série, vol. I. p 751.

[74] Goltz first applied the inhibition thoery to the brain in his 'Verrichtungen des Grosshirns,'p. 39 ff. On the general philosophy of Inhibition the reader may consult Brunton's ' Pharmakology and Therapeutics,' p. 154 ff., and also 'Nature,' vol. 27, p. 419 ff.

[75] E.g. Herzen, Herman u. Schwalbe's Jahres-bericht for 1886, Physiol. Abth. P. 38. (Experiments on new-born puppies.)

[76] Franois-Franck: op.cit. p. 382. Results are somewhat contradictory.

[77] Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 42, p. 419.

[78] Neurologisches Centralblatt, 1889, p. 372.

[79] Op. cit. p. 387. See pp. 378 to 388 for a discussion of the whole question. Compare also Wundt's Physiol. Psych., 3d ed., I. 225 ff., and Luciani u. Seppili, pp. 243, 293.

[80] The Chapters on Habit, Association, Memory, and Perception will change our present preliminary conjecture that that is one of its essential uses, into an unshakable conviction.

[81] Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 41, p. 75 (1887).

[82] Ibid., vol. 44, p. 175 (1889).

[83] Untersuchungen über die Physiologie des Froschirns, 1885.

[84] Loc. cit. pp. 80, 82-3. Schrader also found a biting-reflex developed when the medulla oblongata is cut through just behind the cerebellum.

[85] Berlin Akad. Sitzungsberichte for 1886.

[86] Comptes Rendus, vol. 102, p. 90.

[87] Comptes Rendus de l'Acad. D. Sciences, vol. 102, p. 1530

[88] Loc. cit. p. 216.

[89] Goltz: Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 42, p. 447; Schrader : ibid. vol. 44, p. 219 ff. It is possible that this symptom may be an effect of traumatic inhitition however.

[90] A few years ago one of the strongest arguements for the theory that the hemispheres are purely supernumerary was Soltmann's often-quoted observation that in new-born puppies the motor zone of the cortex is not excitable by electricity and only becomes so in the course of a fortnight, presumably after the experiences of the lower centres have educated it to motor duties. Paneth's later observations, however, seem to show that Soltmann may have been misled through overnarcotizing his victims (Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 37, p. 202). In the Neurologisches Centralblatt for 1889, p. 513, Bechterw returns to the subject on Soltmann's side without however, noticing Paneth's work.

[91] Münsterberg (Die Willenshandlung, 1888, p. 134) challenges Meynert's scheme in toto, saying that whilst we have in our personal experience plenty of examples of acts which were at first voluntary becoming secondarily automatic and reflex, we have no conscious record of a single originally reflex act growing voluntary. -As far as conscious record is concerned, we could not possibly have it even if the Meynert scheme were wholly true, for the education of the hemispheres which that scheme postulates must in the nature of things antedate recollection. But it seems to me that Münsterberg's rejection of the scheme may possibly be correct as regards reflexes from the lower centres. Everywhere in this department of psychogenesis we are made to feel how ignorant we really are.

[92] Pflüger's Archiv, vol. 44. p. 230-1.

[93] Naturally, as Schiff long ago pointed out (Lehrb. D. Muskel-u. Nervenphysiologie, 1859, p. 213 ff.), the 'Rückenmarksseele,' if it now exist, can have no higher sense-consciousness, for its incoming currents are solely from the skin. But it may, in its dim way, both feel, prefer, and desire. See, for the view favorable to the text: B.H. Lewes, The Physiology of Common Life(1860), chap. IX. Goltz (Nervencentren des Frosches, 1869, pp. 102-130) thinks that the frog's cord has no adaptive power. This may be the case in such experiments as his, because the beheaded frog's short span of life does not give it time to learn the new tricks asked for. But Rosenthal (Biologisches Centralblatt, vol. IV. p. 247) and Mendelssohn (Berlin Akad. Sitzungsberichte, 1885, p. 107) in their investigations on the simple reflexes of the frog's cord, show that there is some adaptation to new conditions, inasmuch as when usual paths of conduction are interrupted by a cut, new paths are taken. According to Rosenthal, these grow more pervious (i.e. require a smaller stimulus) in proportion as they are more often traversed.

[94] Whether this evolution takes place through the inheritance of habits acquired, or through the preservation of lucky variations, is an alternative which we need not discuss here. We shall consider it in the last chapter in the book. For our present purpose the modus operandi of the evolution makes no difference, provided it be admitted to occur.

[95] See Schrader's Observations, loc. cit.