« AnteriorContinuar »
rupture of the shell; but the embryo, instead of being free, is enveloped in a membrane or deutovum, whence it afterwards issues, first as a larva with a carapace, to be transformed secondly into a larva without carapace, and finally to become a perfect animal. In the embryo, as in the adult, the circulation is supplied by the existence of alternating or amcabean corpuscles, which insinuate themselves among the organs, and are the equivalent of the corpuscles of the blood in other animals. M. Claparède has extended his researches to the parasitic acari of the skins of divers of the Rodentia. He has observed that these minute creatures have organs of attachment analogous but not homologous, a fact which is favorable to the theory of the gradual transformation of species in the sense of Darwin. A parasite of the Mus musculus presents an egg, a deutovum and tritovum, a circumstance hitherto unobserved. According to M. Aloïs Humbert, the analogue of the dentovum occurs in the myriapod Chilognathus. It has been seen also in the Julus, and been named the pupoid body. It exists likewise among the Glomeris, in which, like the egg, it is spherical.
M. Claparède has occupied himself also with another acarus, the Tetranychus of the Linden. It is known that in a great number of articulata, the blastoderm appears around the vitellus without previous segmentation. Now, in the Tetranychus the formation of the blastoderm takes place by the division, repeated many times, of a primitive cellule placed at the surface of the vitellus. The nucleus of the cellule is of doubtful origin; it is probable that it constitutes the germinative vesicle. This cellule should be considered as a vitellus of formation which constitutes a segment at the surface of a vitellus of nutrition. Hence the ovules of the Tetranychus enter into the class of those of which the segmentation is partial (Archives des Sciences, &c., t. xxxi, p. 104.)
Besides these original researches, M. Claparède submitted to us statements of the most striking advances which have been made in zoology and its kindred branches. Thus, he drew our attention to the investigations of M. Stein relative to infusoria, and to this unexpected conclusion, that the bourgeons of the verticelli are but an appearance resulting from the fact that a small individual has become conjoined with another of greater size. He analyzed the publications of M. Semper on the inferior animals which inhabit the coasts of the Philippine islands, and the new work of Dr. Darwin on the modifications experienced by animals in a state of domestication. He acquainted us with the recent observations of M. Parkes on muscular labor, according to which this labor would coincide, not with an oxidation of the tissue of the muscle, but with an augmentation of its volume produced by a more energetic assimilation of the nitrogenized substances with which the blood is supplied. M. Claparède explained (7th November) the ingenious researches of Prof. Max Schultze on the structure of the retina. According to this skillful micrographist, the two sorts of elements which are found unequally distributed in the exterior layer fulfill different functions. The rod-like organizations (bátonnets) serve for the perception of the luminous intensity, while the cones are destined to distinguished colors.
Dr. Henry Dor made known to us that calabarine, the effect of which on the papil is the reverse of that of belladonna, acts as an antidote to strychnine, by paralyzing the muscles which depend on the will without abolishing the latter. It may, therefore, be useful in tetanic affections. The professor last named gave his confirmation (20 April) to the fact, based on the investigations of Cramer and Reynolds, that the part heretofore attributed to the iris in the function of adjustment is completely null
. It is the ciliary muscle alone which is in play. Dr. Julliard the younger has had occasion to study a teratological case very rare in the human species, namely, scironomelia, or a soldering together of the two lower members. He presented to the society two photographs of the monstrosity, the subject of which lived some instants after birth, and gave a description of the anatomical peculiarities of the case.
Our vice-president, Dr. Lombard, read to us (2d April) the results of his sta
tistical researches on the distribution of mortality in certain Swiss cantons, according to the months and seasons. At Geneva, where documents are extant which go back to the 16th century, it is ascertained that the difference from season to season has been but slightly sensible. The winter is the most unfavorable epoch, summer the most salubrious; spring approximates to the rate of winter, autumn to that of summer. Aubonne and Vevay furnish analogous results. In the canton of Neuchâtel winter is the most fatal season for the low country, while spring is most fatal in the mountain region. The same is romarked as regards 43 communes of the canton of Berne. Zurich, the city of Bâle, Thurgovia, Appenzell, show a slight predominance of mortality in spring. In Aargau winter has the highest range of mortality. Everywhere the cases of death are more numerous during the summer in cities, and during the winter in the country. The cold of winter is more homicidal as the altitude is higher; the ratio is reversed for the months of summer and autumn.
Such has been the scientific movement of our society during the year which finishes to-day. The variety of the subjects to which attention has been devoted equals their importance. I may congratulate my colleagues on the part which they have borne with so much zeal, a part which it is not for me to estimate, in the study, always novel and always attractive, of the phenomena of nature. Our cantonal and municipal authorities have recently added their efforts by creating at Geneva a museum, laboratories, and a library on a level with the progress of the age. Let us welcome cordially these new means of study placed at our disposal, and continue with ceaseless ardor to propagate the taste for intellectual pursuits. At the moment of resigning the functions which you have done me the honor to confide to me, I offer you, my highly esteemed and dear colleagues, the expression of my gratitude for the assiduous co-operation by which you have rendered the exercise of those functions as easy as agrewable.
HISTORY OF THE TRANSACTIONS OF THE ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF
PARIS FROM 1865 TO 1867.
By M. PAUL BROCA, GENERAL SECRETARY OF THE SOCIÉTÉ D'ANTHROPOLOGIE, PRO
FESSOR AT THE FACULTÉ DE MÉDICINE DE PARIS.
[Translated by C. A. ALEXANDER for the Smithsonian Institution.*]
When, four years ago, I had the honor of presenting to the society for tho first time the analysis of its labors, I deemed it proper to preface my report by a brief historical exposition, in order to recall the principal phases through which anthropology had passed from its origin up to the epoch at which our society communicated to it a new impulse and direction. It was not at that time, perLaps, superfluous to show how the field of our science, restricted in the beginning to a purely descriptive study of the races of mankind, had become rapidly aggrandized when, renouncing the pretension of depending only on itself, it had contracted a close alliance with all the sciences which throw light on the past as well as present condition of humanity.
It is now nearly a half century since linguistics was called to lend its inyaluable aid to ethnology. That indispensable means of investigation, whose reach extends much beyond the narrow outline of history, has revealed to us unexpected filiations and opened horizons almost without limit. In according it a large share in your labors you have but followed the example of your predecessors. But that which peculiarly pertains to you—that which you have for the first time realized—is the association of our science with geology and palæontology, with prehistoric archæology, with general natural history and zootechny, with medical geography, statistics, public hygiene-in fine, with physiology and medicine itself. To fulfill this gigantic programme, the society has invoked and obtained the co-operation of a great number of savants, differing in the nature of their studies, but all alike emulous of participating in the progress of the science of man. By the side of these, historians, men of letters, artists, philosophers, have taken their place, and by their communications not unfrequently enlightened our discussions. Thus human knowledge, in its most varied forms, finds its representatives among us, and our society is as a living encyclopedia, in which all questions, under every different aspect, may receive immediate consideration by competent minds.
This propitious state of things has, however, given rise to some criticism. Those who regard the objects of anthropology in a different light from ourselves, and who would restrict it to the description of human races, have conceived å fcar lest among so many sciences which it has laid under contribntion it should lose its unity of action, its independence, and, so to speak, its individuality. But it is enough to be present at any of our sessions to see that the ideas which are disengaged from the great variety in our labors always converge in the end towards the same object, and to realize that anthropology, far from being absorbed by the sciences which surround it, is, on the contrary, the common ground on which they meet--the focus which attracts and the bond which connects them. It is like those edifices in conrse of construction for which work.
* Revue des Cours Scientifiques de la France et de l'Étranger. Paris, 1866-'07.
men of every order, from the artisan to the artist, bring together and arrange materials of all kinds—stones hewed or sculptured, exotic marbles, granite, wood, metals. To the apparent confusion of the first stage succeed, after a while, order and harmony; nor is it necessary to wait till the structure is finished tó discover the plan and purpose of the architect. It is in like manner that the collective work of our society is developed; the architect here is an impersonal being, it is the society itself; and all we who respectively represent the numerous sciences summoned to its aid are the workmen, whose zeal it stimulates and whose labors it turns to account.
But the vast variety of subjects which enter into our programme has given birth to prepossessions which manifest themselves at recurring intervals. The necessity of drawing anthropological indications from all sources has been contested by no one; but it has been asked to what point and within what limits the sciences which group themselves around anthropology should be placed under contribution ? Our distinguished colleague, M. Charles Rochet, who first suggested this question, has long studied human types under the artistic point of view. His attention has been particularly directed to the characters of Greek and Roman heads—characters which he has chiefly determined from antique sculptures, without neglecting, however, the testimony of numismatic or ceramic art. But at the moment of communicating to us the results of his curious observations, he has hesitated; he has felt a doubt whether researches of this kind, based on facts which pertain principally to the domain of art, ought to figure in the compass of anthropological investigations, and he has invited the society to state in a general manner the nature of the relations which it regards as established between anthropology properly so called and the conceptions which the latter borrows from different branches of human knowledge. The scruples of our colleague were exaggerated, and the interest with which you have listened since then to his memoir on the type of the Roman head must have satisfied him that they were so. But the general question which he had propounded retains all its importance, and merits your attention the more inasmuch as it was recently reproduced when M. Camus communicated to us the learned researches of M. Fétis on musical systems considered as an ethnological character,
The history of the arts, no more than that of languages, of religions, of letters, or political societies, no more than the sciences called biological, no more than zoology, palæontology, and geology, forms any part of the programme of anthropology. A memoir ex professo on painting or on music would be as little in place here as a communication on the structure of the bones, or a dissertation on the use of the subjunctive. Anatomy, however, furnishes us the best distinctive characters of the human races, and we are obliged incessantly to invoke its aid when we would establish a parallel between the human group and that of the anthropomorphous apes. Nor is linguistics less indispensable when we design to study the filiation of nations and races. Little does it import to us that such a race of sheep furnishes an abundant fleece, that such another affords less wool and produces more flesh; but when the history of these races, of their origin, of their crossings, of their degree of stability, supplies us with ideas more or less precise on the general question of the race or species, anthropology avails itself with eagerness of these facts, which are capable of contributing to the solution of some of its gravest problems. It is thus that we have often seen our learned colleague, M. Sanson, bring his vast knowledge in zootechny to bear, and never without effect, upon our discussions. We could not advance a single step in the study of the prehistoric races if archæology had not first furnished the elements for the distinction of epochs-if it did not indicate to us the relative dates of the inhumations from which we derive the bones submitted to our observation; yet it is evident that the labors proper to pure archæology would divert us from our object. This has been perfectly comprehended by those of our colleagues who, without ceasing to be numbered among our most zealous and active members,
have founded within two years past, under the presidency of M. Leguay, the Parisian Society of Archeology and History. In this younger association, which so many ties connect with our own, archæological facts are set forth in all their details and are discussed for their own sake, while among ourselves the archæological demonstration is, so to speak, but the preliminary of the anthropological facts which result therefrom; and hence it frequently happens that the same researches, without involving useless repetition, present themselves at the same time in both societies under different points of view. This example serves, better than any other, tc evince the nature of the relations of interdependence (solidarité) which exist between anthropology and the sciences grouped around it. It asks from those sciences indications rather than didactic developments, and therefore can afford to exclude none of the branches of human knowledge which are capable of furnishing any ideas on the bistory or the families of mankind.
Under this head I may point to the importance of the researches of M. Fétis, of Brussels, on the origin of musical systems, and their distribution among the different populations, ancient or modern, civilized or barbarian. This venerable savant has devoted a long life to a study which, previously, had barely attracted the attention of a few virtuosi, but which has become in his hands a real science. Accustomed from our infancy to certain musical impressions, we have been led to believe that our classical gamut is the sole form of harmony, that the division of the octave into five tones and two demi-tones is an institution of nature, and that every modulation whose elements do not enter exactly into this division is false, discordant, contrary to the pre-established order of things. This, however, is but an illusion developed by habit. It suffices to hear or to analyze the strains of the nightingale or linnet to perceive that they cannot be expressed on the keys of our pianos, and to be convinced that the purest harmony may exist outside of our musical system. As for this system, we find it everywhere among the nations which have adopted our own form of civilization. The multitude of strangers drawn to the Universal Exhibition at Paris, after having presented during the day the phenomenon of a complete confusion of tongues, constitute but a single people wher, they congregate at night in the saloon of the opera. Amid the diversity of their idioms, the music establishes between them common sensations, and, so to say, a common language; but if the same auditory found itself transported of a sudden into the presence of one of the Chinese orchestras with which our colleague, M. Armand, has lately entertained us, it would suppose that it was listening to a charivari and would stop its ears, much to the scandal of the indigenous spectators, who, for that matter, no more comprehend our musical system than we theirs.
Just as linguistics enables us to establish among the groups of mankind distinctions and approximations, the significance of which may admit of discussion, but whose reality is rigorously demonstrable, so the study of musical systems and of their actual distribution may furnish valuable indications, if not on the filiation of races, at least on the communications which must have existed between them at epochs more or less remote. For this reason alone, the comprehensive researches of M. Fétis would be worthy of your favorable attestation. The documents which he has collected on the music of nearly all modern nations have led him to establish a certain number of great and well-determined groups. But this conception, however interesting it may be, did not satisfy him. He perceived that it was necessary to seek in the study of the past the explanation of the present state of things, and has undertaken a labor which may be compared to that of the linguists who, resuscitating dead languages and even reconstructing primitive ones of which no recollection is retained, have succeeded in casting no obscure light upon prehistoric eras. Not content with recombining all written indications on the music of the ancients, M. Fétis has brought into play the instruments discovered by the archæologists. The flutes, the fragments of the lyre found in the monuments of Egypt or sculptured on Assyrian bas-reliefs,