ON THE FUNCTIONS OF THE BRAIN AND OF EACH OF ITS PARTS: with observations on the possibility of determining the instincts, propensities, and talents, or the moral and intellectual dispositions of men and animals, by the configuration of the brain and head. – Vol. I (out of VI): “On the Origen of The Moral Qualities and Intellectual Faculties of Man, And The Conditions of Their Manifestation.” – François Joseph GALL (translated from the French by Winslow Lewis) (1835)


Volume 9 da coleção: Macknish – The Philosophy of Sleep


He then observed, that his schoolfellows, so gifted, possessed prominent eyes [?]; and he recollected, that his rivals in the first school had been distinguished by the same peculiarity. (…) and, although the connection betwixt the talent and the external sign was not at this time established upon such complete evidence as is requisite for a philosophical conclusion, yet Dr. Gall could not believe that the coincidence of the two circumstances thus observed was entirely accidental.”

By degrees, he conceived himself to have found external characteristics, which indicated a decided disposition for Painting, Music, and the Mechanical Arts. He became acquainted, also, with some individuals remarkable for the determination of their character, and he observed, a particular part of their heads to be very largely developed. (…) Hitherto he had been altogether ignorant of the opinions of Physiologists, touching the brain, and of Metaphysicians respecting the mental faculties, and had simply observed nature. (…) He found that the moral sentiments had, by an almost general consent, been consigned to the thoracic and abdominal viscera; and, that while Pythagoras, Plato, Galen, Haller, and some other Physiologists, placed the sentient soul or intellectual faculties in the brain, Aristotle placed it in the heart, Van Helmont in the stomach, Des Cartes (sic) and his followers in the pineal gland, and Drelincourt and others in the cerebellum.

we were accused of want of will, or deficiency in zeal; but many of us could not, even with the most ardent desire, followed out by the most obstinate efforts, attain in some pursuits even to mediocrity; while in some other points, some of us surpassed our schoolfellows without an effort, and almost, it might be said, without perceiving it ourselves.”

Hitherto he had resorted only to Physiognomical indications, as a means of discovering the functions of the brain. On reflection, however, he was convinced that Physiology was imperfect when separated from Anatomy. (…) In every instance, when an individual, whose head he had observed while alive, happened to die, he used every means to be permitted to examine the brain, and frequently did so; and he found, as a general fact, that on removal of the skull, the brain, covered by the dura mater presented a form corresponding to that which the skull had exhibited in life.”

Dr. Gall was first known as an author by the publication of 2 chapters of an extensive work, entitled <Philosophisch-medicinische Untersuchungen über Natur und Kunst im gesunden und kranken Zustande des Menschen, Wien, 1791.> (…) This paper is a valuable document for the history of the science, and should convince every one that to Gall alone belongs the glory of having discovered the true physiology of the brain.”

And do not blame me for not making use of the language of Kant. I have not made progress enough in my researches to discover the particular organ for sagacity, for depth, for imagination, for the different kinds of judgement, &c.”

After having collected the result of my tedious experiments, I have built up a theory of their laws of relation.

man possesses, besides the animal qualities, the faculty of speech, and unlimited educability, – two inexhaustible sources of knowledge and action.”

Can it be, that there is any merit in the continence of those who are born eunuchs?”

A man like you possesses more than double the quantity of brain in a stupid bigot [intolerante, fanático, idiota, Davi]; and at least 1/6 more than the wisest or the most sagacious elephant.”

in old age, the hearing generally diminishes before the sight; while the taste almost always remains unimpaired.”

Is, then, the form of the skull moulded upon that of the brain?”

Men, unhappily, have such an opinion of themselves that each one believes that I am watching for his head as one of the most important objects of my collection. Nevertheless, I have not been able to collect more than 20 in the space of 3 years, if I except those that I have taken in the hospitals, or in the asylum for idiots. If I had not been supported by a man, who knows how to protect science, and to consult prejudices, by a man justly and universally esteemed for his qualities of mind and for his character, I should not have been able, in spite of all my labors, to collect even a few miserable specimens.

There are those, indeed, who do not wish that even their dogs and monkeys should be placed in my collection after their death. It would be very agreeable to me, however, if persons would send me the heads of animals, of which they have observed well the characters (…) every kind of genius should make me the heir of his head. (…) It would be assuredly dangerous for a [Caspar] Castner¹, a Kant, a Wieland², and other like celebrated men, if the exterminating angel of David were placed under my order; but, with Christian patience, I shall wait the tardy will of Providence.”

¹ Um missionário jesuíta, um dos primeiros antropólogos modernos da China.

² Poeta.

Why has no one preserved, for us, the skulls of Homer, Ovid, Virgil, Cicero, Hippocrates, Boerhaave, Alexander, Frederic, Joseph II, Catharine (sic), Voltaire, Rousseau, Locke, Bacon, and of others? – what ornaments for the beautiful temples of the muses!”

Here I imagine that I am a Jupiter, who beholds from the heavens his animal kingdom crowding upon the earth. Think a little of the immense space which I am going to pass through: — from the zoophyte, to the simple polypus, up to the philosopher and the theosophist? I shall hazard, like you, gentlemen poets, some perilous leaps. (…) I create insects, birds, fishes, mammalia. I make lap-dogs for your ladies, and horses for your beaux; and for myself, men, that is to say, fools and philosophers, poets and historians, theologians and naturalists. I end, then, with man, as Moses told you long before”

lasting peace among men will be always but a dream.”

Of the difference between the Heads of Men and Women. That which I could say on this subject must remain entre nous. We know very well that the heads of the women are difficult to unravel.”

I rather think that the wise men have baptized the child before it was born; they call me craniologist, and the science which I discovered, craniology; but, in the first place, all learned words displease me; next, this is not one applicable to my profession, nor one which really designates it.”

I admit no exceptions in the works of nature.”

I remark I have not sufficiently appreciated the a priori, that is to say, the philosophy which is to be founded upon the a piori. I have had the weakness in this, to judge others by myself (…) It was always difficult for me to reason soundly upon the experiments which I make, as well as upon those made by others, although I am persuaded that I can collect truths only on the highway of experience. It is possible, nevertheless, very possible, that others have a more favorable organization than I have to arrive at knowedge (sic) a priori

Having continued his lectures for 5 years, on the 9th of January, 1802, the Austrian Government issued an order that they should cease; his doctrine being considered dangerous to religion. (…) the prohibition strongly stimulated curiosity, and all publications on the subject continued to be permitted, provided they abstained from reflecting on the Government for issuing the <general order.>”

Conferenciou com o dr. Spurzheim, seu ex-aluno, por 35 cidades européias, a maioria na Alemanha. Acabou por se fixar em Paris 2 anos depois.

In these travels I experienced every where the most flattering reception. Sovereigns, ministers, philosophers, legislators, artists seconded my design on all occasions, augmenting my collection, and furnishing me every where with new observations. The circumstances were too favorable to permit me to resist the invitations which came to me from most of the Universities.”

His assertions were supported by a numerous collection of skulls, heads, casts; by a multiplicity of anatomical and physiological facts. Great indeed was the ardor excited among the Parisians, by the presence of the men who, as they supposed, could tell their fortunes by their hea[n]ds. Every one wanted to get a peep at them; every one was anxious to give them a dinner, or supper; and the writer of this article actually saw a list on which an eager candidate was delighted to inscribe himself for a breakfast, distant only 3 months and ½; at which breakfast, he sat a wondering guest.”


M. Cuvier was a man of known talent and acquirements, and his mind was applicable to many branches of science. But what equally distinguished him with the versatility of his understanding, was the suppleness of his opinions. He received the German Doctors with much politeness. He requested them to dissect a brain privately for him and a few of his learned friends; and he attended a course of lectures, given purposely for him and a party of his selection.”

Porém ainda na era napoleônica a Frenologia viria a decair, como na Áustria, como uma inimiga do Estado: “Napoleon was unquestionably a good judge of character and had his favorite rules in deciding upon the motives and designs of men. It was not in his nature to be either ignorant of, or indifferent to, the doctrines of Gall. Conscious of his own superiority, and eminently proud and selfish, it is not to be supposed that he would favor a system which opened to all the origin and nature of human actions. In admitting such a theory as that of Gall, he would himself become a subject of remark and investigation by his own consent; and, however well he might have liked the principles of organology, for his own exclusive use, his spirit could never have sanctioned the practice of them in others.”

Lavater¹, Cagliostro², Mesmer³ have never been to my mind; I felt I cannot tell how much aversion for them, and I took care not to admit any one who kept them among us. All these gentlemen are adroit, speak well, excite that fondness for the marvelous which the vulgar experience, and give an appearance of truth to theories the most false and unfounded. Nature does not reveal herself by external forms. She hides and does not expose her secrets. (…) beyond the influence of natural dispositions and of education, all is system, all is nonsense.”


¹ Escritor, poeta, médico, teólogo e filósofo [!!] alemão (1741-1801). Foi o primeiro a introduzir com mais veemência e otimismo, durante a década de 1770, a idéia de que os estudos fisiognômicos podiam determinar até mesmo as singularidades do caráter do sujeito. Exemplo de obra no campo poético: Pontius Pilatus, oder der Mensch in allen Gestalten. Era famoso por seu temperamento vão; Goethe teria dele se afastado após percebê-lo.

² Ocultista italiano (1743-1795), o principal precursor ideológico do místico mais famoso do séc. XX, o britânico Aleister Crowley.

³ O fundador do Mesmerismo, Franz Mesmer viveu de 1734 a 1815. O Mesmerismo descreveria uma força invisível e poderosa que poderia ser resumida como um magnetismo cósmico-animal. Ele viveu para ver sua doutrina ganhar popularidade nos 1780 e morreu antes da decadência do credo (anos 1850). A confusão entre mesmerismo e hipnose decorre do fato de um “discípulo” de Mesmer ter desenvolvido a técnica hipnótica com base no magnetismo animal. Mémoire sur la découverte du magnetisme animal (1779).

That Cuvier was a phrenologist, there can be but little doubt; neither his Report, or any of his works, warrant us in supposing the contrary. Although political causes had a tendency to influence Cuvier against the doctrines of Gall – nevertheless, these 2 celebrated men were made to understand and esteem each other, and, towards the end of their career, they did each other justice. Gall had already one foot in the grave when Cuvier sent him a cranium, <which,> he said, <appeared to him to confirm his doctrine of the physiology of the brain.> But the dying Gall replied to him who brought it, <Carry it back, and tell Cuvier, that my collection only wants one head more, my own, which will soon be placed there as a complete proof of my doctrine.>

His audience amounted to betwixt 200 and 300; and so eagerly was he attended, that many more tickets were applied for at each course, than could be given, and the apartment was regularly crowded half an hour before the lecture began.”

His death gave rise to a succession of eulogisms and attacks in the French newspapers that had scarcely ever been paralleled, and public sentiment was warmly and loudly expressed in his favor. (…) a French friend adds: <Nothing was wanting to his glory; not even the abuse and calumnies of our devots de gazette.>”

The person of Dr. Gall was well developed; he was 5ft. 2’’” Desde quando alguém com 1,57m é alguém “bem-desenvolvido”? “Every part of his head was strikingly developed, measuring, above the eye-brows and at the top of the ears, 22 inches” Lógico.

VIROU PÉLA-SAQUICE: “The organs of Amativeness [?], Philoprogenitiveness [?], Adhesiveness [cara grudento!], Combativeness, and Destructiveness [!!!] were all very well developed in Gall. His Secretiveness was also rather large, but he never made a bad use of it. He was too conscious of his intellectual powers to obtain his ends by cunning or fraud. He was frank and honest, but acute and penetrating.”

[?] Nomenclaturas do também-assaz-idiótico discípulo n. 1, dr. Spurzheim (supra).

I remember as it were now, Dr. Gall opened his large eyes, fixed them on my countenance with a look of surprise and doubt, and then began to feel my brain [Namekian Goku!]. While he was making his observations, he now and then murmured, <Ce n’est pas vrai! Ce n’est pas possible!!> Shortly after having examined my cranium, he said to Bucher, that an individual with a head so well formed could not be of the character he had just mentioned; that on the contrary, unless I was blind and deaf, by the conformation of my cranium, he thought I was able to acquire general knowledge, particularly the languages, and geographical and astronomical sciences. Moreover, that if I had applied according to the development of my organs, I must be a distinguished person and a mad poet. When I heard this last remark, I told Bucher, Ce n’est pas bien! tu as trahi mon secret. I do not wonder at the Doctor’s accuracy. Bucher swore that he had not betrayed me. Gall remonstrated against my suspicion, and assured me of his being totally unacquainted with my trick; but I remained doubtful about the sincerity of both of them, and continued to be an adversary to Gall and his system.


Often when I knew the character of some of my soldiers who died, I sent the skulls to Dr. Gall, and requested his opinion; and I must say that more than once his remarks were truly astonishing; but I persisted in my incredulity. In 1810, one of my lieutenants was killed at the battle of Lintz; he was a Pole of a very violent temper, a bloody duellist, and much addicted to sensuality. I forwarded his skull to Dr. Gall, and in answer to my question, he replied, that it belonged to an individual very violent, ferocious, and a sensualist. This time I was the only depositary of my secret.”

Marquis de Moscati, um marquês que só aparece no Google atrelado a polêmicas anti-frenológicas

It cannot be denied that he was amply paid for his public lectures; that he was unfortunate in soliciting the sale of his work; and that he prosecuted some of his patients who refused to pay their bills.” Esse sujeito realmente tinha um dia de 48h… “it must be considered that in his domestic economy he failed in method, and consequently was always pressed by unforeseen and urgent wants. (…) He educated and supported his nephews, and young people of talents, and his table was free to every body (sic) [ou está falando de dissecações e exumações?].”

If they prosper, it is only by their own efforts; like the oak, they are sustained by their own strength, and it is to their own resources that they would be indebted for all they possess.” G.

G. had lived for some time at Berlin, with the celebrated poet Kotzebue, who profited by the occasion to learn of him the technical terms of his science, and such ideas and principles as he could best turn to ridicule. He composed his play, Craniomania, which was immediately performed at the theatre in Berlin, and G. attended the 1st representation, and laughed as heartily as any of them.”

He forgot the residence of his patients whom he had frequently visited in his carriage, and had considerable difficulty in remembering in what story of the building they lived. He was ignorant of geography, and whenever he looked upon a map he found something new, though he had observed it a thousand times before. So we may be sure, that if he traveled it was not from taste, but with the sole object of propagating his doctrines. If it be true, as we believe it is, that there is an organ of Order, Gall was absolutely destitute of it. The arrangement of his house was a curiosity.”

When I rise from the table, I cannot distinguish either man or woman who sat by my side during the meal.”

In verbal memory, Gall was also deficient. The organ of the sense of language, which gives the talent of philology, was a little better developed. He knew, besides his own, the Latin, and French language, which he wrote and spoke with facility, though defective in pronunciation, and had some knowledge of English and Italian.” Filologia não tem rigorosamente nada a ver com poliglotia!

The sense of the relations of colors, which is one of the fundamental qualities indispensable to the painter, was absolutely wanting in Gall.” “As he was a poor judge of painting, so was he as poor an amateur in music. He generally got wearied at the Opera or Concert; but a woman’s voice in conversation, he said, was very agreeable.” Danadinho…

every kind of numerical calculation fatigued him (…) He knew nothing of geometry. What a contrast to those philosophers who make this same science the basis of all positive knowledge! And so he was in mechanics, architecture and the arts.”

comparative sagacity”

All you Englishmen take me for a bird-catcher; I am sure you feel surprised that I am not somewhat differently made to any of you, and that I should employ my time in talking to birds. Birds, Sir, differ in their dispositions like men; and if they were but of more consequence, the peculiarity of their characters would have been as well delineated. Do you think that these little pets [2 dogs at his feet] possess pride and vanity like man?”

the greatest moral philosopher that Europe has produced”

To that other form of human intelligence, viz. the metaphysical, G. was strongly opposed, when it soars into the spiritual world, and pushes its inquiries into general principles and general truths” Tolo.

Observe his piquant observations [rich rhyme?] on the Editors of the Dictionary of Medical Sciences, in answer to the wish expressed by them that somebody would, at last, devote himself to the physiology of the brain. He exclaims <Behold, an instance of lethargy, in MM. Fournier and Begin, which has lasted from the time of my arrival in Paris, 1807, to the year 1819!>”

Moi, space and time, you know, are the pivots on which the metaphysicians turn much of their reasoning.”

Gall could never make verses. He even detested poetry” Alguma dúvida?

even in Italy – that land of despotism, religious and political – Phrenology has been cultivated with the greatest ardor” Hmmm…

O prospecto da Sociedade Francesa de Frenologia: “On the 22nd of August, every year, the anniversary of the death of Gall, the society holds a general public meeting, in which the general secretary gives an account of the labors of the society, reads notices of the members which it has lost and proclaims the names of those whom it has honored, announcing the prizes which it proposes to bestow.”

* A partir deste ponto, pérolas (que já abundam acima, incolores) serão assinaladas especialmente com esta cor marrom-alaranjada:*

That abstract philosophy, which originating in the East, obtained so great a reputation in Greece, and was supported by so much zeal in the new capital of Egypt, abounded with lofty conceptions, and with the sublime creations of a poetical fancy. But to what did it lead? The unhappy fruits of its popularity were the most intolerant dogmatism, and desolating scepticism; while the system was rendered imposing only by a cloak of mysterious importance thrown over it by the mad enthusiasm of its professors.”

The course which he has pointed out is that which will infallibly continue to wander blindfold amidst error and absurdity.”

What sculptor will not comprehend, that, by means of Phrenology, he may be able at a single glance to obtain a key to individual character?” “The painter cannot too strenuously pursue the study of Phrenology: for he has only an even surface on which to delineate his objects, and he may fail in giving them the necessary expression, by neglecting those traits which, however alight, are characteristic and necessary to bring out the distinguishing peculiarities of his subject.” “From ignorance of these principles, the ancients have, in some of their master-pieces, fallen into errors which are now considered monstrous, such as the extreme smallness of the head of the Venus de Medicis. (…) The ancients, when they concealed the enormous size of the head of Pericles, had the same end in view as the moderns, but were more faithful imitators of nature.”

Venus de Medicis.png Now tell me: do you really think so?


The physician alone by night and day is witness of the most secret events in families, and of their most intimate relations. Virtuous or vicious, the man who suffers and struggles against death can with difficulty conceal from the physician his real character. Who would not wish to have for a friend the man to whom he confides his wife, his children, himself?”

We would recommend the keeping of phrenological journal for every patient; at least, noticing the most prominent developments.”

neglecting the useful example of the ancient sages of Greece, men have separated from each other too far physiology, medicine, education, morals, legislation, instead of appreciating their mutual relations” Oh!



Without a nervous system, there is no mechanical aptitude, no instinct, no propensity, no sentiment, talent, moral quality, or intellectual faculty; no affection, no passion.”

In all animals placed in the scale of living beings above the zoophytes, that is, in all animals properly so called, there exist one or more masses of a gelatinous substance, very vascular, of different color and consistence, which give rise to white threads, called nervous filaments. These filaments unite and form nerves, nervous cords, which go to this or that viscus and there spread themselves. These masses of gelatinous substance, called ganglions or plexuses, these sources of nervous filaments and the nerves formed from them, are more or less numerous, according to the number of parts or viscera with which the animal is provided and for which they are destined.”

Sensation, or organic sensibility without consciousness, is a contradiction in terms, but a contradiction very sagely preserved and professed in our schools.”

Does the fetus and infant, while inclosed in its mother’s womb, enjoy animal life, or a life purely automatic? How ought its destruction to be judged of before the tribunal of sound physiology? Those who maintain that animal life is nothing but a life of relation, an external life, that all our moral qualities and intellectual faculties are the result of impressions on the senses, must necessarily maintain that the fetus and the newly-born infant are still only automata, whose destruction has no relation to an animated being.”

In the cruel alternative of sacrificing the child, or of exposing the mother to almost certain death, the choice cannot be doubtful.” Bichat, o Aborteiro

In the system of Kant, the primitive faculties or functions, pure conceptions and ideas a priori, exist to the number of 25, viz. 2 forms of sensibility, space and time; 12 categories, or pure notions of the understanding, viz. unity (1*), plurality (2*), totality (3*), affirmation (4), negation (5), limitation (6), inherence and subsistence (7*), causality and dependence (8*); society (9); possibility and impossibility (10*); existence and non-existence (11*), necessity and contingence (12*); 8 notions which depend on these, viz. identity, diversity, agreement, contradiction, interior, exterior, matter and form; in fine, 3 forms of reason, consciousness and the soul, God, the universe [? – o excesso de vírgulas do tradutor só me atrapalha!].”

(*) Categorias que Kant (Ou Gall, em uma leitura equivocada? Não tenho condições de afirmar neste momento.) conta, aparentemente de forma bastante arbitrária, como “dualidades unitárias” ou como “unidades trinitárias”, conforme lhe(s) convém; como se não fosse bizarro, anti-didático e distorcido o bastante como base de todo um “sistema crítico da filosofia que se autossuporá atemporal”, vemos como o Dasein estava apenas na infância nesta peculiar regressão ad infinitum no tempo (hehe) que o Ocidente moderno “conseguiu” face aos gregos: o par existência e inexistência (vamos ficar só nesse) é inaceitável. Em síntese, a conta não fecha!

Whether we admit 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 or 7 faculties of the soul, we shall see, in the sequel, that the error is always essentially the same, since all these faculties are mere abstractions. None of the faculties mentioned describes either an instinct, a propensity, a talent, nor any other determinate faculty, moral or intellectual. How are we to explain by sensation in general, by attention, by comparison, by reasoning, by desire, by preference and by freedom the origin and exercise of the principle of propagation; that of the love of offspring, of the instinct of attachment? How explain, by all these generalities, the talents for music, for mechanics, for a sense of the relations of space, for painting, poetry, &tc.?”

God knows where he got this ridiculous vanity.”

she will never be good for anything but a musician.”

The chase is his passion; the more animals he can kill, the happier he is.”

From most ancient to the most modern, they have not made a step further, one than another, in the exact knowledge of the true nature of man, of his inclinations and talents, of the source and motive of his determinations. Hence, there are as many philosophies as pretended philosophers; hence, that vacillation, that uncertainty in our institutions, especially in education and criminal legislation.”

Is it permitted, is it even necessary, to compare man with animals, in order to acquire a complete knowledge of his nature, moral and intellectual?”


As respects taste, I have proved that birds and fishes possess it, as well as the mammifera.” “In treating of the organs of the relations of space, colors, and sounds, I shall again prove that those have been wrong who have attributed the faculty of finding one’s way home from a distance to the sense of smell; that of the talent for painting to the eyes; that of music and language, to the hearing.”

the flow of blood to the ear makes us imagine that we hear the sound of bells”

Buffon¹ says: It is by the touch alone, that we can gain complete and real knowledge: it is this sense which rectifies all the others, whose effects would be only illusions, and produce nothing but error in our minds, if touch did not teach us to judge.

This naturalist is so much prejudiced in favor of the advantages which result to us from touch, that, while speaking of the custom of swathing [envolver] the arms of infants, he expresses himself thus: One man has, perhaps, more mind than another only in consequence of having made, from his early childhood, a greater and prompter use of this sense; and we should do well to leave to the child the free use of its hands from the moment of its birth. Those animals which have hands appear to be most intelligent; monkeys do things so similar to the mechanical actions of men, that they would seem to have the same series of bodily sensations for their cause. All the other animals that have not the use of this organ, can have no very distinct acquaintance with the form of things. We may, also, conjecture that animals, which, like the cuttle fish, polypi, and other insects, have a great number of arms or claws, which they can unite and join, and with which they can seize foreign bodies in different places – that these animals, I say, have an advantage over others, and know and choose much better the things suitable for them; and that, if the hand were divided into an infinity of parts, all equally sensible and flexible, such an organ would be a kind of universal geometry.


The trunk of the elephant is a beautiful example, which will admirably illustrate my position. It is to this single instrument, that this noble animal owes his superiority over all other animals; it is by the possession of it that he seems to hold the middle place between man and brute. What pencil could express all the wonders effected by this sort of universal instrument, better than that of Nature’s painter? (…) he even learns to trace regular characters, with an instrument as small as a pen. (…) The elephant has, therefore, his nose in his hands (…) though this animal be, like all others, deprived of the power of reflecting, still as his sensations are found combined in the organ itself, as they are contemporaneous, and, as it were, indivisible from each other, it is not astonishing, that he should have of himself a species of ideas, and that he should acquire, in a short time, those which it is desired to impart to him.“If birds, notwithstanding the prodigious activity of their nutritive life, have, nevertheless, an intelligence so limited, are so little susceptible of durable attachment and show themselves so little capable of education, do not we find the cause of it in the imperfections of their touch?”

¹ História natural, 5a ed., vol. VI.

It is thus that, thanks to credulity, and the propensity for imitation, the old doctrine of Anaxagoras, which taught that the hand was the cause of human reason, has propagated itself without alteration to our age, which styles itself so enlightened.”

What would your libraries have been without the hands of copyists and compilers? Whatever is marvellous in the history of animals, it is to their trunks, their tails, their antennae, that you are indebted for it.”

Light and sounds strike their respective organs without the will of the animal; whereas he touches nothing without some preliminary exercise of the intellectual faculties.” Bichat

Experience does not show that the mind is always proportionate to the greater or less delicacy of these same senses. Women, for example, whose skin, more delicate than that of man, gives them greater acuteness in the sense of touch, have not more genius than a Voltaire, &c. Homer and Milton were blind at an early age; but what imagination can be stronger and more brilliant? Among those whose sense of hearing is most acute, are any superior to S. Lambert, Saurin, Nivérnois? Those, whose senses of taste and smell are the most exquisite, have they more genius than Diderot, Rousseau, Marmontel, Duclos, &c.? In whatever manner we inquire of experience, she always answers that the greater or less superiority of mind is independent of the greater or less perfection of the organs of the senses.” Helvétius

a stone does not oppress us more than heavy undigested food weights in the stomach”

CONTRA O ANIMAL SOCIAL: “Even at the present time, are not men, in their infancy, more surrounded by animals than by men?”


Eu, meu pai, e os figurantes. Todo mundo odeia o Rafa. Sócrates, filho de artífice e parteira. Santo Agostinho, filho de uma devota passiva e de um herege. Napoleão, camponês. Nietzsche filho de um pastor protestante e de uma arraia-miúda, irmão de uma protonazi. Filhos de grandes personalidades: geralmente fracassados. Filhos de funcionários públicos brasilienses: as exceções são incognoscíveis para seus “iguais”. Criança com motricidade elevada e educação de excelência: boneco inflável. Besta-loira decaída reencontra o seu mito original e o cumpre, aniquilando os mesquinhos valores burgueses. Rodes existe, pode ser provada, mas é uma ilha semovente misteriosa que muda de lugar, talvez um reino quântico. O que se sabe é que assim que saltamos na cidadela, inconscientes, repisamos o chão transfigurados. Através dos valores herdados, sem a ajuda de ninguém, aprendemos, lenta e sòfregamente, a reconhecermo-nos no espelho como a reaparição atávica de heróis de tempos inacessíveis. Tudo de uma forma impressionantemente lógica. Pimba! Conjuração e maldição: vendeta cronológica, tempo bálsamo da alma autoedificante. O filho transfigura o puramente plástico em Verbo e Faz-se. Amadurece, por mais que de forma acelerada, sempre tarde demais… Ou vive cada dia uma nova saga, superando a cada décimo terceiro trabalho todos os doze anteriores… Predestinado, é verdade, pelo próprio anseio, este sim, inato e imorredouro, a se tornar predestinado pelas próprias forças. Nascido campeão, com o gosto de fracasso na boca volta a erguer o cinturão. Lembranças inefáveis… Cada frustração foi vingada com juros. Testemunhas mudas. O que não reduz o brilho do espetáculo… Prazer em repetir situações complicadas… Filho de seus parentes espirituais de séculos amarelados e bolorentos, forasteiro em seu ninho, neopocilga. Indiferente aos dentes da roda do tempo, sempre mastigando suas conquistas inauditas, processo de paciência e placidez bovinas… O superanimal. Ressuscitador voluntário de fantasmas carnívoros. Canibal e fratricida. Usa a doença e a decadência física a seu favor para ser melhor amanhã do que é hoje no esplendor teórico das forças. Distorce as teorias num centrifugador de subpartículas… Ri desse teatro automático, mas quer continuar sendo ator. Misantropóide. Mr. Antropossapiensapiens, apex. Influenciador metadigital. Sem análogos viventes. Seus sonhos-pesadelos o puxam de volta toda noite, recordando os motivos principais do seu temperamento camaleônico… imutável. No cerne. Acelera a própria morte, talvez para abreviar suas chances, tornar o jogo finalmente desafiador outra vez. Sábio até quando pródigo e perdulário, reinicia a máquina em derrocada, reinicia, se formata. Um excelente adestrador de si mesmo. Palha amada, mãerretada. Cabeça. Ombros largos. Pernas finas. A mentira não possui estrias! Peter Pandora.

VOLTANDO AOS SERES TELÚRICOS: “This power so little belongs to man, that even when we are our own absolute masters we cannot escape the changes which the succession of years produces in our moral and intellectual faculties.” “the internal faculties do not announce themselves; they are in a state of indifference; they seize nothing and repulse nothing strongly; and as nothing draws these individuals toward a marked end, they have consequently no determinate vocation. Of this great majority of men it is said, with reason, that man is an imitative animal. Precepts, institutions, discussions, the severe exposition of the most interesting truths have but little power over them. [aka, o fracasso da religião de massa, dos aceitos em comunhão e dos crismados]”

Most great men have manifested their future greatness in their early years.” SÍNDROME DE JOHN LOCKE II: “Achilles, concealed under the robes of Pyrrha, seized a sword from among the gifts which Ulysses [Richard] brought”

DV? “Socrates, Pythagoras, Theophrastes, Demosthenes, Shakespeare, Molière, J.J. Rousseau, were the sons of artisans. These examples, with which history abounds, refute Hobbes, who holds that the difference of talents, or of mental faculties, comes from wealth, power and the condition in which one is born.

We even observe, that, in spite of the most decided opposition, and education, the most hostile to the innate character, nature, when endowed with energy, gains the victory both in the good and the bad. Tacitus justifies the instructors of Nero. This prince was cruel from infancy, and to all the lessons of humanity which his masters gave him he only opposed a heart of brass.” “There is an education for common men; the man of genius has the education which he gives himself, and which consists principally in destroying and effacing that which he has received.”

O Mestre nunca sabe ensinar. Isso é ótimo no caso do aprendiz que será um Mestre melhor; e péssimo, mas inevitável, no caso das buchas de canhão que passam por suas mãos.

Mães idiotas comparam seus filhos com os outros filhos – de modo fatalmente realista. Pais idiotas comparam seus filhos consigo mesmos, mas sempre invertendo o resultado. Ambos os diagnósticos são igualmente insuportáveis para o gênio. O gênio não pode se defender do ataque dos parvenus (o porteiro que se tornou servidor do senado, como se isso representasse bulhufas em seu sistema de valores inexplicável aos progenitores), muito menos das humilhações ou altas expectativas do varão: era para seres ainda maior, muito melhor, porque és superior a mim, mas não vejo isso se concretizando em sinais palpáveis; ou bem, sabes que eu, partindo de muito aquém, atingi muito mais além. E estes causos tão simplificados conseguem resumir a complexidade da história universal dos geniais nascidos em leitos de Procusto; os medíocres formam um capítulo enciclopédico à parte…

and why men who excel in one point are so indifferent in everything else?”

Helvétius himself is forced to confess that education would never have changed Newton into a poet, or Milton into an astronomer.”

Philosophers [Freud!] have recourse to small subterfuges to prove that our propensities and our talents are the result of chance. It is, they say, by insignificant impressions on the infant at the breast, by peculiar examples and events, that sometimes one faculty is determined and sometimes another. (…) Milton would not have written his poem had he not lost his place of secretary to Cromwell. (…) [But] how many secretaries lose their places without becoming Miltons! How many are in love, and write verses like Corneille and Racine; yet, these poets have found no equals among their successors.”

there exists no virtue, no moral precept, which has not been recommended, no faculty relative to human occupations which has not been more or less exercised. Cain was a laborer; Abel, a shepherd; the children of Jubal played on all sorts of wind and stringed instruments; the children of Tubal Cain were skillful workmen in iron and copper; Nehemiah established regulations of police”

COMO NEGAR AMIGOS E DESENCORAJAR PESSOAS, REFUTANDO MESMO ALGUNS AFORISMOS DE NIETZSCHE: “Quintilian ridicules the ancient maxim <that anybody, by means of constant application, may become an orator>. If precepts, says he, could bestow the art of eloquence, everyone would be eloquent.

Os homens ignoram aquilo que são capazes de fazer antes de, por experiência, tomarem nota daquilo que podem fazer segundo a própria natureza. (…) Assim, homens se sagraram poetas e oradores sem nem mesmo sonharem fazê-lo. Numa palavra, tudo que se tornaram, já o eram, por natureza; ninguém estudou para ser tal ou tal coisa, até perceber, de súbito, que havia sido dotado pela natureza com um talento específico. A natureza sempre dispôs das coisas, e sempre disporá: essa é uma afirmação que nunca será repetida demais.” Condillac


The brain is formed and increases gradually until it has attained its perfection, and this perfection takes place only between 20 and 40 years of age.”

If dwarfs, who enjoy their intellectual faculties to a certain degree, appear to form an occasional exception to this law, the size of the head has not been duly noticed, which, in these cases, is always very disproportionate to the rest of the body. Even when the head is a little larger than those which characterize complete imbecility, the intellectual faculties are still almost entirely benumbed.”

I shall show that when individuals distinguish themselves peculiarly, and in a remarkable manner, by a determinate quality, or when they fall into a fixed idea, propensity, partial mania, or monomania, by too great exaltation, it is almost always the extraordinary development of some particular organ which occasions it.”

The ancients gave to the statues of their priests and their philosophers much larger foreheads than to those of their gladiators. Remark, especially, the distinction they have adopted in their Jupiter of the capitol; the form of no head has ever been so strongly prominent in the anterior and superior part of the forehead. What a difference between this and the head of Bacchus!”

It has always been remarked that too rapid an increase, or a hastened development of organs weakens their special functions. This especially happens in the climacteric years or periods of development, of which physicians and physiologists cannot too highly appreciate the importance. The mind, the body, all then suffer at once. The individual is incapable of steady application, and instruction is at once arrested. This state ceases, only, when the interval devoted to this development has been passed; and we readily perceive that this is the case, because the intellectual faculties at once resume all their energy.”


it is reproached to the physiology of the brain, that it overturns the first foundations of morality and religion; that it eminently favors materialism and fatalism; and that, consequently, it denies free will. History teaches that the same has always happened to every discovery.”

Vesanum, literarum imperitissimum arrogantissimum, calumniatorem, maledicentissimum, rerum omnium ignarissimum, transfugam impium, ingratum, monstrum ignorantiae, impietatis exemplar perniciosissimum quod pestilentiali halitu Europam venenat”

It would seem that nature had subjected all truths to persecution, in order to establish them in a more solid manner; for he who knows how to wrest one from her, presents always a front of brass to the darts hurled against him, and has always the strength to defend and to consolidate it. History show us that all the efforts and all the sophisms, directed against a truth once drawn from the abyss, fall like dust, raised by the wind against a rock.”

Malebranche – Recherche de la verité

The antagonists of Aristotle caused his books to be burned; afterwards they burned the works of Ramus¹, who had written against Aristotle, and declared the adversaries of the Stagyrite heretics; and there were even legislative acts, forbidding to attack his philosophy under pain of the galleys. And yet no one now concerns himself with the philosophy of Aristotle!”

¹ Petrus Ramus, século XVI, comentarista protestante dos filósofos da Antiguidade.

The ancient church bestowed the name materialists on those who taught that matter existed from all eternity, and that, consequently, the Deity had not drawn the world out of nothing. This sort of materialism ordinarily leads to the denial of the existence of a Supreme Being.”

I call the material condition which renders the exercise of a faculty possible, an organ.”

CAPCIOSO: “were this language sufficient to charge me with materialism, the same charge would apply to all physicians, all philosophers, and all the fathers of the church.”

Bichat – Sur la vie et la mort

Non virtus est, non posse peccare. Cum renunciatur improbitati. Statim adsciscitur virtus. Egressus enim malitiae virtutis operatur ingressum.” St. Ambrosius

Quidam in juvente luxuriose viventes, in senectute continentes fieri delectantur et tum eligunt servire castitati, quando libido eos servos habere contempsit. Nequaquam in senectute continentes vocandi sunt qui in juventute luxuriose vixerunt; tales non habent praemium, quia laboris certamen non habuerunt; eos enim exspectat gloria, in quibus fuerumt gloriosa certamina.” Isidoro, Do sumo bem


The most opposite qualities often make of them the most problematic beings; such were Louis XI, Charles V, Philip II, James II, Catherine de Medicis, who though under the influence of a superstitious devotion, were the scourge of their subjects. These are the persons who experience, in the most sensible manner, the struggle of two beings at war within them. Such were Socrates, St. Paul, St. Augustin;¹ who having the most violent combats to sustain, may claim the most glorious prizes of virtue.”

¹ Todo convertido? No cliché/estereótipo do primeiro, o autoconvertido também?

You have the musician, the mechanic, the poet, all exclusive and ardent in their pursuits; but you have also the debauchee, the bravo, the robber, who, in certain cases, are passionate to such a degree that the excessive activity of these propensities degenerates into actual madness, and deprives the individual of all power do restrain them.”

You see apathies and partial imbecilities when, by the side of qualities and faculties sufficiently well marked, one or a few organs are very little developed. With such an organization, Lessing and Tischbein detest music; Newton and Kant have a horror of women.

as St. Paul says, the more laws, the more sins.”

O avô conceitual de Skinner.

We have even seen some, who procured their own arrest, in order to find a refuge in the prison. Men and women are often left together, whence it happens that in the prisons themselves their numbers are multiplied. Sometimes the prisoners are permitted to have their children with them.”

AS GRADAÇÕES DO BOMBONISMO: “We inflict on a mother who has exposed [abandonou] her infant different punishments according as the infant has incurred more or less risk of perishing”

OS AMERICANOS NUNCA FORAM BONS DE PENALTY: “If we regard the punishment of death as the destruction of a mischievous and incorrigible individual, or as a means of preventing crime, I think, with Montesquieu, J.J. Rousseau, Sonnenfels, Hommel, Filangieri, Schmalz, Kleinschrodt, Feuerbach, Klein, Bexon and others, that we cannot call in question the right which society has of destroying one of its members.” Treta do tradutor/comentador com o autor nas notas de rodapé acerca da questão.

AHÁ! “If there be a crime, which deserves to be treated as murder the most premeditated, foolish and dangerous, that crime is duelling. Usually for the merest trifles, and sometimes exasperated by the taunts of a bully by profession, men kill one another, in presence of numerous witnesses! No! I might in vain transport myself to the most barbarous countries and times, I should never be able to conceive their allowing so atrocious, so cruel an outrage on morality to subsist! (…) What honor, what courage, is it to kill or to be killed for a few words which happen to displease you, or for the vanity and admiration of a mistress!”

(editor) “A few years since, a gentleman in N.Y. wrote a most sensible article against the practice of duelling – and a few months after, fell a victim to the sin which he had so unequivocally condemned.” Se fodeu, otário.

(editor) “These are purely the suggestions of destructiveness [sobre infringir penas de tortura para criminosos hediondos] – and we are not a little surprised, to find that so discriminating a mind as that of Dr. Gall should ever sanction such sentiments.” Talvez vocês, caros frenologistas, desconheçam a constituição cerebral deste sujeito!

We may assume, as a general principle, that a mother cannot feel either anger or hatred against her new-born infant. This principle would always be operative, if the mother in these circumstances always acted consistently; if, indeed, she retained the power to act thus when overwhelmed with utter humiliation. But, in this fatal moment, the mother thinks only of the ingratitude, the infidelity, the perfidy of the father of the child; he has deceived her in the most infamous manner; he has loaded her with shame, and plunged her into wretchedness; he has destroyed all her enjoyment of the present, all her hopes in the future; and, while he forgets her in the arms of another, the laws afford this injured woman no protection, no indemnity, against her seducer. The idea that all the artifices he has employed to betray confiding innocence, to seduce an inexperienced girl, are now regarded as subjects for mirth; this idea presents itself to every unfortunate who finds herself deserted; this injustice vexes, torments, revolts her.”

CABEÇAS DE MEDÉIA: “We have examined the form of the head of 29 infanticide women.”

In a report of the counsel-general of hospitals at Paris, which includes 10 years from 1804 to 1814, it is remarked, under the head of insane, that the number of those received at the Salpêtrière and the Bicêtre was 2154 men and 2804 women. Of this number of cases, 658 are placed to the account of child-birth, its consequences and preceding circumstances, more or less distant.” “it is evident that we do not here speak of prostitutes.”

I have observed that both sexes experience every month, once or twice, a species of periodical derangement, which disturbs the harmony of their affections and their habits, and which assumes the character of an irritation and a melancholy of which the individual affected can render no reason to himself.”

A woman at Bamberg, whenever she had drank brandy, felt a strong desire to set fire to some house; but no sooner had the excitement passed than this woman was filled with horror at her own previous state. As, however, she was not always on her guard against the enticements of her favorite beverage, she actually committed arson in 14 instances.”

Many men have an especial inclination for building, travelling, disputing; one is inflamed with an insatiable desire of glory; another cannot spare his best friends, when a brilliant sarcasm rises in his mind.”

He appeared about 16 years of age, though in fact he was 26. His head was round, and about the size of a child of 1 year. This individual was also deaf and dumb”

We remark that by an inexplicable singularity several of this class of individuals possessed of such feeble intellect are born with a peculiar talent for copying, drawing, finding rhymes and for music. I have known several who have learned, by themselves, to play tolerably on the organ and the harpsichord; and others to repair clocks and to make some pieces of mechanism,” Fodéré

The short foreheads, wrinkled, knotty, irregular, deep on one side, slanting, or that always incline different ways, will never be a recommendation to me, and will never gain my friendship. While your brother, your friend, or your enemy, while man, though that man were a malefactor, presents you a well-proportioned and open forehead, do not despair of him, he is still susceptible of amendment.” Lavater

general permanent alienation cannot be mistaken. But the case is very different when general alienation is periodical, and when the paroxysms, after having ceased entirely, recur, either at irregular periods, or after a fixed interval, or when it is limited to certain qualities in particular, especially when this partial alienation completely disappears from time to time, and recurs, sometimes periodically, sometimes irregularly.”

às vezes uma febre intermitente aparece sob o disfarce de uma cãibra (ou uma tensão muscular mais simples) em somente um dos lados, ou uma dor de dente. Mas a máscara sob a qual a enfermidade se revela não modifica sua natureza; é requerido o mesmo tratamento que seria recomendado a fim de se curar a febre intermitente.”

The individual who, in preceding paroxysms, seemed a fury let loose, may, in the following one, devote all his time to the exercises of the most fervent piety; and he who, today, gives himself to the excesses of the most noisy enjoyment may, tomorrow, be plunged in the deepest melancholy.”

During his lucid intervals, his physiognomy is calm, his air mild and reserved, his answers modest, and full of propriety; he shows urbanity in his manners, a severe probity, the desire of obliging others, and expresses an ardent desire of being cured of his malady; but at the return of the paroxysm, which is especially marked with a certain redness of the face, by an intense heat in the head, and by burning thirst, his gait is hasty, the tone of his voice bold and arrogant, his looks full of menace, and he experiences the most violent propensity to provoke all who approach him, to irritate them, and to contend with them to the last.”

He told us that, from his childhood, religion had occupied all his thoughts, and that he had read the Holy Scripture, and all the commentators thereon, with the greatest attention; but that the extreme diversity of opinions had convinced him that he should not find the true religion in this manner; that he had therefore renounced reading and research, and had earnestly supplicated the Deity that, if not contrary to his eternal decrees, he would make him an immediate revelation of the truth. After having prayed a long time, he one night saw the room filled with as brilliant a light as could be produced by many suns. In the midst of this splendor, our Lord Jesus Christ appeared to him, and revealed the true religion. Koeper had sought to spread it with indefatigable zeal, which was with him a matter of duty. It was impossible to make this man believe that he had been led astray by illusions.”

Some refuse or are not disposed to communicate their condition to others. This apparent indifference, this apathy, this perfidious silence, ordinarily marks the most dangerous cases. Some annoy all those around them, by trifling bickerings; they see, everywhere, nothing but misfortune and wickedness; and even when their affairs present a picture of prosperity they are in despair, lest their children be plunged in famine and misery. Some imagine that everybody despises or persecutes them; they complain unceasingly that they are neglected, that justice is not done them. Sometimes, all the symptoms suddenly disappear, and again show themselves as suddenly. The melancholy and pusillanimity increase daily: most of these subjects feel a sharp and permanent pain above the root of the nose, and in the middle of the lower part of the forehead: sometimes this pain has its seat at the top of the head; often, too, some complain of an insupportable tension in the region of the forehead and a painful constriction in the region of the belly, which is as it were compressed by a hoop [argola].”

Their madness, it is said, is only feigned: a madman does not say I am mad, and madness does not reason. This false and barbarous mode of argument has sent to the scaffold beings to whom there was nothing to reproach, except the derangement of their reason”

It often happens that the blow they give themselves is not mortal or that, in throwing themselves from the precipice, their destruction is not completed, or that they are drawn from the water too soon. It is, however, very rare that such adventures cure them. The greater part remain melancholic or depressed. At the end of some days they seem to repent of what they have done; they are ashamed of it, and for some time take a part in the business of life. But the paroxysms soon return with new violence (…) Sometimes this same malady is concealed under a mask, in appearance altogether different. Life is equally a burden to these subjects; but they have not the energy to inflict death on themselves; they seek, by a kind of confusion and contradiction in their ideas, the means of having it inflicted by others. For this purpose, they ordinarily commit a murder of persons who have never offended them [maior parte dos casos patológicos no Black Metal], and often even upon children.”

These critical evacuations which continue a long time are more abundant at certain periodical times; and as, at their approach, the symptoms of the malady augment, their apparent relapses serve to announce an approaching evacuation.”

* * *


Infelizmente só consigo encontrar, sem custos, a primeira (a presente) e a quinta partes desta “hexalogia”.

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