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- THE DESCENT OF MAN - 10/165 -


Physiology,' 1871, p. 366) blames me much for not having discussed the numerous cases, which have been recorded, of various parts arrested in their development. He says that, according to my theory, "every transient condition of an organ, during its development, is not only a means to an end, but once was an end in itself." This does not seem to me necessarily to hold good. Why should not variations occur during an early period of development, having no relation to reversion; yet such variations might be preserved and accumulated, if in any way serviceable, for instance, in shortening and simplifying the course of development? And again, why should not injurious abnormalities, such as atrophied or hypertrophied parts, which have no relation to a former state of existence, occur at an early period, as well as during maturity?)

In man, the canine teeth are perfectly efficient instruments for mastication. But their true canine character, as Owen (42. 'Anatomy of Vertebrates,' vol. iii. 1868, p. 323.) remarks, "is indicated by the conical form of the crown, which terminates in an obtuse point, is convex outward and flat or sub-concave within, at the base of which surface there is a feeble prominence. The conical form is best expressed in the Melanian races, especially the Australian. The canine is more deeply implanted, and by a stronger fang than the incisors." Nevertheless, this tooth no longer serves man as a special weapon for tearing his enemies or prey; it may, therefore, as far as its proper function is concerned, be considered as rudimentary. In every large collection of human skulls some may be found, as Haeckel (43. 'Generelle Morphologie,' 1866, B. ii. s. clv.) observes, with the canine teeth projecting considerably beyond the others in the same manner as in the anthropomorphous apes, but in a less degree. In these cases, open spaces between the teeth in the one jaw are left for the reception of the canines of the opposite jaw. An inter-space of this kind in a Kaffir skull, figured by Wagner, is surprisingly wide. (44. Carl Vogt's 'Lectures on Man,' Eng. translat., 1864, p. 151.) Considering how few are the ancient skulls which have been examined, compared to recent skulls, it is an interesting fact that in at least three cases the canines project largely; and in the Naulette jaw they are spoken of as enormous. (45. C. Carter Blake, on a jaw from La Naulette, 'Anthropological Review,' 1867, p. 295. Schaaffhausen, ibid. 1868, p. 426.)

Of the anthropomorphous apes the males alone have their canines fully developed; but in the female gorilla, and in a less degree in the female orang, these teeth project considerably beyond the others; therefore the fact, of which I have been assured, that women sometimes have considerably projecting canines, is no serious objection to the belief that their occasional great development in man is a case of reversion to an ape-like progenitor. He who rejects with scorn the belief that the shape of his own canines, and their occasional great development in other men, are due to our early forefathers having been provided with these formidable weapons, will probably reveal, by sneering, the line of his descent. For though he no longer intends, nor has the power, to use these teeth as weapons, he will unconsciously retract his "snarling muscles" (thus named by Sir C. Bell) (46. The Anatomy of Expression, 1844, pp. 110, 131.), so as to expose them ready for action, like a dog prepared to fight.

Many muscles are occasionally developed in man, which are proper to the Quadrumana or other mammals. Professor Vlacovich (47. Quoted by Prof. Canestrini in the 'Annuario della Soc. dei Naturalisti,' 1867, p. 90.) examined forty male subjects, and found a muscle, called by him the ischio- pubic, in nineteen of them; in three others there was a ligament which represented this muscle; and in the remaining eighteen no trace of it. In only two out of thirty female subjects was this muscle developed on both sides, but in three others the rudimentary ligament was present. This muscle, therefore, appears to be much more common in the male than in the female sex; and on the belief in the descent of man from some lower form, the fact is intelligible; for it has been detected in several of the lower animals, and in all of these it serves exclusively to aid the male in the act of reproduction.

Mr. J. Wood, in his valuable series of papers (48. These papers deserve careful study by any one who desires to learn how frequently our muscles vary, and in varying come to resemble those of the Quadrumana. The following references relate to the few points touched on in my text: 'Proc. Royal Soc.' vol. xiv. 1865, pp. 379-384; vol. xv. 1866, pp. 241, 242; vol. xv. 1867, p. 544; vol. xvi. 1868, p. 524. I may here add that Dr. Murie and Mr. St. George Mivart have shewn in their Memoir on the Lemuroidea ('Transactions, Zoological Society,' vol. vii. 1869, p. 96), how extraordinarily variable some of the muscles are in these animals, the lowest members of the Primates. Gradations, also, in the muscles leading to structures found in animals still lower in the scale, are numerous in the Lemuroidea.), has minutely described a vast number of muscular variations in man, which resemble normal structures in the lower animals. The muscles which closely resemble those regularly present in our nearest allies, the Quadrumana, are too numerous to be here even specified. In a single male subject, having a strong bodily frame, and well-formed skull, no less than seven muscular variations were observed, all of which plainly represented muscles proper to various kinds of apes. This man, for instance, had on both sides of his neck a true and powerful "levator claviculae," such as is found in all kinds of apes, and which is said to occur in about one out of sixty human subjects. (49. See also Prof. Macalister in 'Proceedings, Royal Irish Academy,' vol. x. 1868, p. 124.) Again, this man had "a special abductor of the metatarsal bone of the fifth digit, such as Professor Huxley and Mr. Flower have shewn to exist uniformly in the higher and lower apes." I will give only two additional cases; the acromio-basilar muscle is found in all mammals below man, and seems to be correlated with a quadrupedal gait, (50. Mr. Champneys in 'Journal of Anatomy and Physiology,' Nov. 1871, p. 178.) and it occurs in about one out of sixty human subjects. In the lower extremities Mr. Bradley (51. Ibid. May 1872, p. 421.) found an abductor ossis metatarsi quinti in both feet of man; this muscle had not up to that time been recorded in mankind, but is always present in the anthropomorphous apes. The muscles of the hands and arms--parts which are so eminently characteristic of man--are extremely liable to vary, so as to resemble the corresponding muscles in the lower animals. (52. Prof. Macalister (ibid. p. 121) has tabulated his observations, and finds that muscular abnormalities are most frequent in the fore-arms, secondly, in the face, thirdly, in the foot, etc.) Such resemblances are either perfect or imperfect; yet in the latter case they are manifestly of a transitional nature. Certain variations are more common in man, and others in woman, without our being able to assign any reason. Mr. Wood, after describing numerous variations, makes the following pregnant remark. "Notable departures from the ordinary type of the muscular structures run in grooves or directions, which must be taken to indicate some unknown factor, of much importance to a comprehensive knowledge of general and scientific anatomy." (53. The Rev. Dr. Haughton, after giving ('Proc. R. Irish Academy,' June 27, 1864, p. 715) a remarkable case of variation in the human flexor pollicis longus, adds, "This remarkable example shews that man may sometimes possess the arrangement of tendons of thumb and fingers characteristic of the macaque; but whether such a case should be regarded as a macaque passing upwards into a man, or a man passing downwards into a macaque, or as a congenital freak of nature, I cannot undertake to say." It is satisfactory to hear so capable an anatomist, and so embittered an opponent of evolutionism, admitting even the possibility of either of his first propositions. Prof. Macalister has also described ('Proceedings Royal Irish Academy,' vol. x. 1864, p. 138) variations in the flexor pollicis longus, remarkable from their relations to the same muscle in the Quadrumana.)

That this unknown factor is reversion to a former state of existence may be admitted as in the highest degree probable. (54. Since the first edition of this book appeared, Mr. Wood has published another memoir in the Philosophical Transactions, 1870, p. 83, on the varieties of the muscles of the human neck, shoulder, and chest. He here shews how extremely variable these muscles are, and how often and how closely the variations resemble the normal muscles of the lower animals. He sums up by remarking, "It will be enough for my purpose if I have succeeded in shewing the more important forms which, when occurring as varieties in the human subject, tend to exhibit in a sufficiently marked manner what may be considered as proofs and examples of the Darwinian principle of reversion, or law of inheritance, in this department of anatomical science.") It is quite incredible that a man should through mere accident abnormally resemble certain apes in no less than seven of his muscles, if there had been no genetic connection between them. On the other hand, if man is descended from some ape-like creature, no valid reason can be assigned why certain muscles should not suddenly reappear after an interval of many thousand generations, in the same manner as with horses, asses, and mules, dark- coloured stripes suddenly reappear on the legs, and shoulders, after an interval of hundreds, or more probably of thousands of generations.

These various cases of reversion are so closely related to those of rudimentary organs given in the first chapter, that many of them might have been indifferently introduced either there or here. Thus a human uterus furnished with cornua may be said to represent, in a rudimentary condition, the same organ in its normal state in certain mammals. Some parts which are rudimentary in man, as the os coccyx in both sexes, and the mammae in the male sex, are always present; whilst others, such as the supracondyloid foramen, only occasionally appear, and therefore might have been introduced under the head of reversion. These several reversionary structures, as well as the strictly rudimentary ones, reveal the descent of man from some lower form in an unmistakable manner.

CORRELATED VARIATION.

In man, as in the lower animals, many structures are so intimately related, that when one part varies so does another, without our being able, in most cases, to assign any reason. We cannot say whether the one part governs the other, or whether both are governed by some earlier developed part. Various monstrosities, as I. Geoffroy repeatedly insists, are thus intimately connected. Homologous structures are particularly liable to change together, as we see on the opposite sides of the body, and in the upper and lower extremities. Meckel long ago remarked, that when the muscles of the arm depart from their proper type, they almost always imitate those of the leg; and so, conversely, with the muscles of the legs. The organs of sight and hearing, the teeth and hair, the colour of the skin and of the hair, colour and constitution, are more or less correlated. (55. The authorities for these several statements are given in my 'Variation of Animals under Domestication,' vol. ii. pp. 320-335.) Professor Schaaffhausen first drew attention to the relation apparently existing between a muscular frame and the strongly-pronounced supra-orbital ridges, which are so characteristic of the lower races of man.

Besides the variations which can be grouped with more or less probability under the foregoing heads, there is a large class of variations which may be provisionally called spontaneous, for to our ignorance they appear to arise without any exciting cause. It can, however, be shewn that such variations, whether consisting of slight individual differences, or of strongly-marked and abrupt deviations of structure, depend much more on the constitution of the organism than on the nature of the conditions to which it has been subjected. (56. This whole subject has been discussed in chap. xxiii. vol. ii. of my 'Variation of Animals and Plants under Domestication.')

RATE OF INCREASE.

Civilised populations have been known under favourable conditions, as in the United States, to double their numbers in twenty-five years; and, according to a calculation, by Euler, this might occur in a little over twelve years. (57. See the ever memorable 'Essay on the Principle of Population,' by the Rev. T. Malthus, vol. i. 1826. pp. 6, 517.) At the former rate, the present population of the United States (thirty millions), would in 657 years cover the whole terraqueous globe so thickly, that four men would have to stand on each square yard of surface. The primary or fundamental check to the continued increase of man is the difficulty of


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