Grosse is inclined to think (78) that it is in the male only that courage is expected and admired, but he is mistaken, as we may see, e.g., in the account given by Dobrizhoffer (II., 21) of the tattooing customs of the Abipones, whom he studied so carefully. The women, he says,
"have their face, breast, and arms covered with black figures of various shapes, so that they present the appearance of a Turkish carpet." "This savage ornament is purchased with blood and many groans."
The thorns used to puncture the skin are poisonous, and after the operation the girl has her eyes, cheeks, and lips so horribly swelled that she "looks like a Stygian fury." If she groans while undergoing the torture, or shows signs of pain in her face, the old woman who operates on her exclaims, in a rage: "You will die single, be assured. Which of our heroes would think so cowardly a girl worthy to be his wife?" Such courage, Dobrizhoffer explains further, is admired in a girl because it makes her "prepared to bear the pains of parturition in time." In some cases vanity supplies an additional motive why the girls should submit to the painful operation with fortitude; for those of them who "are most pricked and painted you may know to be of high rank."
Here again we see clearly that the tattooing is admired for other than esthetic reasons, and we realize how foolish it is to philosophize about the peculiar "taste" of these Indians in admiring a girl who looks like "a Turkish carpet" or "a Stygian fury." If they had even the rudiments of a sense of beauty they would not indulge in such disgusting disfigurements.
MUTILATION, FASHION, AND EMULATION
Grosse declares (80) that "we know definitely at least, that tattooing is regarded by the Eskimo as an embellishment." He bases this inference on Cranz's assertion that Eskimo mothers tattoo their daughters in early youth "for fear that otherwise they would not get a husband." Had Grosse allowed his imagination to paint a particular instance, he would have seen how grotesque his inference is. A favorite way among the Eskimo of securing a bride is, we are told, to drag her from her tent by the hair. This young woman, moreover, has never washed her face, nor does any man object to her filth. Yet we are asked to believe that an Eskimo could be so enamoured of the beauty of a few simple lines tattooed on a girl's dirty face that he would refuse to marry her unless she had them! Like other champions of the sexual selection theory, Grosse searches in the clouds for a comically impossible motive when the real reason lies right before his eyes. That reason is fashion. The tattoo marks are tribal signs (Bancroft, I., 48) which every girl must submit to have in obedience to inexorable custom, unless she is prepared to be an object of scorn and ridicule all her life.
The tyranny of fashion in prescribing disfigurements and mutilations is not confined to savages. The most amazing illustration of it is to be found in China, where the girls of the upper classes are obliged to this day to submit to the most agonizing process of crippling their feet, which finally, as Professor Flower remarks in his book on Fashion and Deformity, assume "the appearance of the hoof of some animal rather than a human foot." There is a popular delusion that the Chinese approve of such deformed small feet because they consider them beautiful—a delusion which Westermarck shares (200). Since the Chinese consider small feet "the chief charm of women," it might be supposed, he says, that the women would at least have the pleasure of fascinating men by a "beauty" to acquire which they have to undergo such horrible torture;
"but Dr. Strieker assures us that in China a woman is considered immodest if she shows her artificially distorted feet to a man. It is even improper to speak of a woman's foot, and in decent pictures this part is always concealed under the dress."
To explain this apparent anomaly Westermarck assumes that the object of the concealment "is to excite through the unknown!" To such fantastic nonsense does the doctrine of sexual selection lead. In reality there is no reason for supposing that the Chinese consider crippled feet—looking like "the hoof of an animal"—beautiful any more than mutilations of other parts of the body. In all probability the origin of the custom of crippling women's feet must be traced to the jealousy of the men, who devised this procedure as an effective way of preventing their wives from leaving their homes and indulging in amorous intrigues; other practices with the same purpose being common in Oriental countries. In course of time the foot-binding became an inexorable fashion which the foolishly conservative women were more eager to continue than the men. All accounts agree that the anti-foot-binding movement finds its most violent and stubborn opponents in the women themselves. The Missionary Review for July, 1899, contains an article summing up a report of the Tien Tsu Hui, or "Natural Foot Society," which throws a bright light on the whole question and from which I quote as follows:
"The male members of a family may be opposed to the maiming of their female relatives by the senseless custom, but the women will support it. One Chinese even promised his daughter a dollar a day to keep her natural feet, and another, having failed with his older girls, arranged that his youngest should be under his personal supervision night and day. The one natural-footed girl was sought in marriage for the dollars that had been faithfully laid by for her. But at her new home she was so ridiculed by the hundreds who came to see her—and her feet—that she lost her reason. The other girl also became insane as a result of the persecutions which she had to endure."
Thus we see that what keeps up this hideous custom is not the women's desire to arouse the esthetic admiration and amorous passion of the men by a hoof of beauty, but the fear of ridicule and persecution by the other women, slaves of fashion all. These same motives are the source of most of the ugly fashions prevalent even in civilized Europe and America. Theophile Gautier believed that most women had no sense of beauty, but only a sense of fashion; and if explorers and missionaries had borne in mind the fundamental difference between fashion and esthetics, anthropological literature would be the poorer by hundreds of "false facts" and ludicrous inferences.
The ravages of fashion are aggravated by emulation, which has its sources in vanity and envy. This accounts for the extremes to which mutilations and fashions often go among both, civilized and uncivilized races, and of which a startling instance will be described in detail in the next paragraph. Few of our rich women wear their jewels because of their intrinsic beauty. They wear them for the same reason that Polynesian or African belles wear all the beads they can get. In Mariner's book on the Tongans (Chap. XV.) there is an amusing story of a chiefs daughter who was very anxious to go to Europe. Being asked why, she replied that her great desire was to amass a large quantity of beads and then return to Tonga, "because in England beads are so common that no one would admire me for wearing them, and I should not have the pleasure of being envied." Bancroft (I., 128) says of the Kutchin Indians: "Beads are their wealth, used in the place of money, and the rich among them literally load themselves with necklaces and strings of various patterns." Referring to the tin ornaments worn by Dyaks, Carl Bock says he has "counted as many as sixteen rings in a single ear, each of them the size of a dollar"; while of the Ghonds Forsyth tells us (148) that they "deck themselves with an inordinate amount of what they consider ornaments. Quantity rather than quality is aimed at."
PERSONAL BEAUTY VERSUS PERSONAL DECORATION
Must we then, in view of the vast number of opposing facts advanced so far in this long chapter, assume that savages and barbarians have no esthetic sense at all, not even a germ of it? Not necessarily. I believe that the germ of a sense of visible beauty may exist even among savages as well as the germ of a musical sense; but that it is little more than a childish pleasure in bright and lustrous shells and other objects of various colors, especially red and yellow, everything beyond that being usually found to belong to the region of utility (language of signs, desire to attract attention, etc.) and not to esthetics—that is, the love of beauty for its own sake. Such a germ of esthetic pleasure we find in our infants years before they have the faintest conception of what is meant by personal beauty; and this brings me to the pith of my argument. Had the facts warranted it, I might have freely conceded that savages decorate themselves for the sake of gaining an advantage in courtship without thereby in the least yielding the main thesis of this chapter, which is that the admiration of personal beauty is not one of the motives which induce a savage to marry a particular girl or man; for most of the "decorations" described in the preceding pages are not elements of personal beauty at all, but are either external appendages to that beauty, or mutilations of it. I have shown by a superabundance of facts that these "decorations" do not serve the purpose of exciting the amorous passion and preference of the opposite sex, except non-esthetically and indirectly, in some cases, through their standing as marks of rank, wealth, distinction in war, etc. I shall now proceed to show, much more briefly, that still less does personal beauty proper serve among the lower races as a stimulant of sexual passion. This we should expect naturally, since in the race as in the child the pleasure in bright baubles must long precede the pleasure in beautiful faces or figures. Every one who has been among Indians or other savages knows that nature produces among them fine figures and sometimes even pretty faces; but these are not appreciated. Galton told Darwin that he saw in one South African tribe two slim, slight, and pretty girls, but they were not attractive to the natives. Zoeller saw at least one beautiful negress; Wallace describes the superb figures of some of the Brazilian Indians and the Aru Islanders in the Malay Archipelago (354); and Barrow says that some of the Hottentot girls have beautiful figures when young—every joint and limb well turned. But as we shall see presently, the criterion of personal charm among Hottentots, as among savages in general, is fat, not what we call beauty. Ugliness, whether natural or inflicted by fashion, does not among these races act as a bar to marriage. "Beauty is of no estimation in either sex," we read regarding the Creeks in Schoolcraft (V., 272): "It is strength or agility that recommends the young man to his mistress; and to be a skilful or swift hunter is the highest merit with the woman he may choose for a wife." Belden found that the squaws were valued "only for their strength and ability to work, and no account whatever is taken of their personal beauty," etc., etc. Nor can the fact that savages kill deformed children be taken as an indication of a regard for personal beauty. Such children are put out of the way for the simple reason that they may not become a burden to the family or the tribe.
Advocates of the sexual selection theory make much ado over the fact that in all countries the natives prefer their own peculiar color and features—black, red, or yellow, flat noses, high cheek bones, thick lips, etc.—and dislike what we consider beautiful. But the likes of these races regarding personal appearance have no more to do with a sense of beauty than their dislikes. It is merely a question of habit. They like their own faces because they are used to them, and dislike ours because they are strange. In their aversion to our faces they are actuated by the same motive that makes a European child cry out and run away in terror at sight of a negro—not because he is ugly, for he may be good-looking, but because he is strange.
Far from admiring such beauty as nature may have given them, the lower races exercise an almost diabolical ingenuity in obliterating or mutilating it. Hundreds of their visitors have written of certain tribes that they would not be bad looking if they would only leave nature alone. Not a single feature, from the feet to the eyeballs, has escaped the uglifying process. "Nothing is too absurd or hideous to please them," writes Cameron. The Eskimos afford a striking illustration of the fact that a germ of taste for ornamentation in general is an earlier manifestation of the esthetic faculty than the appreciation of personal beauty; for while displaying considerable skill and ingenuity in the decorations of their clothes, canoes, and weapons, they mutilate their persons in various ways and allow them to be foul and malodorous with the filth of years. One of the most disgusting mutilations on record is that practised by the Indians of British Columbia, who insert a piece of bone in the lower lip, which, gradually enlarged, makes it at last project three inches. Bancroft (I., 98) devotes three pages to the lip mutilation indulged in by the Thlinkeet females. When the operation is completed and the block is withdrawn "the lip drops down upon the chin like a piece of leather, displaying the teeth, and presenting altogether a ghastly spectacle." The lower teeth and gum, says one witness, are left quite naked; another says that the plug "distorts every feature in the lower part of the face"; a third that an old woman, the wife of a chief, had a lip "ornament" so large "that by a peculiar motion of her under-lip she could almost conceal her whole face with it"; and a fourth gives a description of this "abominably revolting spectacle," which is too nauseating to quote.
DE GUSTIBUS NON EST DISPUTANDUM (?)
"Abominably revolting," "hideous," "filthy," "disgusting," "atrocious"—such are usually the words of observers in describing these shocking mutilations. Nevertheless they always apply the word "ornamentation" to them, with the implication that the savages look upon them as beautiful, although all that the observers had a right to say was that they pleased the savages and were approved by fashion. What is worse, the philosophers fell into the pitfall thus dug for them. Darwin thinks that the mutilations indulged in by savages show "how different is the standard of taste"; Humboldt (III., 236) reflects on the strange fact that nations "attach the idea of beauty" to whatever configuration nature has given them; and Ploss (I., 48) declares bluntly that there is no such thing as an absolute standard of beauty and that savages have "just as much right" to their ideas on the subject as we have to admire a madonna of Raphael. This view, indeed, is generally held; it is expressed in the old saw, De gustibus non est disputandum. Now it is true that it is unwise to dispute about tastes conversationally; but scientifically speaking, that old saw has not a sound tooth in it.
If a peasant who has never had an opportunity to cultivate his musical sense insisted that a certain piano was exquisitely in tune and had as beautiful a tone as any other piano, whereas an expert musician declared that it had a shrill tone and was terribly out of tune, would anybody be so foolish as to say that the peasant had as much right to his opinion as the musician? Or if an Irish toper declared that a bottle of Chambertin, over which French epicures smacked their lips, was insipid and not half as fine as the fusel-oil on which he daily got drunk, would not everybody agree that the Irishman was no judge of liquors, and that the reason why he preferred his cheap whiskey to the Burgundy was that his nerves of taste were too coarse to detect the subtle and exquisite bouquet of the French wine? In both these examples we are concerned only with simple questions of sense perception; yet in the matter of personal beauty, which involves not only the senses, but the imagination, the intellect, and the subtlest feelings, we are asked to believe that any savage who has never seen a woman but those of his own race has as much right to his opinion as a Ruskin or a Titian, who have given their whole life to the study of beauty!
If an astronomer—to take another illustration—were told that de astronomia non est disputandum, and that the Namaquas, who believe that the moon is made of bacon, or the Brazilian tribes who think that an eclipse consists in an attempt on the part of a monstrous jaguar to swallow the sun—have as much right to their opinion as he has, he would consider the person who advanced such an argument either a wag or a fool. Only a wag or a fool, again, would argue that a Fijian has just as much right as we have to his opinions on medical matters, or on the morality of polygamy, infanticide, and cannibalism. Yet when we come across a dirty, malodorous savage, so stupid that he cannot count ten, who mutilates every part of his body till he has lost nearly all semblance to a human being, we are soberly asked to look upon this as merely a "difference in the standard of esthetic taste," and to admit that the savage has "as much right to his taste," as we have. The more I think of it, the more I am amazed at this unjust and idiotic discrimination against the esthetic faculty—a discrimination for which I can find no other explanation than the fact already referred to, that most men of science know so much less about matters of beauty than about everything else in the world. They labor under the delusion that the sense of beauty is one of the earliest products of mental evolution, whereas their own attitude in the matter affords painful proof that it is one of the latest. They will understand some day that a steatopygous "Hottentot Venus" is no more beautiful because an African finds her attractive, than an ugly, bloated, blear-eyed harlot is beautiful because she pleases a drunken libertine.
What makes the traditional attitude of scientific men in this matter the less pardonable is that—as we have seen—there is always a simple, practical explanation for the predilections of these savages, so that there is no necessity whatever for assuming the existence of so paradoxical and impossible a thing as an esthetic admiration of these hideous deformities. Thus, in regard to the nauseating lip "ornaments" of the Thlinkeets just referred to, the testimony collected by Bancroft indicates unmistakably that they are approved of, perpetuated, and aggravated for two reasons—both non-esthetic—namely, as indications of rank, and from the necessity of conforming to fashion. Ladies of distinction, we read, increase the size of their lip plug. Langsdorff even saw women "of very high rank" with this "ornament" full five inches long and three broad; Dixon says the mutilation is always in proportion to the person's wealth; and Mayne relates, in his book on the British Columbia Indians, that "a woman's rank among women is settled according to the size of her wooden lip."
INDIFFERENCE TO DIRT
That savages can have no sense of personal beauty is further proved by their habitual indifference to personal cleanliness, the most elementary and imperative of esthetic requirements. When we read in McLean (II., 153) that some Eskimo girls "might pass as pretty if divested of their filth;" or in Cranz (I., 134) that "it is almost sickening to view their hands and faces smeared with grease ... and their filthy clothes swarming with vermin;" and when we further read in Kotzebue (II., 56) regarding the Kalush that his "filthy countrywomen with their lip-trough ... often awaken in him the most vehement passion," we realize vividly that that passion is a coarse appetite which exists quite apart from, and independently of, anything that might be considered beautiful or ugly.
The subject is not a pleasant one; but as it is one of my strongest arguments, I must be pardoned for giving some more unsavory details. Among some of the British Columbia Indians "pretty women may be seen; nearly all have good eyes and hair, but the state of filth in which they live generally neutralizes any natural charms they may possess." (Mayne, 277.) Lewis and Clarke write (439) regarding the Chinook Indians:
"Their broad, flat foreheads, their falling breasts, their ill-shaped limbs, the awkwardness of their positions, and the filth which intrudes through their finery—all these render a Chinook or Clatsop beauty in full attire one of the most disgusting objects in nature."
Muir says of the Mono Indians of the California Mountains (93): "The dirt on their faces was fairly stratified, and seemed so ancient and so undisturbed it might also possess a geological significance." Navajo girls "usually evince a catlike aversion to water." (Schoolcraft, IV., 214.) Cozzens relates (128) how, among the Apaches, "the sight of a man washing his face and hands almost convulsed them with laughter." He adds that their personal appearance explained their surprise. Burton (80) found among the Sioux a dislike to cleanliness "which nothing but the fear of the rod will subdue." "In an Indian village," writes Neill (79), "all is filth and litter.... Water, except in very warm weather, seldom touches their bodies."
The Comanches are "disgustingly filthy in their persons." (Schoolcraft, I., 235.) The South American Waraus "are exceedingly dirty and disgusting in their habits, and their children are so much neglected that their fingers and toes are frequently destroyed by vermin." (Bernau, 35.) The Patagonians "are excessively filthy in their personal habits." (Bourne, 56.) The Mundrukus "are very dirty" (Markham, 172), etc.
Of the Damara negroes, Anderson says (N., 50): "Dirt often accumulates to such a degree on their persons as to make the color of their skins totally undistinguishable;" and Galton (92) "could find no pleasure in associating or trying to chat with these Damaras, they were so filthy and disgusting in every way." Thunberg writes of the Hottentots (73) that they "find a peculiar pleasure in filth and stench;" wherein they resemble Africans in general. Griffith declares that the hill tribes of India are "the dirtier the farther we advance;" elsewhere we read:
"Both males and females, as a class, are very dirty and filthy in both person and habits. They appear to have an antipathy to bathing, and to make matters worse, they have a habit of anointing their bodies with ghee (melted butter);"
and of another of these tribes:
"The Karens are a dirty people. They never use soap, and their skins are enamelled with dirt. When water is thrown on them, it rolls off their backs like globules of quicksilver on a marble slab. To them bathing has a cooling, but no cleansing effect."
The Mishinis are "disgustingly dirty." By the Kirgliez "uncleanliness is elevated into a virtue hallowed by tradition." The Kalmucks are described as filthy, the Kamtschadales as exceedingly so, etc.
REASONS FOR BATHING.
Among the inhabitants of the islands of the Pacific we meet with apparent exceptions. These natives are practically amphibious, spending half their time in the ocean, and are therefore of necessity clean. So are certain coast negroes and Indian tribes living along river-banks. But Ellis (Pol. Res., I., 110) was shrewd enough to see that the habit of frequent bathing indulged in by the South Sea Islanders was a luxury—a result of the hot climate—and not an indication of the virtue of cleanliness. In this respect Captain Cook showed less acumen, for he remarks (II., 148) that "nothing appears to give them greater pleasure than personal cleanliness, to produce which they frequently bathe in ponds." His confusion of ideas is made apparent in the very next sentence, where he adds that the water in most of these ponds "stinks intolerably." That it is merely the desire for comfort and sport that induces the Polynesians to bathe so much is proved further by the attitude of the New Zealanders. Hawksworth declares (III., 451) that they "stink like Hottentots;" and the reason lies in the colder climate which makes bathing less of a luxury to them. The Micronesians also spend much of their time in the water, for comfort, not for cleanliness. Gerland cites grewsome details of their nastiness. (Waitz, V., Pt. II., 81, 188.) The Kaffirs, says Gardiner (101), "although far from cleanly," are fond of bathing. In some other cases the water is sought for its warmth instead of its coolness. In Brazil the morning air is much colder than the water, wherefore the natives take to the river for comfort, as the Japanese do in winter to their hot tubs. All Indians, says Bancroft (I., 83), "attach great importance to their sweatbaths," not for cleanliness—for they are "extremely filthy in their persons and habits"—but "as a remedial measure."
Unless they happen to indulge in bathing for comfort, the lowest of savages are also the dirtiest. Leigh writes (147) that in South Australia many of the women, including the wives of chiefs, had "sore eyes from the smoke, the filth, and their abominable want of cleanliness." Sturt (II., 53) refers to the Australian women as "disgusting objects." At funerals, "the women besmear themselves with the most disgusting filth." The naked boys in Taplin's school "had no notion of cleanliness." The youths from the age of ten to sixteen or seventeen were compelled by custom to let their hair grow, the result being "a revolting mass of tangled locks and filth." (Woods, 20, 85.) Sturt sums up his impressions by declaring (II., 126): "Really, the loathsome condition and hideous countenances of the women would, I should imagine, have been a complete antidote to the sexual passion."
CORPULENCE VERSUS BEAUTY
An instructive instance of the loose reasoning which prevails in the esthetic sphere is provided by the Rev. H.N. Hutchinson, in his Marriage Customs in Many Lands. After describing some of the customs of the Australians, he goes on to say:
"One would think that such degraded creatures as these men are would be quite incapable of appreciating female beauty, but that is not the case. Good-looking girls are much admired and consequently frequently stolen away."
As a matter of fact, beauty has nothing to do with the stealing of the women. The real motive is revealed in the following passage from Brough Smyth (79):
"A very fat woman presents such an attractive appearance to the eyes of the blacks that she is always liable to be stolen. However old and ugly she way be, she will be courted and petted and sought for by the warriors, who seldom hesitate to risk their lives if there is a chance for obtaining so great a prize."
An Australian Shakspere obviously would have written "Fat provoketh thieves sooner than gold," instead of "beauty provoketh thieves." And the amended maxim applies to savages in general, as well as to barbarians and Orientals. In his Savage Life in Polynesia, the Rev. W.W. Gill remarks:
"The great requisites for a Polynesian beauty are to be fat and as fair as their dusky skins will permit. To insure this, favorite children, whether boys or girls, were regularly fattened and imprisoned till nightfall when a little gentle exercise was permitted. If refractory, the guardian would whip the culprit for not eating more."
American Indians do not differ in this respect from Australians and Polynesians. The horrible obesity of the squaws on the Pacific Coast used to inspire me with disgust, as a boy, and I could not understand how anyone could marry such fat abominations. Concerning the South American tribes, Humboldt says (Trav., I., 301): "In several languages of these countries, to express the beauty of a woman, they say that she is fat, and has a narrow forehead."
FATTENING GIRLS FOR THE MARRIAGE MARKET
The population of Africa comprises hundreds of different peoples and tribes, the vast majority of whom make bulk and weight the chief criterion of a woman's charms. The hideous deformity known as steatopyga, or hypertrophy of the buttocks, occurs among South African Bushman, Koranna, and Hottentot women. Darwin says that Sir Andrew Smith
"once saw a woman who was considered a beauty, and she was so immensely developed behind that when seated on level ground she could not rise, and had to push herself along until she came to a slope. Some of the women in various negro tribes have the same peculiarity; and according to Burton, the Somal men, 'are said to choose their wives by ranging them in a line and by picking her out who projects farthest a tergo. Nothing can be more hateful to a negro than the opposite form.'"
The notions of the Yoruba negroes regarding female perfection consist, according to Lander, in "the bulk, plumpness, and rotundity of the object."
Among the Karague, women were exempted from hard labor because the men were anxious to have them as fat as possible. To please the men, they ate enormous quantities of bananas and drank milk by the gallon. Three of Rumanika's wives were so fat that they could not go through an ordinary door, and when they walked they needed two men each to support them.
Speke measured one of the much-admired African wonders of obesity, who was unable to stand except on all fours. Result: around the arms, 1 foot 11 inches; chest, 4 feet 4 inches; thigh, 2 feet 7 inches; calf, 1 foot 8 inches; height, 5 feet 8 inches.
"Meanwhile, the daughter, a lass of sixteen, sat stark-naked before us, sucking at a milk-pot, on which her father kept her at work by holding a rod in his hand; for as fattening is the first duty of fashionable female life, it must be duly enforced by the rod if necessary. I got up a bit of flirtation with missy, and induced her to rise and shake hands with me. Her features were lovely, but her body was round as a ball."
Speke also tells (370) of a girl who, a mere child when the king died, was such a favorite of his, that he left her twenty cows, in order that she might fatten upon milk after her native fashion.
Mungo Park declared that the Moorish women
"seem to be brought up for no other purpose than that of ministering to the sensual pleasures of their imperious masters. Voluptuousness is therefore considered as their chief accomplishment.... The Moors have singular ideas of feminine perfection. The gracefulness of figure and motion, and a countenance enlivened by expression, are by no means essential points in their standard: With them corpulence and beauty seem to be terms nearly synonymous: A woman of even moderate pretensions must be one who cannot walk without a slave under each arm, to support her; and a perfect beauty is a load for a camel.... Many of the young girls are compelled, by their mothers, to devour a great quantity of kouskous, and drink a large bowl of camel's milk every morning.... I have seen a poor girl sit crying, with the bowl at her lips, for more than an hour; and her mother, with a stick in her hand watching her all the while, and using the stick without mercy, whenever she observed that her daughter was not swallowing."
A Somali love-song says: "You are beautiful and your limbs are fat; but if you would drink camel's milk you would be still more beautiful." Nubian girls are especially fattened for their marriage by rubbing grease over them and stuffing them with polenta and goat milk. When the process is completed they are poetically likened to a hippopotamus. In Egypt and India, where the climate naturally tends to make women thin, the fat ones are, as in Australia, the ideals of beauty, as their poets would make plain to us if it were not known otherwise. A Sanscrit poet declares proudly that his beloved is so borne down by the weight of her thighs and breasts that she cannot walk fast; and in the songs of Hala there are numerous "sentiments" like that. The Arabian poet Amru declares rapturously that his favorite beauty has thighs so delightfully exuberant that she can scarcely enter the tent door. Another Arabian poet apostrophizes "the maid of Okaib, who has haunches like sand-hills, whence her body rises like a palm-tree." And regarding the references to personal appearance in the writings of the ancient Hebrews, Rossbach remarks:
"In all these descriptions human beauty is recognized in the luxurious fulness of parts, not in their harmony and proportion. Spiritual expression in the sensual form is not adverted to" (238).
Thus, from the Australian and the Indian to the Hebrew, the Arab, and the Hindoo, what pleases the men in women is not their beauty, but their voluptuous rotundity; they care only for those sensual aspects which emphasize the difference between the sexes. The object of the modern wasp waist (in the minds of the class of females who, strange to say, are allowed by respectable women to set the fashion for them) is to grossly exaggerate the bust and the hips, and it is for the same reason that barbarian and Oriental girls are fattened for the marriage market. The appeal is to the appetite, not to the esthetic sense.
THE CONCUPISCENCE THEORY OF BEAUTY
In writing this I do not ignore the fact that many authors have held that personal beauty and sensuality are practically identical or indissolubly associated. The sober philosopher, Bain, gravely advances the opinion that, on the whole, personal beauty turns, 1, upon qualities and appearances that heighten the expression of favor or good-will; and, 2, upon qualities and appearances that suggest the endearing embrace. Eckstein expresses the same idea more coarsely by saying that "finding a thing beautiful is simply another way of expressing the manifestation of the sexual appetite." But it remained for Mantegazza to give this view the most cynical expression:
"We look at woman through the prism of desire, and she looks at us in the same way; her beauty appears to us the more perfect the more it arouses our sexual desires—that is, the more voluptuous enjoyment the possession of her promises us."
He adds that for this reason a man of twenty finds nearly all women beautiful.
Thus the beauty of a woman, in the opinion of these writers, consists in those physical qualities which arouse a man's concupiscence. I admit that this theory applies to savages and to Orientals; the details given in the preceding pages prove that. It applies also, I must confess, to the majority of Europeans and Americans. I have paid special attention to this point in various countries and have noticed that a girl with a voluptuous though coarse figure and a plain face will attract much more masculine attention than a girl whose figure and face are artistically beautiful without being voluptuous. But this only helps to prove my main thesis—that the sense of personal beauty is one of the latest products of civilization, rare even at the present day. What I deny most emphatically is that the theory advocated by Bain, Eckstein, and Mantegazza applies to those persons who are so lucky as to have a sense of beauty. These fortunate individuals can admire the charms of a living beauty without any more concupiscence or thought of an endearing embrace than accompanies their contemplation of the Venus de Milo or a Madonna painted by Murillo; and if they are in love with a particular girl their admiration of her beauty is superlatively free from carnal ingredients, as we saw in the section on Mental Purity. Since in such a question personal evidence is of importance, I will add that, fortunately, I have been deeply in love several times in my life and can therefore testify that each time my admiration of the girl's beauty was as purely esthetic as if she had been a flower. In each case the mischief was begun by a pair of brown eyes.
Eyes, it is true, can be as wanton and as voluptuous as a plump figure. Powers notes (20) that some California Indian girls are pretty and have "large, voluptuous eyes." Such eyes are common among the lower races and Orientals; but they are not the eyes which inspire romantic love. Lips, too, it might be said, invite kisses; but a lover would consider it sacrilege to touch his idol's lips unchastely. Savages are strangers to kissing for the exactly opposite reason—that it is too refined a detail of sensuality to appeal to their coarse nerves. How far they are from being able to appreciate lips esthetically appears from the way in which they so often deform them. The mouth is peculiarly the index of mental and moral refinement, and a refined pair of lips can inspire as pure a love as the celestial beauty of innocent eyes. As for the other features, what is there to suggest lascivious thoughts in a clear complexion, an oval chin, ivory teeth, rosy cheeks, or in curved eyebrows, long, dark lashes, or flowing tresses? Our admiration of these, and of a graceful gait, is as pure and esthetic—as purely esthetic—as our admiration of a sunset, a flower, a humming-bird, a lovely child. It has been truly said that a girl's marriage chances have been made or marred by the size or shape of her nose. What has the size or shape of a girl's nose to do with the "endearing embrace?" This question alone reduces the concupiscence theory ad absurdum.
UTILITY IS NOT BEAUTY
Almost as repulsive as the view which identifies the sense of personal beauty with concupiscence is that which would reduce it to a matter of coarse utility. Thus Eckstein, misled by Schopenhauer, holds that healthy teeth are beautiful for the reason that they guarantee the proper mastication of the food; while small breasts are ugly because they do not promise sufficient nourishment to the child that is to be born.
This argument is refuted by the simple statement that our teeth, if they looked like rusty nails, might be even more useful than now, but could no longer be beautiful. As for women's breasts, if utility were the criterion, the most beautiful would be those of the African mothers who can throw them over their shoulders to suckle the infants on their backs without impeding their work. As a matter of fact, the loveliest breast is the virginal, which serves no use while it remains so. A dray horse is infinitely more useful to us than an Arab racer, but is he as beautiful? Tigers and snakes are anything but useful to the human race, but we consider their skins beautiful.
A NEW SENSE EASILY LOST AGAIN
No, the sense of personal beauty is neither a synonyme for libidinous desires nor is it based on utilitarian considerations. It is practically a new sense, born of mental refinement and imagination. It by no means scorns a slight touch of the voluptuous, so far as it does not exceed the limits of artistic taste and moral refinement—a well-rounded figure and "a face voluptuous, yet pure"—but it is an entirely different thing from the predilection for fat and other coarse exaggerations of sexuality which inspire lust instead of love. This new sense is still, as I have said, rare everywhere; and, like the other results of high and recent culture, it is easily obliterated. In his treatise on insanity Professor Krafft-Ebing shows that in degeneration of the brain the esthetic and moral qualities are among the first to disappear. It is the same with normal man when he descends into a lower sphere. Zoller relates (III., 68) that when Europeans arrive in Africa they find the women so ugly they can hardly look at them without a feeling of repulsion. Gradually they become habituated to their sight, and finally they are glad to accept them as companions. Stanley has an eloquent passage on the same topic (II. I. F.L., 265):
"The eye that at first despised the unclassic face of the black woman of Africa soon loses its regard for fine lines and mellow pale color; it finds itself ere long lingering wantonly over the inharmonious and heavy curves of a negroid form, and looking lovingly on the broad, unintellectual face, and into jet eyes that never flash with the dazzling love-light that makes poor humanity beautiful."
The word I have italicized explains it all. The sense of personal beauty is displaced again by the concupiscence which had held its place in the early history of mankind.
To realize fully what such a relapse may mean, read what Galton says (123) of the Hottentots. They have
"that peculiar set of features which is so characteristic of bad characters in England, and so general among prisoners that it is usually, I believe, known by the name of the 'felon-face;' I mean that they have prominent cheek-bones, bullet-shaped head, cowering but restless eyes, and heavy sensual lips, and added to this a shackling dress and manner."
Of the Damaras Galton says (99) that "their features are often beautifully chiselled, though the expression in them is always coarse and disagreeable." And to quote Mungo Park on the Moors once more (158):
"I fancied that I discovered in the features of most of them a disposition toward cruelty and low cunning.... From the staring wildness of their eyes, a stranger would immediately set them down as a nation of lunatics. The treachery and malevolence of their character are manifested in their plundering excursions against the negro villages."
Galton's reference to the Damaras illustrates the well-known fact that, even where nature makes an effort at chiselling beautiful features the result is a failure if there is no moral and intellectual culture to inspire them, and this puts the grave-stone on the Concupiscence Theory—for what have moral and intellectual culture to do with carnal desires? A noble soul even possesses the magic power of transforming a plain face into a radiant vision of beauty, the emotion changing not only the expression but the lines of the face. Goethe (Eckermann, 1824) and others have indeed maintained that intellect in a woman does not help a man to fall in love with her. This is true in so far as brains in a woman will not make a man fall in love with her if she is otherwise unattractive or unfeminine. But Goethe forgot that there is such a thing as hereditary intellectual culture incarnated in the face. This, I maintain, makes up more than half of the personal beauty which makes a man fall in love. A girl with good features is twice as beautiful if she is morally pure and has a bright mind. Sometimes a face is accidentally moulded, into such a regular beauty of form that it seems to mirror mental beauty too. A man may fall in love with such a face, but as soon as he finds out that it is inhabited by a stupid or coarse mind he will make haste to fall out again, unless his love was predominantly sensual. I remember once falling in love with a country girl at first sight; her face and figure seemed to me extremely beautiful, except that hard work had enlarged and hardened her hands. But when I found that her intellect was as coarse as her hands, my ardor cooled at once.
If intellect, as revealed in the face, in words, and in actions, did not assist in inspiring the amorous sentiment, it would be as easy to fall in love with a doll-faced, silly girl as with a woman of culture; it would even be possible to fall in love with a statue or with a demented person. Let us imagine a belle who is thrown from a horse and has become insane from the shock. For a time her features will remain as regular, her figure as plump, as before; but the mind will be gone, and with it everything that could make a man fall in love with her. Who has ever heard of a beautiful idiot, of anyone falling in love with an imbecile? The vacant stare, the absence of intellect, make beauty and love alike impossible in such a case.
THE STRANGE GREEK ATTITUDE
The important corollary follows, from all this, that in countries where women receive no education sensual love is the only kind men can feel toward them. Oriental women are of that kind, and so were the ancient Greeks. The Greeks are indeed renowned for their statuary, yet their attitude toward personal beauty was of a very peculiar kind. Their highest ideal was not the feminine but the masculine type, and accordingly we find that it was toward men only that they professed to feel a noble passion. The beauty of the women was regarded merely from a sensual point of view. Their respectable women were deliberately left without education, wherefore their charms can have been at best of a bodily kind and capable of inspiring love of body only. There is a prevalent superstition that the Greeks of the day of Perikles had a class of intelligent women known as hetairai, who were capable of being true companions and inspirers of men; but I shall show, in a later chapter, that the mentality of these women has been ludicrously exaggerated; they were coarse and obscene in their wit and conversation, and their morals were such that no man could have respected them, much less loved them with a pure affection; while the men whom they are supposed to have inspired were in most cases voluptuaries of the most dissolute sort.
A COMPOSITE AND VARIABLE SENTIMENT
Our attempt to answer the question "What is romantic love," has taken up no fewer than two hundred and thirty-five pages, and even this answer is a mere preliminary sketch, the details of which will be supplied in the following chapters, chiefly, it is true, in a negative way, by showing what is not romantic love; for the subject of this book is Primitive Love.
DEFINITION OF LOVE
Can love be defined in one sentence? The Century Dictionary's definition, which is as good as any, is: "Intimate personal affection between individuals of opposite sex capable of intermarriage; the emotional incentive to and normal basis of conjugal union." This is correct enough as far as it goes; but how little it tells us of the nature of love! I have tried repeatedly to condense the essential traits of romantic love into one brief definition, but have not succeeded. Perhaps the following will serve as an approximation. Love is an intense longing for the reciprocal affection and jealously exclusive possession of a particular individual of the opposite sex; a chaste, proud, ecstatic adoration of one who appears a paragon of personal beauty and otherwise immeasurably superior to all other persons; an emotional state constantly hovering between doubt and hope, aggravated in the female heart by the fear of revealing her feelings too soon; a self-forgetful impulse to share the tastes and feelings of the beloved, and to go so far in affectionate and gallant devotion as to eagerly sacrifice, for the other's good, all comfort and life itself if necessary.
These are the essential traits. But romantic love is altogether too complex and variable to be defined in one sentence; and it is this complexity and variability that I wish to emphasize particularly. Eckermann once suggested to Goethe that no two cases of love are quite alike, and the poet agreed with him. They did not, however, explain their seeming paradox, so diametrically opposed to the current notion that love is everywhere and always the same, in individuals as in nations; nor could they have explained it unless they had analyzed love into its component elements as I have done in this volume. With the aid of this analysis it is easy to show how and why love has changed and grown, like other sentiments; to explain how and why the love of a civilized white man must differ from that of an Australian or African savage, just as their faces differ. Since no two races look alike, and no two individuals in the same race, why should their loves be alike? Is not love the heart of the soul and the face merely its mirror? Love is varied through a thousand climatic, racial, family, and cultural peculiarities. It is varied through individual tastes and proclivities. In one case of love admiration of personal beauty may be the strongest ingredient, in another jealous monopoly, in a third self-sacrificing affection, and so on. The permutations and combinations are countless, and hence it is that love-stories are always fresh, since they can be endlessly varied. A lover's varied feelings in relation to the beloved become gradually blended into a sentiment which is a composite photograph of all the emotions she has ever aroused in him. This has given rise to the delusion that love is a simple feeling.
WHY CALLED ROMANTIC
In the introductory chapter of this book I alluded briefly to my reasons for calling pure prematrimonial infatuation romantic love, giving some historic precedents for such a use of the word. We are now in a position to appreciate the peculiar appropriateness of the term. What is the dictionary definition of "romantic"?
"Pertaining to or resembling romance, or an ideal state of things; partaking of the heroic, the marvellous, the supernatural, or the imaginative; chimerical, fanciful, extravagantly enthusiastic."
Every one of these terms applies to love in the sense in which I use the word. Love is ideal, heroic, marvellous, imaginative, chimerical, fanciful, extravagantly enthusiastic; its hyperbolic adoration even gives it a supernatural tinge, for the adored girl seems more like an angel or a fairy than a common mortal. The lover's heroine is as fictitious as any heroine of romance; he considers her the most beautiful and lovable person in the world, though to others she may seem ugly and ill-tempered. Thus love is called romantic, because it is so great a romancer, attributing to the beloved all sorts of perfections which exist only in the lover's fancy. What could be more fantastic than a lover's stubborn preference for a particular individual and his conviction that no one ever loved so frantically as he does? What more extravagant and unreasonable than his imperious desire to completely monopolize her affection, sometimes guarding her jealously even from her girl friends or her nearest relatives? What more romantic than the tortures and tragedies, the mixed emotions, that doubt or jealousy gives rise to? Does not a willing but coyly reserved maiden romance about her feelings? What could be more fanciful and romantic than her shy reserve and coldness when she is longing to throw herself into the lover's arms? Is not her proud belief that her lover—probably as commonplace and foolish a fellow as ever lived—is a hero or a genius a romantic exaggeration? Is not the lover's purity of imagination, though real as a feeling, a romantic illusion, since he craves ultimate possession of her and would be the unhappiest of mortals if she went to a nunnery, though she promised to love him always? What could be more marvellous, more chimerical, than this temporary suppression of a strong appetite at the time when it would be supposed to manifest itself most irresistibly—this distilling of the finer emotions, leaving all the gross, material elements behind? Can you imagine anything more absurdly romantic than the gallant attentions of a man on his knees before a girl whom, with his stronger muscles, he could command as a slave? Who but a romantic lover would obliterate his selfish ego in sympathetic devotion to another, trying to feel her feelings, forgetting his own? Who but a romantic lover would sacrifice his life in the effort to save or please another? A mother would indeed do the same for her child; but the child is of her own flesh and blood, whereas the beloved may have been a stranger until an hour ago. How romantic!
The appropriateness of the word romantic is still further emphasized by the consideration that, just as romantic art, romantic literature, and romantic music are a revolt against artificial rules and barriers to the free expression of feeling, so romantic love is a revolt against the obstacles to free matrimonial choice imposed by parental and social tyranny.
Indeed, I can see only one objection to the use of the word—its frequent application to any strange or exciting incidents, whence some confusion may ensue. But the trouble is obviated by simply bearing in mind the distinction between romantic incidents and romantic feelings which I have summed up in the maxim that a romantic love-story is not necessarily a story of romantic love. Nearly all the tales brought together in this volume are romantic love-stories, but not one of them is a story of romantic love. In the end the antithesis will aid us in remembering the distinction.
In place of "romantic" I might have used the word "sentimental"; but in the first place that word fails to indicate the essentially romantic nature of love, on which I have just dwelt; and secondly, it also is liable to be misunderstood, because of its unfortunate association with the word sentimentality, which is a very different thing from sentiment. The differences between sentiment, sentimentality, and sensuality are indeed important enough to merit a brief chapter of elucidation.
SENSUALITY, SENTIMENTALITY, AND SENTIMENT
From beginnings not yet understood—though Haeckel and others have speculated plausibly on the subject—there has been developed in animals and human beings an appetite which insures the perpetuation of the species as the appetite for food does that of the individual. Both these appetites pass through various degrees of development, from the utmost grossness to a high degree of refinement, from which, however, relapses occur in many individuals. We read of Indians tearing out the liver from living animals and devouring it raw and bloody; of Eskimos eating the contents of a reindeer's stomach as a vegetable dish; and the books of explorers describe many scenes like the following from Baker's Ismailia (275) relating to the antics of negroes after killing a buffalo:
"There was now an extraordinary scene over the carcass; four hundred men scrambling over a mass of blood and entrails, fighting and tearing with each other and cutting off pieces of flesh with their lance-heads, with which they escaped as dogs may retreat with a bone."
APPETITE AND LONGING
What aeons of culture lie between such a scene and a dinner party in Europe or America, with its refined, well-behaved guests, its table etiquette, its varied menu, its choice viands, skilfully cooked and blended so as to bring out the most diverse and delicate flavors, its esthetic features—fine linen and porcelains, silver and cut glass, flowers, lights—its bright conversation, and flow of wit. Yet there are writers who would have us believe that these Indians, Eskimos, and Africans, who manifest their appetite for food in so disgustingly coarse a way, are in their love-affairs as sentimental and aesthetic as we are! In truth they are as gross, gluttonous, and selfish in the gratification of one appetite as in that of the other. To a savage a woman is not an object of chaste adoration and gallant devotion, but a mere bait for wanton lust; and when his lust hath dined he kicks her away like a mangy dog till he is hungry again. In Ploss-Bartels may be found an abundance of facts culled from various sources in all parts of the world, showing that the bestiality of many savages is not even restrained by the presence of spectators. At the phallic and bacchanalian festivals of ancient and Oriental nations all distinctions of rank and all family ties were forgotten in a carnival of lust. Licentious orgies are indeed carried on to this day in our own large cities; but their participants are the criminal classes, and occasionally some foolish young men who would be very much ashamed to have their doings known; whereas the orgies and phallic festivals of savages and barbarians are national or tribal institutions, approved by custom, sanctioned by religion, and indulged in openly by every man and woman in the community; often regardless even of incest.
More shockingly still are the grossness and diabolical selfishness of the savage's carnal appetite revealed by his habit of sacrificing young girls to it years before they have reached the age of puberty. Some details will be found in the chapters on Australia, Africa, and India. Here it may be noted—to indicate the wide prevalence of a custom which it would be unjust to animals to call bestial, because beasts never sink so low—that Borneans, as Schwaner notes, marry off girls from three to five; that in Egypt child-wives of seven or eight can be seen; that Javanese girls may be married at seven; that North American Indians often took brides of ten or eleven, while in Southern Australia girls were appropriated as early as seven. Hottentot girls were not spared after the age of seven, nor were Bushman girls, though they did not become mothers till ten or twelve years old; while Kaffir girls married at eight, Somals at six to eight. The cause of these early marriages is not climatic, as some fancy, but simply, as Roberton has pointed out, the coarseness of the men. The list might be extended indefinitely. In Old Calabar sometimes, we read in Ploss,
"a man who has already several wives may be seen with an infant of two or three weeks on his lap, caressing and kissing it as his wife. Wives of four to six years we found occasionally (in China, Guzuate, Ceylon, and Brazil); from seven to nine years on they are no longer rare, and the years from ten to twelve are a widely prevalent marriage age."
The amorous savage betrays his inferiority to animals not only in his cruel maltreatment of girls before they have reached the age of puberty, but in his ignorance, in most cases, of the simplest caresses and kisses for which we often find corresponding acts in birds and other animals. The nerves of primitive men are too coarse for such a delicate sensation as labial contact, and an embrace would leave them cold. An African approximation to a kiss is described by Baker (Ismailia, 472). He had liberated a number of female slaves, and presently, he says, "I found myself in the arms of a naked beauty, who kissed me almost to suffocation, and, with a most unpleasant embrace, licked both my eyes with her tongue." If we may venture an inference from Mr. A.H. Savage Landor's experience among the aboriginal Ainos of Yezo (Japan), one of the lowest of human races, we may conclude that, in the course of evolution, biting preceded kissing. He had made the acquaintance of an Ainu maiden, the most lovely Ainu girl he had ever come across. They strolled together into the woods, and he sketched her picture. She clutched his hand tightly, and pressed it to her chest:
"I would not have mentioned this small episode if her ways of flirting had not been so extraordinary and funny. Loving and biting went together with her.... As we sat on a stone in the semi-darkness she began by gently biting my fingers without hurting me, as affectionate dogs often do their masters; she then bit my arm, then my shoulder, and when she had worked herself up into a passion she put her arms round my neck and bit my cheeks. It was undoubtedly a curious way of making love, and when I had been bitten all over, and was pretty tired of the new sensation, we retired to our respective homes."
Sensuality has had its own evolution quite apart and distinct from that of love. The ancient Greeks and Romans, and the Orientals, especially the Hindoos, were familiar, thousands of years ago, with refinements and variations of lust beyond which the human imagination cannot go. According to Burton,
"Kornemannus in his book de linea amoris, makes five degrees of lust, out of Lucian belike, which he handles in five chapters, Visus, Colloquium, Convictus, Oscula, Tactus—sight, conference, association, kisses, touch."
All these degrees are abundantly illustrated in Burton, often in a way that would not bear quotation in a modern book intended for general reading.
It is interesting to observe, furthermore, that among the higher barbarians and civilized races, lust has become to a certain extent mentalized through hereditary memory and association. Aristotle made a marvellous anticipation of modern scientific thought when he suggested that what made birds sing in spring was the memory of former seasons of love. In men as in animals, the pleasant experiences of love and marriage become gradually ingrained in the brain, and when a youth reaches the age for love-making the memory of ancestral amorous experiences courses through his nerves vaguely but strongly. He longs for something, he knows not what, and this mental longing is one of the earliest and strongest symptoms of love. But it characterizes all sorts of love; it may accompany pure fancies of the sentimental lover, but it may also be a result of the lascivious imaginings and anticipations of sensualism. It does not, therefore, in itself prove the presence of romantic love; a point on which I must place great emphasis, because certain primitive poems expressing a longing for an absent girl or man have been quoted as positive evidence of romantic love, when as a matter of fact there is nothing to prove that they may not have been inspired by mere sensual desires. I shall cite and comment on these poems in later chapters.
Loss of sleep, loss of appetite, leanness, hollow eyes, groans, griefs, sadness, sighing, sobbing, alternating blushes and pallor, feverish or unequal pulse, suicidal impulses, are other symptoms occurring among such advanced nations as the Greeks and Hindoos and often accepted as evidence of true love; but since, like longing, they also accompany lust and other strong passions or violent emotions, they cannot be accepted as reliable symptoms of romantic love. The only certain criteria of love are to be found in the manifestation of the altruistic factors—sympathy, gallantry, and self-sacrificing affection. Romantic love is, as I have remarked before, not merely an emotional phenomenon, but an active impulse. The true lover does not, like the sensualist and the sentimentalist, ululate his time away in dismal wailing about his bodily aches and tremors, woes and pallors, but lets his feelings expend themselves in multitudinous acts revealing his eagerness to immolate his personal pleasures on the altar of his idol.
It must not be supposed that sensual love is necessarily coarse and obscene. An antique love-scene may in itself be proper and exquisitely poetic without rising to the sphere of romantic love; as when Theocritus declares: "I ask not for the land of Pelops nor for talents of gold. But under this rock will I sing, holding you in my arms, looking at the flocks feeding together toward the Sicilian Sea." A pretty picture; but what evidence is there in it of affection? It is pleasant for a man to hold a girl in his arms while gazing at the Sicilian Sea, even though he does not love her any more than a thousand other girls.
Even in Oriental literature, usually so gross and licentious, one may come across a charmingly poetic yet entirely sensual picture like the following from the Persian Gulistan (339). On a very hot day, when he was a young man, Saadi found the hot wind drying up the moisture of his mouth and melting the marrow of his bones. Looking for a refuge and refreshment, he beheld a moon-faced damsel of supreme loveliness in the shaded portico of a mansion:
"She held in her hand a goblet of snow-cold water, into which she dropt some sugar, and tempered it with spirit of wine; but I know not whether she scented it with attar, or sprinkled it with a few blossoms from her own rosy cheek. In short, I received the beverage from her idol-fair hand: and having drunk it off, found myself restored to new life."
Ward writes (115) that the following account of Sharuda, the daughter of Brumha, translated from the Shiva Purana, may serve as a just description of a perfect Hindoo beauty. This girl was of a yellow color; had a nose like the flower of a secamum; her legs were taper, like the plantain-tree; her eyes large, like the principal leaf of the lotos; her eyebrows extended to her ears; her lips were red, like the young leaves of the mango-tree; her face was like the full moon; her voice like the sound of the cuckoo; her throat was like that of a pigeon; her loins narrow, like those of a lion; her hair hung in curls down to her feet; her teeth were like the seeds of the pomegranate; and her gait like that of a drunken elephant or a goose.
There is nothing coarse in this description, yet every detail is purely sensual, and so it is with the thousands of amorous rhapsodies of Hindoo, Persian, Turkish, Arabic, and other Eastern poets. Concerning the Persians, Dr. Polak remarks (I., 206) that the word Ischk (love) is always associated with the idea of carnality (Was'l). Of the Arabs, Burckardt says that "the passion of love is indeed much talked of by the inhabitants of the towns; but I doubt whether anything is meant by them more than the grossest animal desire." In his letters from the East the keen-eyed Count von Moltke notes that the Turk "passes over all the preliminary rigmarole of falling in love, paying court, languishing, revelling in ecstatic joy, as so much faux frais, and goes straight to the point."
WILES OF AN ORIENTAL GIRL
But is the German field-marshal quite just to the Turk? I have before me a passage which seems to indicate that these Orientals do know a thing or two about the "rigmarole of love-making." It is cited by Kremer from the Kitab almowascha, a book treating of social matters in Baghdad. Its author devotes a special chapter to the dangers lurking in female singers and musical slaves, in the course of which he says:
"If one of these girls meets a rich young man, she sets about ensnaring him, makes eyes at him, invites him with gestures, sings for him ... drinks the wine he left in his cup, throws kisses with her hands, till she has the poor fellow in her net and he is enamoured. ... Then she sends messages to him and continues her crafty arts, lets him understand that she is losing sleep for love of him, is pining for him; maybe she sends him a ring, or a lock of her hair, a paring of her nails, a splinter from her lute, or part of her toothbrush, or a piece of fragrant gum (chewed by her) as a substitute for a kiss, or a note written and folded with her own hands and tied with a string from her lute, with a tearstain on it; and finally sealed with Ghalija, her ring, on which some appropriate words are carved."
Having captured her victim, she makes him give her valuable presents till his purse is empty, whereupon she discards him.
Was Count Moltke, then, wrong? Have we here, after all, the sentimental symptoms of romantic love? Let us apply the tests provided by our analysis of love—tests as reliable as those which chemists use to analyze fluids or gases. Did the Baghdad music-girl prefer that man to all other individuals? Did she want to monopolize him jealously? Oh, no! any man, however old and ugly, would have suited her, provided he had plenty of money. Was she coy toward him? Perhaps; but not from a feeling of modesty and timidity inspired by love, but to make him more ardent and ready to pay. Was she proud of his love? She thought him a fool. Were her feelings toward him chaste and pure? As chaste and pure as his. Did she sympathize with his pleasures and pains? She dismissed him as soon as his purse was empty, and looked about for another victim. Were his presents the result of gallant impulses to please her, or merely advance payment for favors expected? Would he have sacrificed his life to save her any more than she would hers to save him? Did he respect her as an immaculate superior being, adore her as an angel from above—or look on her as an inferior, a slave in rank, a slave to passion?
The obvious moral of this immoral episode is that it is not permissible to infer the existence of anything higher than sensual love from the mere fact that certain romantic tricks are associated with the amorous dalliance of Orientals, or Greeks and Romans. Drinking from the same cup, throwing kisses, sending locks of hair or tear-stained letters, adjusting a foot-stool, or fanning a heated brow, are no doubt romantic incidents, but they are no proof of romantic feeling for the reason that they are frequently associated with the most heartless and mercenary sensuality. The coquetry of the Baghdad girl is romantic, but there is no sentiment in it. Yet—and here we reach the most important aspect of that episode—there is an affectation of sentiment in that sending of locks, notes, and splinters from her lute; and this affectation of sentiment is designated by the word sentimentality. In the history of love sentimentality precedes sentiment; and for a proper understanding of the history and psychology of love it is as important to distinguish sentimentality from sentiment as it is to differentiate love from lust.
When Lowell wrote, "Let us be thankful that in every man's life there is a holiday of romance, an illumination of the senses by the soul, that makes him a poet while it lasts," he made a sad error in assuming that there is such a holiday of romance in every man's life; millions never enjoy it; but the words I have italicized—"an illumination of the senses by the soul"—are one of those flashes of inspiration which sometimes enable a poet to give a better description of a psychic process than professional philosophers have put forth.
From one point of view the love sentiment may be called an illumination of the senses by the soul. Elsewhere Lowell has given another admirable definition: "Sentiment is intellectualized emotion, emotion precipitated, as it were, in pretty crystals of thought." Excellent, too, is J.F. Clarke's definition: "Sentiment is nothing but thought blended with feeling; thought made affectionate, sympathetic, moral." The Century Dictionary throws further light on this word:
"Sentiment has a peculiar place between thought and feeling, in which it also approaches the meaning of principle. It is more than that feeling which is sensation or emotion, by containing more of thought and by being more lofty, while it contains too much feeling to be merely thought, and it has large influence over the will; for example, the sentiment of patriotism; the sentiment of honor; the world is ruled by sentiment. The thought in a sentiment is often that of duty, and is penetrated and exalted by feeling."
Herbert Spencer sums up the matter concisely (Psych., II., 578) when he speaks of "that remoteness from sensations and appetites and from ideas of such sensations and appetites which is the common trait of the feelings we call sentiments."
It is hardly necessary to point out that in our Baghdad girl's love-affairs there is no "remoteness from sensations and appetites," no "illumination of the senses by the soul," no "intellectualized emotion," no "thought made affectionate, sympathetic, moral." But there is in it, as I have said, a touch of sentimentality. If sentiment is properly defined as "higher feeling," sentimentality is "affectation of fine or tender feeling or exquisite sensibility." Heartless coquetry, prudery, mock modesty, are bosom friends of sentimentality. While sentiment is the noblest thing in the world, sentimentality is its counterfeit, its caricature; there is something theatrical, operatic, painted-and-powdered about it; it differs from sentiment as astrology differs from astronomy, alchemy from chemistry, the sham from the real, hypocrisy from sincerity, artificial posing from natural grace, genuine affection from selfish attachment.
RARITY OF TRUE LOVE
Sentimentality, as I have said, precedes sentiment in the history of love, and it has been a special characteristic of certain periods, like that of the Alexandrian Greeks and their Roman imitators, to whom we shall recur in a later chapter, and the mediaeval Troubadours and Minnesingers. To the present day sentimentality in love is so much more abundant than sentiment that the adjective sentimental is commonly used in an uncomplimentary sense, as in the following passage from one of Krafft-Ebing's books (Psch. Sex., 9):
"Sentimental love runs the risk of degenerating into caricature, especially in cases where the sensual ingredient is weak.... Such love has a flat, saccharine tang. It is apt to become positively ludicrous, whereas in other cases the manifestations of this strongest of all feelings inspire in us sympathy, respect, awe, according to circumstances."
Steele speaks in The Lover (23, No. 5) of the extraordinary skill of a poet in making a loose people "attend to a Passion which they never, or that very faintly, felt in their own Bosoms." La Rochefoucauld wrote: "It is with true love as with ghosts; everybody speaks of it, but few have seen it." A writer in Science expressed his belief that romantic love, as described in my first book, could really be experienced only by men of genius. I think that this makes the circle too small; yet in these twelve years of additional observation I have come to the conclusion that even at this stage of civilization only a small proportion of men and women are able to experience full-fledged romantic love, which seems to require a special emotional or esthetic gift, like the talent for music. A few years ago I came across the following in the London Tidbits which echoes the sentiments of multitudes:
"Latour, who sent a pathetic complaint the other day that though he wished to do so he was unable to fall in love, has called forth a sympathetic response from a number of readers of both sexes. These ladies and gentlemen write to say that they also, like Latour, cannot understand how it is that they are not able to feel any experience of tender passion which they read about so much in novels, and hear about in actual life."
At the same time there are not a few men of genius, too, who never felt true love in their own hearts. Herder believed that Goethe was not capable of genuine love, and Grimm, too, thought that Goethe had never experienced a self-absorbing passion. Tolstoi must have been ever a stranger to genuine love, for to him it seems a degrading thing even in marriage. A suggestive and frank confession may be found in the literary memoirs of Goncourt. At a small gathering of men of letters Goncourt remarked that hitherto love had not been studied scientifically in novels. Zola thereupon declared that love was not a specific emotion; that it does not affect persons so absolutely as the writers say; that the phenomena characterizing it are also found in friendship, in patriotism, and that the intensity of this emotion is due entirely to the anticipation of carnal enjoyment. Turgenieff objected to these views; in his opinion love is a sentiment which has a unique color of its own—a quality differentiating it from all other sentiments—eliminating the lover's own personality, as it were. The Russian novelist obviously had a conception of the purity of love, for Goncourt reports him as "speaking of his first love for a woman as a thing entirely spiritual, having nothing in common with materiality." And now follows Goncourt's confession:
"In all this, the thing to regret is that neither Flaubert ... nor Zola, nor myself, have ever been very seriously in love and that we are therefore unable to describe love. Turgenieff alone could have done that, but he lacks precisely the critical sense which we could have exercised in this matter had we been in love after his fashion."
The vast majority of the human race has not yet got beyond the sensual stage of amorous evolution, or realized the difference between sentimentality and sentiment. There is much food for thought in this sentence from Henry James's charming essay on France's most poetic writer—Theophile Gautier:
"It has seemed to me rather a painful exhibition of the prurience of the human mind that in most of the notices of the author's death (those at least published in England and America), this work alone [Mile. de Maupin] should have been selected as the critic's text."
Readers are interested only in emotions with which they are familiar by experience. Howells's refined love-scenes have often been sneered at by men who like raw whiskey but cannot appreciate the delicate bouquet of Chambertin. As Professor Ribot remarks: in the higher regions of science, art, religion, and morals there are emotions so subtle and elevated that
"not more than one individual in a hundred thousand or even in a million can experience them. The others are strangers to them, or do not know of their existence except vaguely, from what they hear about them. It is a promised land, which only the select can enter."
I believe that romantic love is a sentiment which more than one person in a million can experience, and more than one in a hundred thousand. How many more, I shall not venture to guess. All the others know love only as a sensual craving. To them "I love you" means "I long for you, covet you, am eager to enjoy you"; and this feeling is not love of another but self-love, more or less disguised—the kind of "love" which makes a young man shoot a girl who refuses him. The mediaeval writer Leon Hebraeus evidently knew of no other when he defined love as "a desire to enjoy that which is good"; nor Spinoza when he defined it as laetetia concomitante idea externae causae—a pleasure accompanied by the thought of its external cause.
MISTAKES REGARDING CONJUGAL LOVE
Having distinguished romantic or sentimental love from sentimentality on one side and sensuality on the other, it remains to show how it differs from conjugal affection.
HOW ROMANTIC LOVE IS METAMORPHOSED
On hearing the words "love letters," does anybody ever think of a man's letters to his wife? No more than of his letters to his mother. He may love both his wife and his mother dearly, but when he writes love letters he writes them to his sweetheart. Thus, public opinion and every-day literary usage clearly recognize the difference between romantic love and conjugal affection. Yet when I maintained in my first book that romantic love differs as widely from conjugal affection as maternal love differs from friendship; that romantic love is almost as modern as the telegraph, the railway, and the electric light; and that perhaps the main reasons why no one had anticipated me in an attempt to write a book to prove this, were that no distinction had heretofore been made between conjugal and romantic love, and that the apparent occurrence of noble examples of conjugal attachment among the ancient Greeks had obscured the issue—there was a chorus of dissenting voices. "The distinction drawn by him between romantic and conjugal love," wrote one critic, "seems more fanciful than real." "He will not succeed," wrote another, "in convincing anybody that romantic and conjugal love differ in kind instead of only in degree or place"; while a third even objected to my theory as "essentially immoral!"
Mr. W.D. Howells, on the other hand, accepted my distinction, and in a letter to me declared that he found conjugal affection an even more interesting field of study than romantic love. Why, indeed, should anyone be alarmed at the distinction I made? Is not a man's feeling toward his sweetheart different from his feeling toward his mother or sister? Why then should it be absurd or "immoral" to maintain that it differs from his feeling toward his wife? What I maintain is that romantic love disappears gradually, to be replaced, as a rule, by conjugal affection, which is sometimes a less intense, at other times a more intense, feeling than the emotions aroused during courtship. The process may be compared to a modulation in music, in which some of the tones in a chord are retained while others are displaced by new ones. Such modulations are delightful, and the new harmony may be as beautiful as the old. A visitor to Wordsworth's home wrote:
"I saw the old man walking in the garden with his wife. They were both quite old, and he was almost blind; but they seemed like sweethearts courting, they were so tender to each other and attentive."
A husband may be, and should be, quite as tender, as attentive, as gallant and self-sacrificing, as sympathetic, proud, and devoted as a lover; yet all his emotions will appear in a new orchestration, as it were. In the gallant attentions of a loving husband, the anxious eagerness to please is displaced by a pleasant sense of duty and gentlemanly courtesy. He still prefers his wife to all other women and wants a monopoly of her love; but this feeling has a proprietary tinge that was absent before. Jealousy, too, assumes a new aspect; it may, temporarily, bring back the uncertainty of courtship, but the emotion is colored by entirely different ideas: jealousy in a lover is a green-eyed monster gnawing merely at his hopes, and not, as in a husband, threatening to destroy his property and his family honor—which makes a great difference in the quality of the feeling and its manifestation. The wife, on her part, has no more use for coyness, but can indulge in the luxury of bestowing gallant attentions which before marriage would have seemed indelicate or forward, while after marriage they are a pleasant duty, rising in some cases to heroic self-sacrifice.
If even within the sphere of romantic love no two cases are exactly alike, how could love before marriage be the same as after marriage when so many new experiences, ideas, and associations come into play? Above all, the feelings relating to the children bring an entirely new group of tones into the complex harmony of affection. The intimacies of married life, the revelation of characteristics undiscovered before marriage, the deeper sympathy, the knowledge that theirs is "one glory an' one shame"—these and a hundred other domestic experiences make romantic love undergo a change into something that may be equally rich and strange but is certainly quite different. A wife's charms are different from a girl's and inspire a different kind of love. The husband loves
Those virtues which, before untried, The wife has added to the bride,
as Samuel Bishop rhymes it. In their predilection for maidens, poets, like novelists, have until recently ignored the wife too much. But Cowper sang:
What is there in the vale of life Half so delightful as a wife, When friendship, love and peace combine To stamp the marriage bond divine? The stream of pure and genuine love Derives its current from above; And earth a second Eden shows, Where'er the healing water flows.
Some of the specifically romantic ingredients of love, on the other hand—adoration, hyperbole, the mixed moods of hope and despair—do not normally enter into conjugal affection. No one would fail to see the absurdity of a husband's exclaiming
O that I were a glove upon that hand That I might touch that cheek.
He may touch that cheek, and kiss it too—and that makes a tremendous difference in the tone and tension of his feelings. Unlike the lover, the husband does not think, feel, and speak in perpetual hyperboles. He does not use expressions like "beautiful tyrant, fiend angelical," or speak of
The cruel madness of love The honey of poisonous flowers.
There is no madness or cruelty in conjugal love: in its normal state it is all peace, contentment, happiness, while romantic love, in its normal state, is chiefly unrest, doubt, fear, anxiety, torture and anguish of heart—with alternating hours of frantic elation—until the Yes has been spoken.
The emotions of a husband are those of a mariner who has entered into the calm harbor of matrimony with his treasure safe and sound, while the romantic lover is as one who is still on the high seas of uncertainty, storm-tossed one moment, lifted sky-high on a wave of hope, the next in a dark abyss of despair. It is indeed lucky that conjugal affection does differ so widely from romantic love; such nervous tension, doubt, worry, and constant friction between hope and despair would, if continued after marriage, make life a burden to the most loving couples.
WHY SAVAGES VALUE WIVES
The notion that genuine romantic love does not undergo a metamorphosis in marriage is the first of five mistakes I have undertaken to correct in this chapter. The second is summed up in Westermarck's assertion (359-60) that it is
"impossible to believe that there ever was a time when conjugal affection was entirely wanting in the human race ... it seems, in its most primitive form, to have been as old as marriage itself. It must be a certain degree of affection that induces the male to defend the female during her period of pregnancy."
Now I concede that natural selection must have developed at an early period in the history of man, as in the lower animals, some kind of an attachment between male and females. A wife could not seek her daily food in the forest and at the same time defend herself and her helpless babe against wild beasts and human enemies. Hence natural selection favored those groups in which the males attached themselves to a particular female for a longer time than the breeding-season, defending her from enemies and giving her a share of their game. But from this admitted fact to the inference that it is "affection" that makes the husband defend his wife, there is a tremendous logical skip not warranted by the situation. Instead of making such an assumption offhand, the scientific method requires us to ask if there is not some other way of accounting for the facts more in accordance with the selfish disposition and habits of savages. The solution of the problem is easily found. A savage's wife is his property, which he has acquired by barter, service, fighting, or purchase, and which he would be a fool not to protect against injury or rivals. She is to him a source of utility, comfort, and pleasure, which is reason enough why he should not allow a lion to devour her or a rival to carry her off. She is his cook, his slave, his mule; she fetches wood and water, prepares the food, puts up the camp, and when it is time to move carries the tent and kitchen utensils, as well as her child to the next place. If his motive in protecting her against men and beasts were affection, he would not thus compel her to do all the work while he walks unburdened to the next camping-place.
Apart from these home comforts there are selfish reasons enough why savages should take the trouble to protect their wives and rear children. In Australia it is a universal custom to exchange a daughter for a new wife, discarding or neglecting the old one; and the habit of treating children as merchandise prevails in various other parts of the world. The gross utilitarianism of South African marriages is illustrated in Dr. Fritsch's remarks on the Ama-Zulus. "As these women too are slaves, there is not much to say about love, marriage, or conjugal life," he says. The husband pays for his wife, but expects her to repay him for his outlay by hard work and by bearing children whom he can sell. "If she fails to make herself thus useful, if she falls ill, becomes weak, or remains childless, he often sends her back to her father and demands restitution of the cattle he had paid for her;" and his demand has to be complied with. Lord Randolph Churchill (249) was informed by a native of Mashonaland that he had his eye on a girl whom he desired to marry, because "if he was lucky, his wife might have daughters whom he would be able to sell in exchange for goats." Samuel Baker writes in one of his books of African exploration (Ism., 341):
"Girls are always purchased if required as wives. It would be quite impossible to obtain a wife for love from any tribe that I have visited. 'Blessed is he that hath his quiver full of them' (daughters). A large family of girls is a source of wealth to the father, as he sells each daughter for twelve or fifteen cows to her suitor."
Of the Central African, Macdonald says (I., 141):
"The more wives he has the richer he is. It is his wives that maintain him. They do all his ploughing, milling, cooking, etc. They may be viewed as superior servants, who combine all the capacities of male servants and female servants in Britain—who do all his work and ask no wages."
We need not assume a problematic affection to explain why such a man marries.
But the savage's principal marriage motive is, of course, sensualism. If he wants to own a particular girl he must take care of her. If he tires of her it is easy enough to get rid of her or to make her a drudge pure and simple, while her successor enjoys his caresses. Speaking of Pennsylvania Indians, Buchanan remarks naively (II., 95) that "the wives are the true servants of their husbands; otherwise the men are very affectionate to them." On another page (102) he inadvertently explains what he means by this paradox: "the ancient women are used for cooks, barbers, and other services, the younger for dalliance." In other words, Buchanan makes the common mistake of applying the altruistic word affection to what is nothing more than selfish indulgence of the sensual appetite. So does Pajeken when he tells us in the Ausland about the "touching tenderness" of a Crow chief toward a fourteen-year-old girl whom he had just added to the number of his wives.
"While he was in the wigwam he did not leave her a moment. With his own hands he adorned her with chains, and strings of teeth and pearls, and he found a special pleasure in combing her black, soft, silken hair. He gambolled with her like a child and rocked her on his knees, telling her stories. Of his other wives he demanded the utmost respect in their treatment of his little one."
This reference to the other wives ought to have opened Pajeken's eyes as to the silliness of speaking of the "touching" tenderness of the Crow chief to his latest favorite. In a few years she was doomed to be discarded, like the others, in favor of a new victim of his carnal appetite. Affection is entirely out of the question in such cases.
The Malayans of Sumatra have, as Carl Bock tells us (314), a local custom allowing a wife to marry again if her faithless spouse has deserted her for three months:
"The early age at which marriage is contracted is an obstacle to any real affection between couples; for girls to be wives at fourteen is a common occurrence; indeed, that age may be put down as the average age of first marriage. The girls are then frequently good-looking, but hard work and the cares of maternity soon stamp their faces with the marks of age, and spoil their figures, and then the Malay husband forsakes his wife, if, indeed, he keeps her so long."
Marriage with these people is, as Bock adds, a mere matter of pounds, shillings, and pence. His servant had married a "grass-widow" of three months' desertion. But
"before she had enjoyed her new title six weeks, a coolness sprang up between her and her husband. I inquired the reason, and she naively confessed that her husband had no more rupees to give her, and so she did not care for him any longer."
Concerning Damara women Galton writes (197):
"They were extremely patient, though not feminine, according to our ideas: they had no strong affections either for spouse or children; in fact, the spouse was changed almost weekly, and I seldom knew without inquiry who the pro tempore husband of each lady was at any particular time."
Among the Singhalese, if a wife is sick and can no longer minister to her husband's comforts and pleasure he repudiates her. Bailey says that this heartless desertion of a sick wife is "the worst trait in the Kandyan character, and the cool and unconcerned manner in which they themselves allude to it shows that it is as common as it is cruel."
"How can a man be contented with one wife," exclaimed an Arab sheik to Sir Samuel Baker (N.T.A., 263). "It is ridiculous, absurd." And then he proceeded to explain why, in his opinion, monogamy is such an absurdity:
"What is he to do when she becomes old? When she is young, if very lovely, perhaps, he might be satisfied with her, but even the young must some day grow old, and the beautiful must fade. The man does not fade like a woman; therefore, as he remains the same for many years, Nature has arranged that the man shall have young wives to replace the old; does not the prophet allow it?"
He then pointed out what further advantage there was in having several wives:
"This one carries water, that one grinds corn; this makes the bread; the last does not do much, as she is the youngest and my favorite; and if they neglect their work they get a taste of this!"
shaking a long and tolerably thick stick.
There you have the typical male polygamist with his reasons frankly stated—sensual gratification and utilitarianism.
MOURNING TO ORDER
One of the most gossipy and least critical of all writers on primitive man, Bonwick, declares (97), in describing Tasmanian funerals, that
"the affectionate nature of women appeared on such melancholy occasions.... The women not only wept, but lacerated their bodies with sharp shells and stones, even burning their thighs with fire-sticks.... The hair cut off in grief was thrown upon the mound."
Descriptions of the howling and tortures to which savages subject themselves as part of their funeral rites abound in works of travel, and although every school-boy knows that the deepest waters are silent, it is usually assumed that these howling antics betray the deep grief and affection of the mourners. Now I do not deny that the lower races do feel grief at the loss of a relative or friend; it is one of the earliest emotions to develop in mankind. What I object to in particular is the notion that the penances to which widows submit on the death of their husbands indicate deep and genuine conjugal affection. As a matter of fact, these penances are not voluntary but prescribed, each widow in a tribe being expected to indulge in the same howlings and mutilations, so that this circumstance alone would make it impossible to say whether her lamentations over her late spouse came under the head of affection, fondness, liking, or attachment, or whether they are associated with indifference or hatred. It is instructive to note that, in descriptions of mourning widows, the words "must" or "obliged to" nearly always occur. Among the Mandans, we read in Catlin (I., 95), "in mourning, like the Crows and most other tribes, the women are obliged to crop their hair all off; and the usual term of that condolence is until the hair has grown again to its former length." The locks of the men (who make them do this), "are of much greater importance," and only one or two can be spared. According to Schomburgk, on the death of her husband, an Arawak wife must cut her hair; and until this has again grown to a certain length she cannot remarry. (Spencer, D.S., 20.) Among the Patagonians, "the widow, or widows, of the dead, are obliged to mourn and fast for a whole year after the death of their husbands." They must abstain from certain kinds of food, and must not wash their faces and hands for a whole year; while "during the year of mourning they are forbidden to marry." (Falkner, 119.) The grief is all prescribed and regulated according to tribal fancy. The Brazilians "repeat the lamentation for the dead twice a day." (Spix and Martins, II., 250.) The Comanches
"mourn for the dead systematically and periodically with great noise and vehemence; at which time the female relatives of the deceased scarify their arms and legs with sharp flints until the blood trickles from a thousand pores. The duration of these lamentations depends on the quality and estimation of the deceased; varying from three to five or seven days."
(Schoolcraft, I., 237.) James Adair says in his History of the American Indians (188), "They compel the widow to act the part of the disconsolate dove, for the irreparable loss of her mate."
In Dahomey, during mourning "the weeping relatives must fast and refrain from bathing," etc. (Burton, II., 164.) In the Transvaal, writes the missionary Posselt,
"there are a number of heathenish customs which the widows are obliged to observe. There is, first, the terrible lamentation for the dead. Secondly, the widows must allow themselves to be fumigated," etc.
Concerning the Asiatic Turks Vambery writes that the women are not allowed to attend the funeral, but "are obliged meanwhile to remain in their tent, and, while lamenting incessantly, scratch their cheeks with their nails, i.e., mar their beauty." The widow must lament or sing dirges for a whole year, etc. Chippewa widows are obliged to fast and must not comb their hair for a year or wear any ornament. A Shushwap widow must not allow her shadow to fall on any one, and must bed her head on thorns. Bancroft notes (I., 731) that among the Mosquito Indians