CONSISTING OF INSTRUMENTS FOR MEASURING AND TESTING
THE CHIEF PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS
OF THE HUMAN BODY.
DESIGNED UNDER THE DIRECTION OF MR. FRANCIS GALTON,
AND MANUFACTURED AND SOLD BY
THE CAMBRIDGE SCIENTIFIC INSTRUMENT COMPANY,
ST TIBB'S ROW, CAMBRIDGE, ENGLAND.
First edition, Cambridge Scientific Instrument Company, 1887.
A revised edition was printed in 1889.
PDF Facsimile (~500Kb) by http://galton.org
Anthropometric Apparatus. Instruments for measuring and testing the chief physical characteristics of the human body, on the same general principles as those exhibited and employed by Mr. Francis Galton at the recent Health Exhibition in London, but with considerable improvements made in concert with him.
The use of periodical measurements is two-fold, personal and statistical. The one shows the progress of the individual ; the other, that of portions of the nation, or of the nation as a whole.
Personal use. Periodical measurements afford a sure test of the normal physical development of the child or youth. They draw attention to faults in rearing, to be diligently sought for and remedied lest the future efficiency of the child when it grows to manhood or womanhood be compromised. There are hundreds of thousands of cases in which eye-sight has been heedlessly injured beyond repair by pure neglect; of lopsided growth, and of stunted chest capacity, which measurement would have manifested in their earlier stages, and which could have been checked if attended to in time. The necessity of periodical measurement is thoroughly recognised by those who have studied the subject of health, but it has not yet obtained that hold in England on popular opinion which it deserves, and which it will hereafter undoubtedly exercise. It seems strange that it should be neglected at any school or university in England. It is widely recognised in those of the United States.
Statistical use. Anthropometric records, when treated statistically, show the efficiency of the nation as a whole and in its several parts, and the direction in which it is changing, whether for better or worse. They enable us to compare the influences upon bodily development of different occupations, residences, schools, races, &c. There is great scientific need for a more systematic registration of physical measurements to afford a sufficiently wide basis for general inferences. Their value is indisputable, the cost of making them is trifling, and the facility of registration in any permanent institution is obvious.
The use of preserving even the minor personal data is considerable, such as those of the colour of the Eyes and Hair, which appear from the large collection of statistics published by the American War Office in 1875, under the direction of Dr. Baxter, to be associated with a marked tendency to various forms of disease or to immunity from them. If then, even the colour of the eyes and hair is a proper subject for anthropometric record, much more may we feel assured that the more obviously important personal data deserve measurement and registration.
The following list indicates the uses of the instruments thus completed or in course of construction, and the characteristics they are intended to test, while further on is a more detailed statement as to the method of using them.