108 ENGLISH MEN OF SCIENCE. [cHHAP.
to the advanced philosopher who has chiefly to reflect, and who knows where to refer for information. Memory is usually defective in persons of small ability, but not invariably so ; even among idiots it may be sharp. There are two cases of this recorded in the autobiography of the late Mrs. Somerville (p. 92.) One cannot but suspect some exaggeration in the statements, and feel regret that the cases were not fully inquired into, both as regards the precise power of memory, and the degree of development of the other faculties. She says of the first idiot, "He never failed to go to kirk, and on returning home could repeat the sermon word for
word, saying, " Here the minister coughed, here he stopped to blow his nose." She then speaks of " another idiot who knew the Bible so perfectly, that if you asked him where such a verse was to be found, he could tell without hesitation and repeat the chapter."
I have sorted such of the replies as are of interest, into the following groups. (7.) Good Verbal memory, as for prose and poetry, 6 cases;