Recognized HTML document
Previous Index Next

Correlation and Application of Statistics to Problems of Heredity 113

chiefly because, although I doubt the accuracy of some of the processes adopted, it is highly suggestive for kindred researches, and appears to have attracted little of the attention it deserved at the time of its publication in Nature.

Closely associated with the material on which the above memoir was based is a letter Galton published in The Times, November 17, 1904, with regard to the character and ancestry of Lord Northbrook, who had died on the 15th of the same month. Galton was in a position to comment on the character of Lord Northbrook, for he had served on a council* with him for two years and noted his "rare combination of thoroughness and quickness," which were reported family characteristics of the Barings. Galton was also well acquainted with the family history of the Barings for Lord Northbrook as a Fellow of the Royal Society had replied to Galton's schedule very amply and sympathetically. A full pedigree of the Barings as a noteworthy family would be well worth working up. Like many families of distinction in Great Britain, the Barings in the direct male line show foreign blood.

Noteworthy Families.

We now turn to the work which embraces the data on which the preceding two communications were based. The material was collected by schedules issued by Galton which were filled in by about half the Fellows and returned to him. From these Mr Edgar Schustert selected the families in which there were at least three noteworthy kinsmen, and formed lists of their achievements on Galton's model. He thus compiled the brief biographical notices of sixty-six noteworthy families which fill about two-thirds of the volume. The book is entitled

Noteworthy Families (Modern Science). An Index to Kinships in Near Degrees between Persons whose Achievements are honourable and have been publicly recorded. By Francis Galton, D.C.L., F.R.S., Hon. D.Sc. (Camb.) and Edgar Schuster, Galton Research Fellow in National Eugenics. Vol. r of the Publications of the Eugenics Record Office of the University of London. John Murray : London.

The intention was to collect similar material in other fields and publish corresponding volumes for Literature, Art, Politics, etc. Some of this material was actually collected t.

If we consider briefly the material compiled by Schuster one is bound to confess that it is disappointing. As only about half the Fellows replied, and the families of only 63 are discussed, it is clear that we cannot look upon the results as representative of the Royal Society, much less of British

* Probably that of the Royal Geographical Society of which Lord Northbrook was at one time President.

t Mr Schuster had, in October 1904, been elected to the first Research Fellowship in National Eugenics founded by Francis Galton in connection with the University of London: see Chapter XVI below.

+ "This volume is the first instalment of a work that admits of wide extension." Galton's

Preface, p. ix.

P u III   15

Previous Index Next