564 Life and Letters of Francis Galton
He will -soon be dangerous, and have to be converted into ham. He does not smell a bit in the open. His hair is thick and bristly and of a rich brown, and his head and mane ("huge" is I think the technical word) are grand for his size. I like these Basque folk much, they are so quiet and orderly and substantial. But as for their language, it is impossible to a stranger.
Eva asks me on her part to say that if one of the. steel spectacle cases that your mother wore, which were very characteristic, happens to be available, she would prize it much as a souvenir.
I am glad the Report is so nearly ready. What a long time always intervenes between the time when a book is apparently ready and that at which it actually appears. I hope that the .new Ministry will go in for research. Best love to M. L. You both need a complete change of scene and a rest. Ever affectionately, FRANCIS GALTON.
HOTEL DE LA RHUNE, ASCAIN, BASSES PYRENEES, FRANCE.'
February 16,-10 a.m., 1906; act. 84 yrs. 8 hrs.
DEAREST MILLY, I had not-realised before receiving your letter of a week ago how anxious you have been about the eyesight. The Doctor's favourable verdict must have given great relief. A change of spectacles may do much. I must write in a much clearer and bolder hand, like this*. 'We are in the midst of bad weather, February being the worst month in these parts, and I have been house-bound for days together, but very cosy and very happy with plenty to do. They feed us so well and the cooking is so juicy and good. The place is said to be beautiful in summer, now of course' it is bare but some fields are very green.' The typed copy of my "Re semblance" paper arrived yesterday, so I hope to hear from Karl- Pearson in two or three days. Enclosed I-send -a pencilled resume of the chief points in it, in case you care to read it. It is not worth keeping. It does one good to have too try to explain oneself in a clear way and briefly, so this pencilled scrap was a self-discipline. The late John Murray, the publisher, advised those who were about to write for the first time each to keep some one friend in constant view, and to fancy he was writing to that friend. You ask about that German translation so I send' the only copy' I as yet have, but more are promised; . in all probability I shall not want this again, so pray keep it until I write. (See postscript.) That blessed book on, Noteworthy Families. is not even yet published, but covers were sent to me to choose from, which I did. It looked quite nice. The report of the Louping ill, etc. Committee, of which Edward Wheler is an active member, is on the verge of publication, and is an admirable piece of scientific work. Part III mainly written by himself is a summary of the rest. It is most instructive. I think the results will form an epoch in the progress of knowledge of disease and how to cure it. The strangest part of all is that the blood of sheep differs notably in its quality at two different seasons of the year. In one it kills a particular sort of microbe, in the other it does not. It is equally the case whether the experiment be made on the live sheep, or in a test-tube with cultured microbes. I fondly believe that the time will come when doctors, after feeling pulse and taking temperature, will ram a sharp tube into the patient and, take from him a drachm or so of blood to experiment with. I oughtto have begun by thanking you for your kind, birthday letter. I am now four times as old as when legally a man, viz. 21 years, and cannot in retrospect make up my mind which of these four spaces has left most impression. They all seem very long and very different. I don't quite catch the point of the following remark, which has been sent me by letter; perhaps you or Amy can. It is that there are three sorts of religion : Religion, Irreligion and Bi-religion. It was sent me by a shrewd person as containing a shrewd meaning, which I however cannot discover. Best loves to you all. Ever affectionately, FRANCIS GALTON.
P.S. Alas, I can't send the German article by book-post because I have pasted the writer's letter inside it.
Enclosed with letter of February 16th.
Measurement of Visual Resemblance.
When a person is walking towards you the first thing you notice in his face is its general shape, which may be the same as that of many people (I leave all the rest of his body now out of account). When he comes nearer, the general .markings of the face are seen, but not enough
Change of handwriting, but it was nott maintained.