622 Life and Letters of Francis Galton Worth defined by Class Place.
The phrase that so and so ranks among the upper half, quarter, tenth or other division of a class consisting of a hundred persons is a definite fact and of substantial importance.
I have often had occasion to comment on this, but propose now to elaborate the idea somewhat more fully.
The comparison of the merits of alternative objects is a familiar act and the classification of a large number of objects of like kind in order of merit, however defined, is merely a prolonged application of this power. Class lists are familiar in competitive examinations, when candidates are given marks, by which their order of merit is expressed according to the judgment of the examiner, but the faculty of accurate classifying is far more widely exercised when there are many competitors for a coveted place and only one or a few vacancies. No electorate doubts its capacity of so placing the men that the right ones shall be on the whole generally approved of.
The selective process is gone through in renting a house, or buying an article, a dress, wine, a horse, a pianoforte and, as a rule, whenever a purchase has to be made. It is gone through with care in selecting an agent, a governess, or other employees ; Ministers of State, Heads of Departments, Bishops, Judges, Ambassadors and other diplomatic agents, recipients of honours, are all selected always with careful consideration, not seldom with anxious care. Appraisement in money value of curios and objects of art falls under the same head. If we please to take the trouble we may arrange a class in order of any specified description of merit.
I will now suppose this to be done for Civic Worth (a term that I need not now stop to define) and that examples have been recorded of the qualifications of those who stand at any two specified practical lengths of the array. It is convenient to take those at or about its middle and at or about its upper fourth division. Let us call them M and Q. The difference between M and Q we take as the unit of Civic Worth. This difference will be called q (describing briefly the Quartile difference).
All children of 1 of all parental couples to be Wards of Government ; n = say, 10. No. of
children to be provided for 4 per family (Average 4 children to parent, total children 40) i o V population. Expenditure on scale of upper artisan families say 5s. a week.
(p) at 5s. per week £13 a year.
Free from other expense „ 2s. 6d. „ £6. 10s. „ up to .., years.
Looked after without interfering with parental responsibility, unless grave faults of management. i i 11 = 2 £10 a year.
Competitive insurance of male children when adults to partly repay at age or death
r th of expenditure.
Marriages per thousand of population.
4 times as many children, i ~ take or multiply marriages by 0.4. 5s. a week = 5 x 52 = 260 shillings =X13 a year,
to be continued for 15 years, 13 x 15=£195 say £200 total for each child,
in a population of 1000, 20 (say) marriages a year or a yearly capital to be put by of £4000, i.e. £4 per head. Army cost?
This is 4 times too much to be reasonable; make n=20 to halve it,
If 20 more per thousand and 1 in 20 taken, that is (4 children to 1 marriage) 4 per thousand
of population to receive this at 4s. a head = £40 ann. = 40 x 15 = 600 total per 1000. Ignore compound interest, the are far greater than the allowance for it.
£10 annually= ?5 22 shillings = 4s. about weekly.
It is deviation from M measured to units of q that we shall be solely concerned with here.