The morbid psychology of criminals.




Nicolson, David, 1844-1932.


Journal : The journal of mental science ; vols. xix-xxi.

London : J. and A. Churchill, 1873-1876.

Description : v. xix: pp. 222-, 398- ; v. xx: pp. 20-, 167-, 527- ; v. xxi: pp. 18-, 225-, [1 l.] pl. ; ill.: 1 photo. ; 25 cm.

Photograph : 10 heliotype portraits on 1 leaf.

Subject : Brain function — Cognitive & developmental disorders.

Notes :




The accompanying pictures in heliotype, taken from original photographs, are sufficiently well-marked to form typical illustrations of the physiognomy in weak-minded criminals :

1. An Irish pig-driver. Crime Rape and Manslaughter, with one previous conviction for theft. Remarkable baboon-like expression a veritable "missing link." Simple mental weakness, with animal propensities.

2. A habitual criminal. Crime wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm : twenty-seven previous convictions, mostly for robbery. Gross, violent and brutish. Hopelessly intractable. Emotional exaltation of mind.

3. Crime Arson: after seven summary convictions for theft and misdemeanour. Cunning, treacherous and violent. Mental exaltation.

4. Crime Larceny : two previous convictions. Fanciful, destructive, and vicious. Ugly, weak countenance : has high notions of his personal attractions; numerous delusive ideas. Delusional exaltation.

5. Crime Rape : nine summary convictions for drunkenness and assault. Low-minded, sullen, obstinate, and determined : prison delusions about food and injustice of sentence ; violent and threatening in manner. Delusional exaltation.

6. One of the " worst of men." Habitual criminal : thief from boyhood. Cunning, quarrelsome, irritating and mischievous, full of cowardly threats. Mental irritability. Emotional exaltation.

7. Respectable, a casual criminal, a post-letter carrier, convicted of breach of trust. Mind a " prey to black despair." Melancholia with home sickness.

8. Crime Burglary, with three previous convictions : most likely the tool of others. A wretched, scrofulous creature; poverty of intellect, and some tendency to irritability and even extravagant fancies. Simple mental weakness.

9. A boy, almost idiotic : convicted of an unnatural offence. Generally well-behaved in prison. Simple mental weakness.

10. Crime Manslaughter : agricultural labourer. Almost a mental " automaton." Lamentably weak, but behaves well usually. Simple mental weakness.







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