Volltext: Hereditary Genius: An Inquiry Into its Laws and Consequences

I PROPOSE to supplement what I have written about brain 
by two short chapters on muscle. No one doubts that 
muscle is hereditary in horses and dogs, but humankind 
are so blind to facts and so governed by preconceptions, 
that I have heard it frequently asserted that muscle is 
not hereditary in men. Oarsmen and wrestlers have 
maintained that their heroes spring up capriciously, so 
I have thought it advisable to make inquiries into the 
matter. The results • I have obtained will beat down 
another place of refuge for those who insist that each 
man is an independent creation, and not a mere function, 
physically, morally, and intellectually, of ancestral quali¬ 
ties and external influences. 
In respect to Oarsmen, let me assure the reader that 
they are no insignificant fraction of the community,—no 
mere waifs and strays from those who follow more civilized 
pursuits. A perfect passion for rowing pervades large 
classes. At Newcastle, when a great race takes place, all 
business is at a standstill, factories are closed, shops are 
shut, and offices deserted. The number of men who fall 
within the attraction of the career is very great ; and there 
can be no doubt that a large proportion of those among 
them who are qualified to succeed brilliantly, obey the 
attraction and pursue it. 
For the information in this and the following chapters, 
I am entirely indebted to the kind inquiries made for me


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