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The reader will perceive that I have endeavoured to confine myself to a resume of the more prominent incipient symptoms of the various forms of cerebral and mental disorder. I could not enter more minutely into an investigation of these subjects without trenching upon materiel which will constitute the bases of two succeeding works: viz., one on Organic Affections of the Brain, and the second on Disorders of the Intelligence, Cerebro-Psychical in their nature.
In justice to the reader as well as to myself, I make this explanation, as an apology for the somewhat cursory manner in which I have been obliged to treat the more practical portions of my subject. I refer particularly to those sections of the treatise that relate to the medical treatment of incipient paralysis, apoplexy, softening, as well as other forms of organic cerebral disease and functional mental disorder.
It was impossible for me, without greatly enlarging this already too bulky volume, to enter, except in general terms, upon the consideration of the subject of therapeutics. If I had attempted to do otherwise, it would have been necessary for me to have excluded from the work much salient, illustrative, and relevant matter having a direct bearing upon the class of morbid phenomena under analytical investigation.
I am bound to confess that I fully and sensitively appreciate the many shortcomings and defects to be found in the following pages. It is not my duty, however, to point them out to the reader. His critical eye will no doubt soon detect all sins of omission and commission, and will, considering the vast extent of ground over which I have had to travel, make every allowance for them.
I sincerely trust that I shall not be exposing myself to the imputation of egotism, if I were to repeat what Goldsmith said in his preface to the "Vicar of Wakefield," —" There are an hundred faults in this thing, and an hundred things might be said to prove them beauties. But it is needless. A book may be amusing with numerous errors, or it may be dull without a single absurdity."
23, Cavendish Squabe, London, April, I860.
TABLE OF CONTENTS.
Ignorance of the nature of insanity—Poetical description of insanity by a lunatic—
The autobiography of the insane interesting and instructive—Indivisibility of mind
ANOMALOUS AND MASKED AFFECTIONS OF THE MIND.
Neglect of habits of self-inspection—Innato wickedness of the human heart—