Law of definite proportions

The Law of Proportion

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The law of proportion

The Law of Proportion.

Associated with the Law of Size is the Law of Proportion.

The term "proportion" means the relation of one thing to another in regard to the magnitude: the fitness of parts to each other. The character reader will as a general rule observe some part of the body out of proportion to other parts of the body, and therefore, to apply this law will require a standard to go by to judge which part is out of proportion. According to " New Physiognomy," by S. R. Wells, artists esteem the correct proportions of the human figure to be as follows: The length of the whole figure, six times the length of the foot; the face from the highest part of the forehead where the hair begins, to the end of the chin, one-tenth the length of the figure, the hand from the wrist to the end of the middle finger the same, the chest a fourth, and from the nipple to the top of the head the same; from the top of the chest to the highest point of the forehead a seventh; the cir­cumference of the wrist just half that of the neck.

If the length of the face from the roots of the hair to the end of the chin be divided into three equal parts, the first division deter­mines the point where the eyebrows meet the second the place of the nostrils.The navel is the central point of the human body, including the limbs, and if a man should he on his back with his arms and legs extended, the periphery of the circle which might be described around him with the navel for its centre. The height from the feet to the top of the head is the same as the distance from the extremity of one hand to the extremity of the other, when the arms are extended.

These proportions will, of course, only be found in the perfect form which we all observe in sculp­ture, and other forms of art, but not in real life, for there is usually a disproportion of some part of the body to that of the other parts. It may be the size of the head, limbs or trunk, which may be out of proportion one to the other, or some part only of the head, limbs, or trunk, but wherever the disproportion is observed, it will be found to reveal something out of the normal, and must be taken into consideration for a correct diagnosis.

Disproportion may be caused by: (1) Accident.   (2) Disease. (3) Malformation.  (4) Special Development. As to (1) Accidents. We frequently find that an injury to one side of the head (or hemisphere of the brain) may or may not affect the character or capacity, because in most cases the undamaged hemisphere of the brain continues to operate as though no injury had been sustained to the other hemisphere. In the case of injury to the face, the form is sometimes altered, and due account must be taken of the deformity. As to (2) Disease, we find cases of hydrocephalis, par­alysis, rheumatism, morbid growths, and other disorders which may easily mislead the student, if not understood. Morbid growths may present themselves in such a manner as to dis­tort the part, and in consequence any diagnosis from the part, without due consideration as to the cause of the distortion, would, as to character, be correspondingly distorted.

Can­cerous growths are perhaps the most general which the student will observe. As to (3) Malformation caused by pre-natal influence, heredity, or some other cause. Cretins and giants are ex­amples of Malformation, and where normal conditions do not apply. As to (4) Special development, we see the gymnast with special developed muscles, and it may be said of such that isolated physical or mental training can and does give excel­lent results, but this one-sided development cannot in the nature of things produce the best results, and in consequence we find a large percentage of failures, a lack of balance, and a lack of self-control in some particular. The precise manner in which the Law of Proportion is applied to the physique, face, and hands will be described in the lessons on those particular subjects.

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