Bloomsbury Cultural History - Fowler's phrenological head
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Collection: Wellcome Collection

Subjects

Place:

England

Content Type:

Museum Object

Fowler's phrenological head

This is an image from BCH_images_wellcome_L0057592

Lorenzo Niles Fowler’s detailed system of phrenology is shown on this phrenological head. Phrenologists believed that the shape and size of various areas of the brain (and therefore the overlying skull) determined personality. For instance, the area under the right eye relates to language and verbal memory; the desire for foods and liquids was thought to be located in front of the right ear.Fowler’s system, based on his thirty years of research throughout the world, was just one of many. He was an American phrenologist who led a revival in phrenology after its decline in the 1850s. In 1860, Fowler emigrated with his family to the United Kingdom and set upon an ambitious lecture tour. In 1887, Fowler set up the British Phrenological Society, which finally disbanded in 1967.

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