introduction to Professor Donders, whose work on Sir Charles Bell's views is quoted in the "Expression of the Emotions," pages 160-62.)
Down, June 3rd [1870?].
I do not know how to thank you enough for the very great trouble which you have taken in writing at such length, and for your kind expressions towards me. I am particularly obliged for the abstract with respect to Sir C. Bell's views (465/2. See "Expression of the Emotions," pages 158 et seq.: Sir Charles Bell's view is that adopted by Darwin--viz. that the contraction of the muscles round the eyes counteracts the gorging of the parts during screaming, etc. The essay of Donders is, no doubt, "On the Action of the Eyelids in Determination of Blood from Expiratory Effort" in Beale's "Archives of Medicine," Volume V., 1870, page 20, which is a translation of the original in Dutch.), as I shall now proceed with some confidence; but I am intensely curious to read your essay in full when translated and published, as I hope, in the "Dublin Journal," as you speak of the weak point in the case--viz., that injuries are not known to follow from the gorging of the eye with blood. I may mention that my son and his friend at a military academy tell me that when they perform certain feats with their heads downwards their faces become purple and veins distended, and that they then feel an uncomfortable sensation in their eyes; but that as it is necessary for them to see, they cannot protect their eyes by closing the eyelids. The companions of one young man, who naturally has very prominent eyes, used to laugh at him when performing such feats, and declare that some day both eyes would start out of his head.
Your essay on the physiological and anatomical relations between the contraction of the orbicular muscles and the secretion of tears is wonderfully clear, and has interested me greatly. I had not thought about irritating substances getting into the nose during vomiting; but my clear impression is that mere retching causes tears. I will, however, try to get this point ascertained. When I reflect that in vomiting (subject to the above doubt), in violent coughing from choking, in yawning, violent laughter, in the violent downward action of the abdominal muscle...and in your very curious case of the spasms (465/3. In some cases a slight touch to the eye causes spasms of the orbicularis muscle, which may continue for so long as an hour, being accompanied by a flow of tears. See "Expression of the Emotions," page 166.)--that in all these cases the orbicular muscles are strongly and unconsciously contracted, and that at the same time tears often certainly flow, I must think that there is a connection of some kind between these phenomena; but you have clearly shown me that the nature of the relation is at present quite obscure.
LETTER 466. TO A.D. BARTLETT. 6, Queen Anne Street, W., December 19th [1870?].
I was with Mr. Wood this morning, and he expressed himself strongly about your and your daughter's kindness in aiding him. He much wants assistance on another point, and if you would aid him, you would greatly oblige me. You know well the appearance of a dog when approaching another dog with hostile intentions, before they come close together. The dog walks very stiffly, with tail rigid and upright, hair on back erected, ears pointed and eyes directed forwards. When the dog attacks the other, down go the ears, and the canines are uncovered. Now, could you anyhow arrange so that one of your dogs could see a strange dog from a little distance, so that Mr. Wood could sketch the former attitude, viz., of the stiff gesture with erected hair and erected ears. (466/1. In Chapter II. of the "Expression of the Emotions" there are sketches of dogs in illustration of the "Principle of Antithesis," drawn by Mr. Riviere and by Mr. A. May (figures 5-8). Mr. T.W. Wood supplied similar drawings of a cat (figures 9, 10), also a sketch of the head of a snarling dog (figure 14).) And then he could afterwards sketch the same dog, when fondled by his master and wagging his tail with drooping ears.