Cranial deformation / elongated skulls


Atlantis, the Antediluvian World, by Ignatius Donnelly, [1882], at sacred-texts.com


p. 268

CHAPTER IX.

ARTIFICIAL DEFORMATION OF THE SKULL.

AN examination of the American monuments shows (see figure on page 269) that the people represented were in the habit of flattening the skull by artificial means. The Greek and Roman writers had mentioned this practice, but it was long totally forgotten by the civilized world, until it was discovered, as an unheard-of wonder, to be the usage among the Carib Islanders, and several Indian tribes in North America. It was afterward found that the ancient Peruvians and Mexicans practised this art: several flattened Peruvian skulls are depicted in Morton’s “Crania Americana.” It is still in use among the Flat-head Indians of the north-western part of the United States.

In 1849 a remarkable memoir appeared from the pen of M. Rathke, showing that similar skulls had been found near Kertsch, in the Crimea, and calling attention to the book of Hippocrates, “De Aeris, Aquis et Locu,” lib. iv., and a passage of Strabo, which speaks of the practice among the Scythians. In 1854 Dr. Fitzinger published a learned memoir on the skulls of the Avars, a branch of the Uralian race of Turks. He shows that the practice of flattening the head had existed from an early date throughout the East, and described an ancient skull, greatly distorted by artificial means, which had lately been found in Lower Austria. Skulls similarly flattened have been found in Switzerland and Savoy. The Huns under Attila had the same practice of flattening the heads. Professor Anders Retzius proved (see “Smithsonian Report,” 1859) that the custom still exists in the south of France, and in parts of Turkey.

p. 269

[paragraph continues]“Not long since a French physician surprised the world by the fact that nurses in Normandy were still giving the children’s heads a sugar-loaf shape by bandages and a tight cap,

 


STUCCO BAS-RELIEF IN THE PALACE OF PALENQUE.

 

while in Brittany they preferred to press it round. No doubt they are doing so to this day.” (Tylor’s “Anthropology,” p. 241.)

Professor Wilson remarks:

 

“Trifling as it may appear, it is not without interest to have the fact brought under our notice, by the disclosures of ancient

p. 270

barrows and cysts, that the same practice of nursing the child and carrying it about, bound to a flat cradle-board, prevailed in Britain and the north of Europe long before the first notices of written history reveal the presence of man beyond the Baltic or the English Channel, and that in all probability the same custom prevailed continuously from the shores of the German Ocean to Behring’s Strait.” (“Smithsonian Report,” 1862, p. 286.)

Dr. L. A. Gosse testifies to the prevalence of the same custom among the Caledonians and Scandinavians in the earliest times; and Dr. Thurman has treated of the same peculiarity among the Anglo-Saxons. Crania Britannica,” chap. iv., p. 38.)

ANCIENT SWISS SKULL.
ANCIENT SWISS SKULL.

Here, then, is an extraordinary and unnatural practice which has existed from the highest antiquity, over vast regions of country, on both sides of the Atlantic, and which is perpetuated unto this day in races as widely separated as the Turks, the French, and the Flat-head Indians. Is it possible to explain this except by supposing that it originated from some common centre?

The annexed out represents an ancient Swiss skull, from a cemetery near Lausanne, from a drawing of Frederick Troyon. Compare this with the illustration given on page 271, which represents a Peruvian flat-head, copied from Morton’s “Ethnography and Archæology of the American Aborigines,” 1846. This skull is shockingly distorted. The dotted lines indicate the course of the bandages by which the skull was deformed.

p. 271

 


PERUVIAN SKULL.


CHINOOK (FLAT-HEAD), AFTER CATLIN.

 

The following heads are from Del Rio’s “Account of Palenque,” copied into Nott and Gliddon’s “Types of Mankind,” p. 440. They show that the receding forehead was a natural characteristic of the ancient people of Central America. The same form of head has been found even in fossil skulls. We may therefore conclude that the skull-flattening, which we find to have been practised in both the Old and New Worlds, was

p. 272

an attempt of other races to imitate the form of skull of a people whose likenesses are found on the monuments of Egypt and of America. It has been shown that this peculiar form of the head was present even in the fœtus of the Peruvian mummies.

Hippocrates tells us that the practice among the Scythians was for the purpose of giving a certain aristocratic distinction.

 


HEADS FROM PALENQUE.

 

Amedée Thierry, in his “History of Attila,” says the Huns used it for the same reason; and the same purpose influences the Indians of Oregon.

Dr. Lund, a Swedish naturalist, found in the bone caves of Minas-Geraes, Brazil, ancient human bones associated with the remains of extinct quadrupeds. “These skulls,” says Lund, “show not only the peculiarity of the American race but in an excessive degree, even to the entire disappearance of the forehead.” Sir Robert Schomburgh found on some of the affluents of the Orinoco a tribe known as Frog Indians, whose heads were flattened by Nature, as shown in newly-born children.

p. 273

In the accompanying plate we show the difference in the conformation of the forehead 

OUTLINES OF SKULLS OF DIFFERENT RACES.
OUTLINES OF SKULLS OF DIFFERENT RACES.

in various races. The upper dotted line, A, represents the shape of the European forehead; the next line, B, that of the Australian; the next, C, that of the Mound Builder of the United States; the next, D, that of the Guanche of the Canary Islands; and the next, E, that of a skull from the Inca cemetery of Peru. We have but to compare these lines with the skulls of the Egyptians, Kurds, and the heroic type of heads in the statues of the gods of Greece, to see that there was formerly an ancient race marked by a receding forehead; and that the practice of flattening the skull was probably an attempt to approximate the shape of the head to this standard of an early civilized and dominant people.

Not only do we find the same receding forehead in the skulls of the ancient races of Europe and America, and the same attempt to imitate this natural and peculiar conformation by artificial flattening of the head, but it has been found (see Henry Gillman’s “Ancient Man in Michigan,” “Smithsonian Report,” 1875, p. 242) that the Mound Builders and Peruvians of America, and the Neolithic people of France and the Canary Islands, had alike an extraordinary custom of boring a circular bole in the top of the skulls of their dead, so that the soul might readily pass in and out. More than this, it has been found that in all these ancient populations the skeletons exhibit a remarkable degree of platicnemism, or flattening of the tibiæ or leg bones. (lbid., 1873, p.367.) In this respect the Mound Builders of Michigan were identical with the man of Cro Magnon and the ancient inhabitants of Wales.

p. 274

The annexed ancient Egyptian heads, copied from the monuments, indicate either that the people of the Nile deformed their heads by pressure upon the front of the skull, or that

 


EGYPTIAN HEADS.

 

there was some race characteristic which gave this appearance to their heads. These heads are all the heads of priests, and therefore represented the aristocratic class.

The first illustration below is taken from a stucco relief

CENTRAL AMERICAN HEAD.
CENTRAL AMERICAN HEAD.

EGYPTIAN HEAD.
EGYPTIAN HEAD.

found in a temple at Palenque, Central America. The second is from an Egyptian monument of the time of Rameses IV.

The outline drawing on the following page shows the form of the skull

p. 275

of the royal Inca line: the receding forehead here seems to be natural, and not the result of artificial compression.

Both illustrations at the bottom of the preceding page show the same receding form of the forehead, due to either artificial deformation of the skull or 

PERUVIAN INCA SKULL, FROM THE ANCIENT CEMETARY OF PAHACAMAC.
PERUVIAN INCA SKULL, FROM THE ANCIENT CEMETARY OF PAHACAMAC.

to a common race characteristic.

We must add the fact that the extraordinary practice of deforming the skull was found all over Europe and America to the catalogue of other proofs that the people of both continents were originally united in blood and race. With the couvade, the practice of circumcision, unity of religious beliefs and customs, folk-lore, and alphabetical signs, language and flood legends, we array together a mass of unanswerable proofs of prehistoric identity of race.


Next: Chapter I: Traditions of Atlantis.

The Mayan Ballplayer with elongated head

Falsely identified as an ancient astronaut in a spacesuite, if one see the codex one can see its a ballplayer in his costume.

What is however more than interesting is his elongated head like the Paracas skulls, what is debated if this was a head binding practice.

 

Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:WLA_lacma_Ballplayer_Figure_Guatemala,_Peten_region_500-850_A.D._002.jpg#/media/File:WLA_lacma_Ballplayer_Figure_Guatemala,_Peten_region_500-850_A.D..jpg

Description
English: M2007 187 2 Ballplayer Figure Guatemala, Peten region 500-850 A.D.
Date
Source http://www.lacma.org/image-library
Author LACMA

Eric John Dingwall. Artificial Cranial Deformation A contribution to the study of ethnic mutilations(1931)

http://www.ancient-wisdom.com/cranialdeformation.htm

Eric John Dingwall

Artificial Cranial Deformation. A contribution to the study of ethnic mutilations

 

Title

  • Artificial cranial deformation : a contribution to the study of ethnic mutilations /​ by Eric John Dingwall.

Author

  • Dingwall, Eric J. (Eric John)

Published

  • London : J. Bale, Sons &​ Danielsson, 1931.

Physical Description

  • xvi, 313 p. : ill., maps ; 26 cm.

Subjects

Notes

  • “Present work was formerly submitted and approved as a thesis for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the University of London, but since that time … has undergone much extension and revision.”–Pref.
  • Includes bibliographic footnotes and index.

Language

  • English

 

(1931)

 

 

Modern book:


 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artificial_cranial_deformation

 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Proto Nazca deformed skull, c 200-100 BC.

Landesmuseum Württemberg deformed skull, early 6th century Allemannic culture.

Painting by Paul Kane, showing a Chinookan child in the process of having its head flattened, and an adult after the process.

Artificial cranial deformation or modification, head flattening, or head binding is a form of body alteration in which the skull of a human being is deformed intentionally. It is done by distorting the normal growth of a child’s skull by applying force. Flat shapes, elongated ones (produced by binding between two pieces of wood), rounded ones (binding in cloth), and conical ones are among those chosen. Typically, it is carried out on an infant, as the skull is most pliable at this time. In a typical case, headbinding begins approximately a month after birth and continues for about six months.

Contents

History

Elongated skull of a young woman, probably an Alan.

Intentional cranial deformation predates written history; it was practised commonly in a number of cultures that are widely separated geographically and chronologically, and still occurs today in a few places, including Vanuatu.

The earliest suggested examples were once thought to include the Proto-Neolithic Homo sapiens component (ninth millennium BC) from Shanidar Cave in Iraq,[1][2][3] and also among Neolithic peoples in Southwest Asia.[1][4]

The earliest written record of cranial deformation—by Hippocrates, of the Macrocephali or Long-heads, who were named for their practice of cranial modification—dates to 400 BC.[5]

Paracas skulls

In the Old World, Huns also are known to have practised similar cranial deformation.[6] as were the people known as the Alans.[7] In Late Antiquity (AD 300-600), the East Germanic tribes who were ruled by the Huns, the Gepids, Ostrogoths, Heruli, Rugii, and Burgundians adopted this custom.[citation needed] In western Germanic tribes, artificial skull deformations rarely have been found.[8]

The practice of cranial deformation was brought to Bactria and Sogdiana by the tribes who created the Kushan Empire. Men with such skulls are depicted in various surviving sculptures and friezes of that time, such as the Kushan prince of Khalchayan.[9]

In the Americas, the Maya,[10][11][12] Inca, and certain tribes of North American natives performed the custom. In North America the practice was known, especially among the Chinookan tribes of the Northwest and the Choctaw of the Southeast. The Native American group known as the Flathead Indians, in fact, did not practise head flattening, but were named as such in contrast to other Salishan people who used skull modification to make the head appear rounder.[citation needed] Other tribes, including both Southeastern tribes like the Choctaw[13][14] and Northwestern tribes like the Chehalis and Nooksack Indians, practiced head flattening by strapping the infant’s head to a cradleboard.[citation needed]

The practice of cranial deformation was also practiced by the Lucayan people of the Bahamas,[15] and it was also known among the Aboriginal Australians.[citation needed]

Friedrich Ratzel reported in 1896 that deformation of the skull, both by flattening it behind and elongating it toward the vertex, was found in isolated instances in Tahiti, Samoa, Hawaii, and the Paumotu group, and that it occurred most frequently on Mallicollo in the New Hebrides (today Malakula, Vanuatu), where the skull was squeezed extraordinarily flat.[16]

Deliberate deformity of the skull, “Toulouse deformity”, band visible in photograph is used to induce shape change.

In the region of Toulouse (France), these cranial deformations persisted sporadically up until the early twentieth century;[17][18] however, rather than being intentionally produced as with some earlier European cultures, Toulousian Deformation seemed to have been the unwanted result of an ancient medical practice among the French peasantry known as bandeau, in which a baby’s head was tightly wrapped and padded in order to protect it from impact and accident shortly after birth; in fact, many of the early modern observers of the deformation were recorded as pitying these peasant children, whom they believed to have been lowered in intelligence due to the persistence of old European customs.[19] The custom of binding babies’ heads in Europe in the twentieth century, though dying out at the time, was predominant in France, and also found in pockets in western Russia, the Caucasus, and in Scandinavia.[19]:46 The reasons for the shaping of the head varied over time and for different reasons, from aesthetic to pseudoscientific ideas about the brain’s ability to hold certain types of thought depending on its shape.[19]:51

Methods and types

Methods used by the Mayan people to shape a child’s head

Deformation usually begins just after birth for the next couple of years until the desired shape has been reached or the child rejects the apparatus.[19][page needed][20][21]

There is no broadly established classification system of cranial deformations, and many scientists have developed their own classification systems without agreeing on a single system for all forms observed.[22] An example of an individual system is that of E.V. Zhirov, who described three main types of artificial cranial deformation—round, fronto-occipital, and sagittal—for occurrences in Europe and Asia, in the 1940s.[23]:82

Motivations and theories

One modern theory is cranial deformation was likely performed to signify group affiliation,[22][24][25] or to demonstrate social status. Such motivations may have played a key role in Maya society,[24] aimed at creating a skull shape that is aesthetically more pleasing or associated with desirable attributes. For example, in the Nahai-speaking area of Tomman Island and the south south-western Malakulan (Australasia), a person with an elongated head is thought to be more intelligent, of higher status, and closer to the world of the spirits.[26]

Dr. Leopold Müller: Lithography of a fetus, in the intrauterine position, with the typical Huanca skull shape (Lamina VI a.) in the Spanish version of the ‘Peruvian Antiquities’ (1851) which was found in a mummy of a pregnant woman.[27]

Historically, there have been a number of various theories regarding the motivations for these practices.

It has also been considered possible that the practice of cranial deformation originates from an attempt to emulate those groups of the population in which elongated head shape was a natural condition. For example, Rivero and Tschudi describe a mummy containing a foetus with an elongated skull, describing it thus:

…the same formation [i.e. absence of the signs of artificial pressure] of the head presents itself in children yet unborn; and of this truth we have had convincing proof in the sight of a foetus, enclosed in the womb of a mummy of a pregnant woman, which we found in a cave of Huichay, two leagues from Tarma, and which is, at this moment, in our collection. Professor D’Outrepont, of great Celebrity in the department of obstetrics, has assured us that the foetus is one of seven months’ age. It belongs, according to a very clearly defined formation of the cranium, to the tribe of the Huancas. We present the reader with a drawing of this conclusive and interesting proof in opposition to the advocates of mechanical action as the sole and exclusive cause of the phrenological form of the Peruvian race.[28]

Lithographs of skulls by J. Basire

P.F. Bellamy makes a similar observation about the two elongated skulls of infants, which were discovered and brought to England by a “Captain Blankley” and handed over to the Museum of the Devon and Cornwall Natural History Society in 1838. According to Bellamy, these skulls belonged to two infants, female and male, “one of which was not more than a few months old, and the other could not be much more than one year.”[29] He writes,

It will be manifest from the general contour of these skulls that they are allied to those in the Museum of the College of Surgeons in London, denominated Titicacans. Those adult skulls are very generally considered to be distorted by the effects of pressure; but in opposition to this opinion Dr. Graves has stated, that “a careful examination of them has convinced him that their peculiar shape cannot be owing to artificial pressure;” and to corroborate this view, we may remark that the peculiarities are as great in the child as in the adult, and indeed more in the younger than in the elder of the two specimens now produced: and the position is considerably strengthened by the great relative length of the large bones of the cranium; by the direction of the plane of the occipital bone, which is not forced upwards, but occupies a place in the under part of the skull; by the further absence of marks of pressure, there being no elevation of the vertex nor projection of either side; and by the fact of there being no instrument nor mechanical contrivance suited to produce such an alteration of form (as these skulls present) found in connexion with them…[30]

Health effects