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Correlations between cranial capacity and cranial length breadth and height as studied in the St. Lawrence Island Eskimo crania United States National Museum. Craniometric Studies No

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CORRELATIONS BETWEEN CRANIAL CAPACITY
AND CRANIAL LENGTH, BREADTH, AND HEIGHT,
AS STUDIED I N THE ST. LAWRENCE ISLAND
ESKIMO CRANIA, UNITED STATES NATIONAL
MUSEUM
CRANIOMETRIC STUDIES, No. 10
I n the ninth Craniometric Study, crania from the Greenland area were chosen as representing the eastern groups of
Eskimos. In this paper the crania from St. Lawrence Island
w7ill be studied as representative of the western Eskimo
groups. It was decided to utilize the same numbers of
crania, namely, thirty-four male (nos. 279453 to 242793) and
thirty-four female (nos. 279403 to 242773).
St. Lawreiice Island, it may be noted, is off the west coast
of Alaska, just south of the Bering Strait.
THE CRANIAL CAPACITY
I n this Eskimo group the writer met with the highest cranial capacity in his experience, namely, 1810 cc., which was
registered by cranium no. 279492. This is an outstanding
figure even f o r a race where one normally expects a relatively high cranial capacity. The average capacity for the
males of this group was 1489 cc., which was, however, lower
than that found in the Greenland Eskimo male crania (1560
cc.) and the Eskimo male crania of the Royal College of
Surgeons Museum (1546 cc.). The minimum for the male
crania of this group was 1300 cc.--certainly, a vast reduction
from the maximum.
The maximum f o r the female crania, viz., 1490 cc., was
below that for the Greenland Eskimo females, but decidedly
above that f o r the female Eskimos of the Canadian Arctic
Expedition (1), while the average capacity of 1341 cc. exactly
followed suit. It is interesting, however, to note that the average cranial capacities of the St. Lawrence Island Eskimos,
269
270
JOHN CAMERON
both male and female, were decidedly higher than those for
the American white and the American negro, as estimated by
Wingate Todd(6). These comparisons are shown in table 1.
TABLE 1
The average cranial capacities of t h e St. Lawrence Island Eskimos, both male and
female, are higher than those for the Hamann Museum crania,
both white and negro
St. Lawrence Island Eskimos (U. S. N. Museum).
Hamann Museum whites.. .....................
Hamann Museum negroes ......................
Males
Females
1489 P C .
1391 cc.
1350 cc.
1341 ec.
1231 ee.
1220 ce.
HrdliEka's module(4) for the male crania of this Eskimo
group, viz., 1542, was well above the average capacity, while
in the case of the female crania it was decidedly higher-1477
compared with 1341.
With such a vast range of variation of the cranial capacity
in the males, it was to be expected that the standard deviation would be unusually high in these crania. This proved to
be so, for it reached the high figure of 114, which was much
above the corresponding amounts for the Greenland Eskimos
(Craniometric Study, no. 9 ) and the Eskimo crania of the
Canadian Arctic Expedition (1).
The female crania exhibited the converse condition. The
range of variation of the cranial capacity was in them much
less, and therefore their standard deviation yielded the comparatively low figure of 71.37, which was lower than the
corresponding figures for the Greenland female Eskimos and
the female Eskimos of the Canadian Arctic Expedition.
One should certainly expect to find in a homogeneous race
like the Eskimo a lowering of the standard deviation of the
various cranial measurements. This impression is confirmed
by a comparison with the Hamann Museum crania, where
Wingate Todd found very high standard deviations(6). This
collection, as he points out, is admittedly very heterogeneous
in character, representing, as it does, racial admixture from
all the countries of Europe.
The coefficients of variability, as usual, followed these results consistently, as table 2 shows. F o r instance, the coeffi-
271
CRANIOMETEIC STUDIES
cient of variability for the St. Lawrence Island Eskimo males
was relatively high, viz., 7.65, and for the females definitely
lower, namely, ,5.32.
TABLE 2
T h e standard deviation and coefficient of variability of cranial capacity are low
in a homogeneous race like the Eskimo and comparatively high in the Hamann
Museum white crania, thus suggesting racial admixture in the latter
*
Males
Females
S.D.
C. of P.
71.37
91.30
85.35
126.32
5.32
6.77
6.88
10.25
St. Lawrence Island Eskimo (U. S. N.
Museum) ..........................
Greenland Eskimo (U. S. N. Museum). . .
Canadian Arctic Expedition Eskimo.. . . .
Hamann Museum white crania ... . .... .
114.00
87.65
61.78
117.58
7.65
5.61
4.48
8.45
THE CRANIAL LENGTH
The range of variation of the cranial length was very extensive in the males-from a maximum of 200 mm. to a minimum
of 177 mm. I n the female crania it varied from 184 mm. to
173 mm. The average cranial length was 187.5 mm. in the
males, and for the females, 178.5 mm. In a dolichocephalic
race like the Eskimo one would of course expect high maxima
for the cranial lengths, the highest figure f o r these St. Lawrence Island males being, however, not so high as in the case
of the Greenland Eskimo males. The high average length
for these Eskimo crania is rendered more vivid by contrast
with the low averages for the Hamann Museum white crania
-181.4 mm. for the males and 173.7 mm. for the female
crania (6).
Though the Eskimo is generally regarded as dolichocepha h , it is interesting to note that, if one makes a survey of
the various Eskimo groups, it will be observed that the cephalic length tends to diminish in a westerly direction. Moreover, it will be further noted that the cephalic index likewise
varies with his geographical situation (table 3). HrdliFka
has already directed attention to this fact in the Catalogue of
the United States National Museum(3), where he states, “The
cranial breadth, and with it the cranial (or cephalic) index,
272
J O H N CAMERON
decreases gradually from the west to the east. There. is no
sudden change at any geographical point. ” For instance,
the cephalic index f o r the Greenland Eskimo male is given in
the Catalogue as 71.5 and for the Central Eskimos, 73.8, while
by the time we have reached as far west as the St. Lawrence
Island group, we find that it has increased to 76.9; that is to
say, there is a tendency to approximate to the brachycephaly
of the Mongolian skull.
TABLE 3
In the various Eskimo groups the average cranial length tends t o diminish, and
the cephalic index t o increase, f r o m east to west
Xdeo
Females
L
-
Craninl length
C e p h n l x
mm.
Greenland Eskimo. ........... 190.5
Central Eskimo. ............. 189
St. Lawrence Island Eskimo. .. 187.5
Asiatic Eskimo.. ............. 186.2
braninl Zength’OephaZic inde:
mm.
71.5
73.8
76.9
79.1
180.5
181.5
178.5
71.9
75.4
77.4
.....
....
The standard deviation of the cranial length in the
St. Lawrence Island Eskimos was higher in the males than in
the females, which was just the reverse of the condition
found in the Greenland Eskimos and in the Eskimos of the
Canadian Arctic Expedition. The respective figures for the
two sexes were 5.30 and 3.30, and the corresponding coefficients of variation were 2.82 and 1.84. These are much lower
than the standard deviations of cranial length in the American white, which were estimated by Wingate Todd(6) to be
8.19 for the male and 8.55 f o r the female crania.
TABLE 4
T h e standard deviation and eoelpicient of v a r k b i l i t y of the cranial length ape low
in a homogeneous rare like the Eskimo, and comparatively high in the Hamann
Museum white crania, thus suggesting racial admixture in t h e latter
,Wales
St. Lawrence Island Eskimos (U. S. N.
Museum) ............................
Greenland Eskimos (U. S. N. Museum). ..
Canadian Arctic Expedition Eskimos. .....
Hamann Museum whites.. ................
5.30
4.50
3.66
8.19
Females
2.82
2.36
1.96
4.51
h. D .
*C.ofd.
3.30
4.53
4.75
8.55
1.84
3.50
2.67
4.92
273
CRANIOMETRIC STUDIES
T H E CRANIAL BREADTH
The range of variation of the cranial breadth in these Rt.
Lawrence Island Eskimos was from 149 mm. to 131 mm. in the
males and from 140 mm. t o 128 mm. in the females. The
average breadth exhibited a decided increase when compared
with that of the Greenland Eskimo, the respective figures for
the males being 139 mm. and 136 111111. The averages for the
females were even more distinctive, namely, 135 mm. and
129.5 mm. The corresponding measurements for the Eskimos
of the Canadian Arctic Expedition were 132.5 mm. in the case
of the male crania and 129 mm. for the female crania. It is
thus clear that the most westerly situated Eskimos, both male
and female, tend to exhibit a greater cranial width than those
situated in a more easterly direction. Hrdlicka (3) has already
directed attention to this fact. We are thus provided with
suggestive evidence regarding the point where the Eskimo
branched off from his brachycephalic Mongolian ancestor,
and then became more and more dolichocephalic, the farther
eastward he migrated. This, however, introduces a very farreaching problem which would require a separate paper for
its full discussion and elucidation.
TABLE 5
The average breadth of the Eskimo skull tends to increase as one proceeds in a
westerly direction through the various geographic groups
Yules
7nm.
Greenland Eskimo (U. S. N. Museum).. ...........
Alaska Eskimo (U.8. N. Museum) ................
St. Lawrence Island Eskimo (U. S. N. Museum). ...
Asiatic Eskimo (U. S. N. Museum) ...............
136
139
139
146.7
Females
mm.
129.5
136
135
...
The standard deviation of breadth was higher in the
St. Lawrence Island males than in the females, the respective
figures being 3.52 and 2.73. The corresponding coefficients
of variability, which were 2.53 and 2.002, followed these results consistently. It is thus of interest to note that the
standard deviation and coefficient of variability were higher
in the males than in the females in both the Greenland and
the St. Lawrence Island Eskimos. It is likewise of interest
274
JOHN CAMEROX
t o observe that the standard deviations and coefficients of
variability in the Eskimo groups are definitely lower than in
the American white, both male and female(6).
TABLE 6
The stqndard deviation and coejlcient o f variability of the cranial breadth are
low in a homogeneous race like the Eskimo, and comparatively high in the
Eamann Museum white crania, thus suggesting racial admixture in the tatter
Hazes
Females
5 - T - % 3 -8 . D.
St. Lawrence Island Eskimos (U. S. N.
Museum) ............................
3.52
Greenland Eskimos (U. S. N. Museum). .. 4.40
Central Eskimos (U. S. N. Museum). . . . . . 1.73
Hamann Museum white crania . . . . . . . . . . . 5.67
2.53
3.23
1.23
3.93
2.73
4.27
2.57
5.35
C . o f V.
2.002
3.30
1.86
3.84
THE CRANL4L HEIGHT
The range of variation of the cranial height in these St.
Lawrence Island Eskimos was from 143 mm. to 131 mm. in
the males and from 139 'mm. to 124 mm. in the females. The
average height in the males displayed a definite decrease when
contrasted with the males of the Greenland area, the measurements being 136.5 mm. and 139.5 mm., respectively. The averages for the females were in both instances exactly the same,
namely, 131.5 mm. On investigating this matter further in
all the available Eskimo groups, it was noted that the reduction in cranial height was most marked in the males and
practically negligible in the females. There thus appeared to
be a sexual factor a t work here. These geographic and sexual
differences with reference to the reduction in the height of
the Eskimo skull have been previously observed by
HrdliEka (3).
TABLE 7
A reduction in the average basion-bregnte height of the Eskimo skull, as one
proceeds from east to wcst, is well marked in the males. I t does not e d t in
8.
the ease of the females. A t the figures in this table are taken from the
National Museum Catalogue
u.
Greenland Eskimos (U. S. N. Museum). ..........
Central Eskimos (U. S. N. Museum). . . . . . . . . . . .
Alaska Eskimos (U. S . N. Museum). ............
St. Lawrence Island Eskimos (T.S. N. Yuseurn) .
Asiatic Eskimos (U. S . N. Museum).. ...........
.
Males
mm.
Females
139.5
139.7
137.6
137
133.6
131
136.9
131.9
132
mm.
...
CRANIOMETRIC STUDIES
275
The standard deviation of the cranial height of the St.
Lawrence Island Eskimos was higher in the females than in
the males, the figures being 3.58 and 3.23. This result was
thus the converse of that found in the Greenland Eskimos.
The coefficients of variability followed these figures consistently. It may be mentioned that the cranial height was the
only one of the three measurements studied in this paper in
which the American white exhibited a standard deviation
practically the same as that of the Eskimo.
Now that all three cranial dimensions have been studied, it
is essential to note at this point that there is evidently an
alteration in all three (with the exception of the cranial
height in the females) as one proceeds in a westerly direction
through the various Eskimo groups. Moreover, these alterations attain their maxima in those tribes (Greenland Eskimos)
that are farthest removed geographically from the ancestral
type.
THE CORRELATIONS
The high correlations that were obtained between capacity
and length, breadth, and height in the St. Lawrence Island
crania served to emphasize still further the homogeneous
character of the Eskimo race. The correlation between capacity and length proved to be +0.70 for the males and
0.56 for the females. This result thus supported the assertion made by the writer in a previous paper(2) that the
correlation in the Eskimo between capacity and cranial
length is “rather higher in the males than in the females.”
Out of six Eskimo groups studied so f a r by the writer, this
correlation was decidedly higher in the males than in the
females in foixr of these. In the Alaska Eskimo and the
Greenland Eskimo, however, the correlations were nearly
the same in both sexes, with a slight advantage in favor of
the females. These results are tabulated below. Wingate
Todd (6) investigated these correlations in the American
white, and found them higher iii the males than in the females (table 9).
+
276
J O H N CAMERON
TABLE
8
1'
I
1
CANADIAN ARCTIC I
~
~
EXPEOITION
A ~ * s K A ESKIMO E
MUSEliN ESKIMO
ESKIMO
CENTRAL
~
& GREENLAND
?
~
ESKINO
ESKIMO
ST.
~ LAWRENCE
~
~
ISLAND ESKIMO
,
This favorable correlation between capacity and cranial
length in the Eskimo likewise affords support to Miss Lee's
suggestion that it may be a distinctive feature of the dolichocephalic type of skull(5). The Eskimo is the only dolichocephalic race in which the writer has had the opportunity of
proving the validity of this statement, so that at present he
has no means of proving that it applies to all dolichocephalic
races.
These correlations for a homogeneous race like the Eskimo
are much more favorable than the corresponding correlations
for the American white, as ascertained by Wingate Todd.
These are shown in table 9.
TABLE 9
The correlations between cranial capacity and cranial length are high in a homogeneous racs like the Eskimo and comparatively low in the Hamann Museum
white crania, both 'male and female, thus suggesting racial admixture in the
latter
1
1
I
I
CANADIAN ARCTIC ROYAL COLLEGE
OFSU&GEONS
EXPEDITION
ESKIMO
MUSEUM ESKIMO
Males,
Females,
I:;:
+ 0.72
+ 0.52
CENTRA=
ESKIMO
1
GREEN~IRD
ESKIMO
1
1+ 1+ 1
+ 0.83
0.65
I
I
+ 0.51
0.62
1 tzzE!
ST,~ A ~ R E R O E HAMARR
ISLANDESKIMO ,
I
+ 0.70
+ 0.56
1 ++
I
0.45
0.37
The correlation between capacity and cranial breadth likewise proved to be highly favorable in these St. Lawrence
0.83 for the males
Island Eskimo crania, the fignres being
and
0.67 f o r the females. The results of the present investigation show that this eorrelat,ion is somewhat variable in
character in the various Eskimo groups, though an inspection
+
+
~
277
CRANIOMETRIC STUDIES
of table 10 shows that it is more favorable in the females than
in the males in all of these groups, except one. This sexual
factor was found at work in the case of the American white
where Wingate Todd( 6 ) obtained a superiority of correlation
in the females, as compared with the males (table 10). It may
be noted in the same table that the Eskimo correlations are
much higher than those found in the American white.
TABLE 10
T h e correlutwn between capacity and craninl breadth tends t o be higher in t h e
f c m d e s than in the males. Note t h e superiority of correlation in the Esl-imo
as compared wzth t h e H a m a n n Museum while crania
ALASKA ESKIMO
Males,
Females,
+ 0.65
+ 0.73
ROYAL COLLEGE
O F SURGEONS
M U S E U M ESKIMO
G RE E N L A XD
ESKIMO
ST. LA WR EN C E
I S L A N D ES KI M O
+ 0.55
+ 0.75
+ 0.32
+ 0.60
+ 0.83
f 0.67
HAUNN
MUSEUX
WHITE
+ 0.46
+ 0.56
The correlation between capacity and height likewise
proved to be favorable in these St. Lawrence Island Eskimo
crania, though to a much less extent than in the two previous
correlations. The figures were
0.49 for the males and
+0.32 for the females. The males thus provided the more
favorable correlation. I n the other four Eskimo groups previously investigated by the writer(2) it was ascertained that
the correlation between cranial capacity and cranial height
exhibited greater variation than in the cases of capacitylength and capacity-breadth, but was in all, with the exception of one group, more favorable in the females than in the
males. The results of the present investigation provide further evidence of the fact that this correlation is variable in
character.
It is of interest to record that this correlation was the
only one of the three in which the American white, both male
and female, exhibited more favorable results than the St.
Lawrence Island Eskimo, as table 11 shows.
+
278
J O H N CAMERON
TABLE 11
The correlation between cranial capacity and cranial height is more favorable in
the American white than in the St. Lawrence Island Eskimo,
both male and female
American white (Hamann Museum). . . . . . . . . . . .
St. Lawrence Island Eskimo (U. S. N. Museum).
Males
+ 0.59
+ 0.49
Females
+ 0.60
+ 0.32
CONCLUSIONS
1. The standard deviations and coefficients of variability
of the cranial capacity, the cranial length, and the cranial
breadth are low in a homogeneous race like the Eskimo and
comparatively high in the Mamann Museum whites, thus suggesting racial admixture in the latter. The standard deviation and coefficient of variability of the cranial height practically corresponded in the two races.
2. As HrdliFka has previously pointed out, the three cranial
dimensions (with the exception of the cranial height in the
females) exhibit definite changes as one proceeds from east
to west through the various geographic Eskimo groups.
3. The correlation between capacity and cranial length in
this Eskimo group supports the writer’s previous observation that it is “rather higher in the males than in the
females. ’’
4. The correlations between capacity-length and capacitybreadth in all the Eskimo groups investigated by the writer
are much higher than those for the Hamann Museum white
crania. The correlation between capacity and cranial height
is practically the same in both races.
LITERATURE CITED
1 CAXERON,
JOHN1923 Rep. Canad. Arct. Exp., XII, Pt. C, Ottawa.
2
1926 Correlations in the Eskimo crania of the Canadian Arctic
Xxpedition. Trans. Rny. Sac. Can., XX.
3 Catalogue of human crania in the U. S. National Museum Collections, no. 1,
1924, Washington.
4 HRDLICKA, ALE$ 1925 Relation of the size of the head and skull to capacity
in the two sexes. Am. J. Phys. Anthrop., VIII, no. 3.
5 LEE, A., AND PEARSON,
K. 1901 A first study of the correlations of t h e
human skull. Trans. Roy. Soc., A, XCVI.
6 TODD,T. WINGATE1923 Crania1 capacity and linear dimensions i n white
and negro. Am. J. Phys. Anthrop., VI, no. 2.
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