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Discernment of human races by blood. Particularly of Russians from Jews

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Leningrad, Russia
The problem of the origin of races has always interested
the most advanced minds, naturally giring birth t o many different theories. The existing theories about races are dependent on generalities about them, as well as on the
subjective opinions of authors on the historical mission of
each particular nation. From the scientific point of view, the
question of racial entity may be formulated thus :
I s there such a thing as an unchangeable race, and, if so,
what are its physical and mental peculiarities? However, it
is urgent first to answer the question: Are there, in general,
unchangeable races? For instance, Franz Miiller declares :
“Races are nonsenses, a pure charlatanry.” Jehring writesZ:
“Substitute nations in their cradles, and Semites will ’grow
out of Aryans, and out of Aryans-Semites. ”
The doctrine of the unchangeableness of races is dependent
011 the theory of races. There are four such theories:
1. The linguistical theory, which determines races by their
language and by their culture.
2. The anthropological theory, which bases its data on
somatic features (form of skull and face, color of eyes and
hair, statnre, etc.).
3. The biological theory, which regards races from the
point of view of natural selection, that is, from dependence
‘The report was made February 19, 1926, in the Anthropological Society in
Vorgeschichte der Judoeuropaer, 1894.
E. 0. M A N O I L O F F
on environment aiid on the inborn nature of races. According to this theory, races are the product of their environment, acting through the unequal accom&odations of
the indiriduals.
4. The sociological theory, which considers races as a social
formation, i.e., as a product of social organization in its historical development.
Of all these theories, the anthropological is the only one
which is grounded on the unchangeableness of races. Antliropology, as mentioned above, is chiefly engrossed with external
features-with the form of the skull and of the skeleton, the
color of the skin, the color of the hair, the color of the eyes,
the general aspect of the hair, the height of the body of the
individual in relation to build and to units of stature. And
yet, many quite objective investigators, as, f o r instance,
Ripley, insist on the constancy of the physical features of
races, especially of the form of the skull. Nevertheless, the
following circumstance proves the inconsistency of the anthropological theory, especially as far as concerns the skull.
Many years ago, a common grave was opened in the Paris
cemetery, which, it was unanimously supposed, contained the
remains of soldiers belonging to the allied armies which besieged Paris in 1814. A renowned anthropologist took the
measures of the skulls and defined some of them as belonging
t o Aryans, some others to Finns, Bashkirs, Kalmyks, and
other nationalities. However, it was discovered later on that
this place was the burial-ground of Paris women, victims of
the cholera in 1837.3 So easy is it, also, to make a mistake
when trying to determine the race peculiarities of nations long
extinct, f o r instance, by means of pictures of individuals see11
on ancient Egyptian monuments. At present we may say
it is impossible to establish the cultural properties of a given
race according to the size of the skull. Skulls of the same
size belong to the most different nationalities with the most
different civilizations.
Pasmanik, Jewish Encyclopedia, vol. XIII.
Contemporary anthropology devotes itself not only to the
aforementioned study, but equally to physiology, and thus has
found that differences in anatomical deviations of one race
from another impart corresponding hereditary differences in
function, siich as racial differences in muscular strength,
nervous activity, and longevity. These questions are principally studied and elaborated by a new independent discipline-the
science of constitution. On the problem of
constitution is riveted just now the center of universal interest; it teaches us that all these positive and negative
qualities are transmitted by heredity. For this discipline
some chemical blood reactions have a particular interest;
these may be hereditarily transmitted, but may just as well be
a b ~ e n t . Interest
in the study of chemical blood reaction in
man, both as individuals and as races, has been aroused
principally by the prominent action exercised by blood agglutination in the life of man, especially in his struggle against
pathogenic microbes.
Instead of agglutination of bacteria, hemo-agglutination
can serve now as the object of a parallel investigation,
namely, the agglutination of erythrocytes, that glue together
under the action of a foreign serum. It is well known that,
relatively to man, it has been established long ago that the
blood corpuscles belonging t o one man often glue together
with the serum of another. Landsteiner5 has shown that
mankind can be divided into four groups on the basis of
hemo-agglutination. Landsteiner 's studies have brought
about investigations of whole masses of people of different
countries. Such broad investigations have been performed
by Hirschfeld on captive soldiers in S a l ~ n i k iby
, ~ Veszetezki
in Prag,' by Moss in America,* by Dungern in Germai~y.~
'Dungern u. Hirschfeld. Zeitsehrift f u r Immunitltsforsehung, Bd. IX, 1911.
' Zentralbl. Bakter., XXVIT,
Immunitatsf., 1911.
'i Biochem. Z., CVII, 1911.
* Fol. Seriol., 1920.
'Z. Immunitatsf. IV, 1909; VI, 1910; VIII, 1911.
' Z.
E. 0. M A N O I L O F F
Dr. M. Awdeewa and Dr. M. Grinzewitchl0 report, in a very
careful work, the results of their investigations in the Moscow
population. They found that of 1600 persons, 6.5 per cent
belonged t o the first group; 38.5 per cent, to the second; 23
per cent, to the third, and 33 per cent, t o tlie fourth. Like
investigations have been made by Rubashkine and Wagnerll
for the whole Russian population. Wishnewskyl2 has investigated the population of the Tchuvash province ; he has
worked chiefly on Tchuvashes and Russians, namely with 951
Tchuvashes and 228 Russians.
The author found that Russians of different provinces have
a biochemical race indicator not lower than 1.2 in European
Russia, whereas the Tchuvashes, w-itlr their characteristic
blood indicator, have less than one (0.8), i.e., that they belong
to populations having the quantitative predomination of the
third group over the second.l3
G. Popovicin14 has investigated the biological structure of
hlood in Roumania according to geographical position, and
has found that the indices f o r isohemo-agglutinations of the
population of Roumania are distributed unequally. He found
that the Transylvania Romans differ from the primitive
Roman population of ancient Roumania. The index of the
Transylvania Romans is 2.15, whereas the index of the
Romans from tlie ancient kingdom is 1.8. The author gives
an explanation of this difference j he thinks that in the localities where there is a high index, the population has updergone crossing with different tribes that have immigrated from
the East. S. Manuila15 has published the results of his investigation on eight tribes living in Roumania. The results
obtained hy this author correspond t o the earlier indications
of otlier authors. Mariuila found the index for Bulgarians
"Results in Experimental Biology (Russian), vol. I, no. 3-4,
On hereditary properties of blood, p. 352.
l1 Wratschebnojc Delo, 1924-1925.
R. Ae. Sci., U.R.S.S., 1935.
Is Wishnewsky, Wratsehebnoje Delo, 1925, no. 6.
l4 C. R. SOC. Hiol., XC, 1924.
l5 C. R. SOC. Biol., XC, 1924.
N. Koltzoff,
to be 2.3; for Hungarians, 1.6; for Jews, 1.6. The index for
Saxons living in Roumania is 3.4; they emigrated t o Roumania from the Rheiii province in the fourteenth century, and
their index is higher than the index of Germans from Germany, and is therefore placed between that of the English
and that of the French. Kirohara SchinhilGhas found, on
the ground of his investigations, that the biochemical index
of the Japanese varies between 1.5 and 1.8. He found the
index f o r Koreans to be 0.89, 1.00, and 0.41, from which he
draws the conclusion that the nearer the approach to the
South, the nearer the Korean index approaches to the Japanese. On the ground of his observations on the heredity of
specific blood-group structures, the author concludes that,
judging from a group of children, it is possible to determine
the blood group of each parent. The same can be said about
determining the father’s group by the mother’s and child’s
groups. And, inversely, the mother’s group may be determined by knowledge of the father’s and the child’s.
S n attempt has been made lately to clear up the mechanism
of the isohemo-agglutination in man. Thus, L. Hadjopulos
and I.. Renegalos Barbon17 have proved that the isohemoagglutination aiid hemolyzation lie in the stroma of the red
blood corpusclcs.
After these communications of a preliminary character, I
come to my own investigations. There is no doubt whatever
that all races without exception have undergone aiid undergo
new crossiiigs with one another. But the problem of races,
i n relation t o the influence of crossing, is being cleared up
only as we become acquainted with the law of Mendel; aiid
it is easy t o prove that all the crossings of populatioiis have
been subjected to this law. For me it is absolutely clear that,
by analogy to the presence of liormoneslRcharacterizing this
“ Z . klin. Med., XCIX, June 4, 1924.
l’ The nature of human isohemo-agglutinogens.
Med., 1924.
’* See my work in Munch. med. Woch., 1924.
h o e . Soe. Experim. Biol. &
o r that sex, there must be something correspondingly specific of race in the blood of different races of mankind. This
specific substance gives the seal of the given race and serves
to distinguish one race from another. And if this be right,
the unknown substance existing in the blood must be discovered in some way o r other. After long searching, I have
chanced to discover a reaction giving an answer to the abovementioned analogy.
I admit the impossibility of certifying that the reaction
which I propose gives 100 per cent accuracy, but this is quite
natural, for we are occupied here with complex biological
phenomena, brought about by the crossing of races, f o r which
reason there are evidently people with vaguely expressed
race qualities.
Considering the fact that, on account of many circumstances, the Jewish race has, in comparison with the Russian,
much less mixture of blood, 1 have chosen, on the one hand,
the Jewish race and, on the other, the Russian. Jews as well
as Russians, but especially the last, have been questioned
about the origin of their ancestors, and only those Russians
taken into consideration who had at least three truly Russian
ancestors, both from paternal and from maternal sides,
leaving aside the question of religion. Blood %-astaken from
the cubital vein and, if possible, the reaction undertaken the
same day. I n this way, from the year 1922 up to September 1,
1925, I have investigated 2000 people, 800 of m7hom were Jews
and 1120 Russians. By the end of 1923, I could distinguish,
with the help of reagents, Jewish blood from Eussian in 88.6
per cent of the cases tested. Wishing t o rerify my test and
especially to exhibit this result at the VI I I Conference of
Russian Therapeutists,lg I addressed myself to some persons
with the request to obtain Jewish and Russian blood answering to the aforenamed conditions; at the same time I expressly begged them to mark the test-tubes o n l y with
numbers, without either family names o r designation of
nation. Many persons answered my request, for which I express my sincere gratitude. Materials were sent to me:
lnMiineli. med. Woch., 1925, no. 51.
1. From the clinic of Prof. P. S. Medowikoff by his adjunct, Dr. s. M. Kogan, from whom I received 81 numbered
test-tubes with blood, namely, 37 from Jewish children and
44 from Russian. Of these I determined correctly 75 ( 9 1 per
cent) and incorrectly only 6.
2. Dr. Rachel Liwschitz, assistant in the Physiotherapeutic
Institute, obtained for me 28 numbered test-tubes with blood,
16 containing Jewish blood and 1 2 Russian blood. I determined correctly all cases (100 per cent).
3. From the chief physician of the German Red Cross
Hospital, Doctor Kastians, I received 29 test-tubes (the blood
was taken by Doctor Schiele) ; of these I determined correctly
in 25 cases (86.2 per cent) and incorrectly only in 4.
4. From Dr. A. I. Shingarewa I received 10 test-tubes, 5
from Jews and 5 from Russians; I gave correct answers in
7 cases (70 per cent), incorrect ones in only 3.
5 . From Dr. V. I. Popow, assistant in the clinic of Professor Oppel, 28 test-tubes were received, 14 of which came from
Jews, and 14 from Russians; I answered right in 26 cases
(92.8 per cent) and made a mistake only in 2.
6. I received from Adjunct Dr. A. E. Solowtzowa 18 testtubes; answered correctly t o all (100 per cent).
7. I obtained from Dr. J. F. Feokritowa 8 numbered testtubes, 4 with Jewish blood and 4 with Russian. I gave right
answers in all cases (100 per cent).
Thus I have irivestigated for my report 202 test-tubes and
answered correctly to 187, i.e., in 91.7 per cent, and o d y to
15 incorrectly.
For these reactions the following reagents are needed :
1st reagent-1 per cent alcoholic solution of methyl-blue
(Grubler ) .
2nd reagent-1 per cent alcoholic solution of cresyl-violet
(Griibler) .
3rd reagent-$ of 1per cent solution of silver nitrate.
4th r e a g e n t 4 0 per cent solution of hydrochloric acid.
5th reagent-1 per cent aqueous solution of potassium permanganate, freshly prepared.
The reaction proceeds in the following way:
Add to 3 cc. of unheated emulsion of red blood corpuscles
( 3 to 5 per cent) o r directly t o the coagulum of blood three
to four times as much (in volume) sodium chloride (physiological solution) and mix with a glass stick so as to obtain
a rather thick emulsion. Then add 1drop of the hrst reagent,
shake; 5 drops of second reagent, shake again; 3 drops of
third reagent, shake; 1 drop of fourth reagent, and, lastly,
3 to 5 drops of the fifth reagent.
The result will be correct if the fluid with Jewish blood
proves to be paler than that with Russian blood. In Jewish
blood the color cresyl-violet must disappear entirely or almost
so, and the blue or blue-green shade alone remain; in Russian
blood the cresyl-violet color will partly remain insoluble, and
we see generally a blue-red coloring.
It is useful to note that if some investigators work with
a 3 per cent emulsion and others with 3 per cent, the coloring
will naturally be different, but one thing is sure-the coloring- of Jewish blood will be paler than that of Russian.
I deem it urgent to remark that clear (exact) results depend exclusively on good colors. The most important are
methyl-blue and cresyl-violet, which show the difference between Jewish and Russian blood. I advise, previously, to
standardize the reagents themselves, chiefly methyl-blue and
cresyl-violet. Such colorizers must be chosen which possess
the necessary degree of oxidation. If the selection of colors
be successful, the cresyl-violet will dissolve completely in
Jewish blood, whereas in Russian blood it dissolves only
partly, but never completely.
In order to obtain a good difference, it may be necessary
with certain colors to add not one, but two or three drops of
the fourth reagent (hydrochloric acid). The same concerns
also the fifth reagent, where it may be needful to add not
three, but from five to eight, and sometimes even more, drops
of potassium permanganate. The last solution must always
be freshly prepared-fifteen
t o twenty minutes before the
beginning of the test. The test-tubes must be strictly of the
same size and always absolutely clean.
If you wish to decolorize Russian blood and to compare it
with Jewish, you must add t o the Russian test-tuhe as much
of the fourth reagent and twice as much of the fifth reagent
(in drops) as M-as used formerly. This means that the oxidizing process goes on more swiftly in the Jewish blood than
in the Russian, or, so to say, the oxidizing process goes on
more slowly in the Russian blood than in the Jewish.
I have mentioned above that my accounting concerns
principally Jewish and Russian blood, and first of all, GreatRussian. Most naturally, I investigated also other nations ;
by the way, Germans, Chinese, Xsthonians, Finns, Poles,
A4rmenians,and others.
This gave me the impression that other nations could be
discerned in the same way. Unfortunately, the lack of
material makes it impossible for me to speak about this 1vit.h
certainty, as I speak of the Jewish and the Russian races.
Further, I have investigated the blood of people born of
mixed marriages, namely, in six cases, the father was
Russian, the mother Polish; in two cases, the father was
Russian, the mother Jewish; in eight cases, the father was
Russian,,the mother Finnish ;in twenty-three cases, the father
was Russian, the mother German; in two cases, the father
was Russian, the mother Tartar; in two cases, the father mas
Russian, the mother Armenian.
On the grouiid of this restricted material, I can only remark that in mixed marriages, in cases in which the children
had a Russian father and a Jewish or Polish mother, in such
Russians the oxidizing process is stronger than in purely
Russian ones and the reagent can give a false answer. I n
cases in which the father was Russian and the mother
German, Finnish or Tartar, the oxidizing process goes on
more slowly, wherefore the reaction differs little from the
purely Russian.
It is clear that this material is too insignificant to allow
me to affirm anything positive, but I hope that in the future
I shall find means to verify these observations on more
The proposed reaction can have a certain medieolegal importance if it relates to the problem of determining the
parentage of a child, born of a Russian mother and a Jewish
father. So, for instance, a physician brought me three testtubes with blood, two of which contained the blood of grownup people, the third, a child’s, requesting me to determine,
by the blood, to whom the child belonged. The test-tubes
bore the numbers 1, 2, and 3. Immediately, in the presence
of tlie physician, I investigated first no. 1, then no. 2, and
determined that no. 1belonged to a Jew. This made a strong
impression on the physician, and he admitted that my definition was right. After that I investigated the child’s blood
(no. 3 ) , then placed the test-tube with this blood between the
test-tubes no. 1 and no. 2, letting the light of an electric lamp
(50 o r 100 candles) run through i t ; thus I demonstrated that
the child’s blood stood nearer to no. 1 (i.e., to the Jewish
blood) ; on this ground, I affirmed that the child’s father must
be a Jew, and not a Russian. The physician was greatly
pleased with my investigation and related t o me that the
whole thing referred to the following fact: A Jew, married
t o a Russian, had begun, after the birth of the child, to suspect his wife of having committed adultery with a Russian.
The physician added that my definition was near t o truth,
as all legal investigations pointed to the same, so that the
husband’s suspicions proved quite unfounded.
Dr. S. M. Kogan, from tlie pediatric clinic of Professor
Medowikoff, submitted my race reaction to a trial, and had
90 per cent correct results. This author made in this case
most interesting tests. To one group of children he injected
subcutaneously adrenalin immediately after the blood had
been taken; to another group he injected pilokarpin. After
a lapse of two, four, six, and thirty-six hours, he took some
more blood. It happened that in Jewish children who were
injected with adrenalin, there resulted, six hours after in-
jection, the same coloring as in true Russian. Only after a
lapse of thirty-six hours, race reaction gave again the correct
The test with pilokarpin in Jewish blood test-tubes gave the
right answer, even a more intensive one than before the injection. On the ground of his investigations, Dr. s. M.
Iiogan comes to the conclusion that Jews have a more vegetative and Russians a more sympathetic disposition.20
JVe cannot say much about the chemism of the race reaction itself, principally for the reason that the chemical part
played by cresyl-violet is unkonwn to us. Its structure has as
yet not been made known publicly in literature, but it seems
that the colorizer belongs to the set of thiosones or oxasones.
Methyl-blue and cresyl-violet oxidize with more difficulty than
The oxidizing process here is undoubted, but only in the
presence of sediment of chloric silver, which, by adsorption,
can eliminate bodies and substances from the emulsion.
Cresyl-violet disappears because it oxidizes. Silver nitrate
oxidizes, too. I have chosen such colorizers which possess
just the necessary degree of oxidation.
On the ground of all that I have mentioned above, the
following conclusions may be drawn :
1. The determination of different races by blood, with the
help of reagents-in
our cases to distinguish Jewish blood
from Russian (Great-Russian)-gives the correct result in
91.7 per cent of the cases tested.
2. The oxidizing process is produced in Jewish blood more
quickly than in Russian.
3. Tn medicolegal investigations this reaction may give
certain indications.
4. I n mixed marriages reaction on our material gives indications of the influence exercised on one race by another.
*'Report made during the session of the First Russian Pediatric Congress,
June 3, 1925, in Leningrad.
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