This, the last remaining order of the Mammalia, comprises Man (Homo) alone, and it will therefore require but little notice here, the peculiarities of Man's mental and physical structure properly belonging to other branches of science.
Zoologically, Man is distinguished from all other Mammals by his habitually erect posture and bipedal progression. The lower limbs are exclusively devoted to progression and to supporting the weight of the body. The anterior limbs are shorter than the posterior, and have nothing whatever to do with progression. The thumb is opposable, and the hands are prehensile, the fingers being provided with nails. The toes of the hind-limb are also furnished with nails, but the hallux is not opposable to the other digits, and the feet are therefore useless as organs of prehension. The foot is broad and plantigrade, and the whole sole is applied to the ground in walking.
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The brain is more largely developed and more abundantly furnished with large and deep convolutions than is the case with any other Mammal. The mammae are pectoral, and the placenta is discoidal and deciduate.
Man is the only terrestrial Mammal in which the body is not provided, at any rate dorsally, with a covering of hair.
The zoological or anatomical distinctions between Man and the other Mammals are thus seen to be of no very striking nature, and certainly of themselves would not entitle us to consider Man as forming more than a distinct order. When, however, we take into account the vast and illimitable psychical differences, both intellectual and moral - differences which must entail corresponding structural distinctions - between Man and the highest Quadrumana, it becomes a question whether the group Bimana should not have the value of a distinct sub-kingdom; whilst there can be little hesitation in giving Man, at any rate, a class to himself. At any rate, man's psychical peculiarities are as much an integral portion, or more, of his totality, as are his physical characters, and, as Dr Pritchard says, - "The sentiments, feelings, sympathies, internal consciousness, and mind, and the habitudes of mind and action thence resulting, are the real and essential characteristics of humanity."
As regards the distribution of the order Bimana in time, we have doubtless yet much to learn. So far as is certainly known at present, no remains of Man, in the form of bones or implements, have as yet been detected in deposits of greater age than the later half of the Post-Pliocene period, at which time Man was associated in Western Europe with a number of extinct Mammalia.