Third: There is no blood supply between the mother and her child. The child has its own blood and its own circulation. The unborn child is dependent upon the mother for oxygen and food only. These it extracts from the mother in the remarkably adjusted processes of interchange which take place in the placenta or after-birth. The mother passes on to her child nourishment, not shock or mental influences.

Nature has protected the child from all possibility of "marking" by mental impressions, by arranging that there may be no nerve and blood supply between mother and child. The mother's blood cannot get through the placenta into the child. The placenta acts as a filter through the membranes of which the needed nutriment passes, while almost everything that can poison or injure the child is filtered out. Some poisons can and do get through to the child. But on the whole the baby is placed safely out of harm's way so that even physical violence seldom reaches it. Railroad accidents, auto smashups, jars, shocks, etc., seldom reach it.

One "impressionist" says that there is "a constant interchange of the blood in its (the baby's) body with that in hers" and that, "since the mother, as has been shown, can transmit through her blood certain characteristics of mind and body not her own", "all nervous impressions which have produced an alteration of either a temporary or permanent character in the circulating fluid of the mother are communicated to the child."

If he will limit this to nutritive alterations, well and good, but otherwise it is pure bunk, with not a single leg of fact to stand on.

Fourth: The development of the form of the child is definitely determined during the first six weeks of pregnancy and cannot be subsequently altered. by the end of the sixth week the fetus is a practically complete human being. Most instances of "marking occur after this time, when it is no longer possible to convert the arms and hands into the paddles of a mole, for instance, or to produce twin toes. Errors and defects in development take place during the first six weeks and usually during the first two or three weeks following conception.

How, then, account for these "marks" which are seen in rare instances. We may as well admit that we cannot account for all of them. Some of them are results of heredity, others of "accident." Whatever "mark" may appear, there can always be found something to refer it to--a mere coincidence, however. These prenatal accidents are comparatively very rare--most babies are born normal.

A child may become entangled in the cord and the circulation of some part of the body be interferred with. From this cause the development of an arm or leg may be hindered. A lack of sufficient amniotic fluid may cause pressure on the child and handicap the development of some part. A fold in the uterus which prevents the blood from circulating is the usual cause of the absence of hands or feet. Such a child never had a hand or foot. A twisted hand or foot may be due to a wrinkle in the uterus or to injury at birth. A child born at nine months without hands is not due to the fact that the mother saw a horse get its fore legs cut off a month previously. Poisons may cause faulty development.

Faulty food, ill health in the mother, etc., simply tend to produce in the child a condition of lowered vitality and lessened resistance. The nature of the child will depend on its germ-cell heritage. A defect in the germ cell at the beginning will show up as a defect in the child.

A baby was born with one "calmish blue-gray eye" and the other "marked by the color and fire of the dashing young Spaniard's eye," who the mother had seen and been annoyed by almost daily during her pregnancy. "Always his appearance was most unexpected, and always accompanied by the rapt, passionate dark gaze." This seemed like a remakable case of maternal impression since neither of the child's parents had such eyes. Investigation, however, revealed that the grandparents of the baby's mother had just such eyes as the baby. It was just another case of heredity.

Mr. Wiggam tells us that he has investigated many thousands of cases of alleged birthmarks and has not found a single case yet. Dr. Erassmus Darwin, father of Chas. Darwin, asked 11,000 women in a maternity hospital, what birth marks they thought would appear on their babies and where they would be located. He recorded their answers. When the babies were born, they either had no mark at all, or in the few instances where there was a mark, it was located somewhere else on the body and was not what the mother expected.

Finally, "marks" resemble the things they are said to in much the same way that a white cow becomes a great ghost in the dark. There is a large element of imagination in the matter. A common mark is a red spot or blood-vessel tumor caused by an enlargement of the capillaries in some particular spot. Immagination can easily make this resemble a strawberry or other red object.

Expectant mothers should remember that prenatal accidents are very rare, that natural law and the mechanism God has prepared for the protection of the child, so that it may have the very best that nature has to offer in the beginning of its life, may be trusted to safeguard the best interests of the child. No matter how well authenticated a reported case of birth marks may appear, do not listen to it and do not be disturbed by it. Your mental states can injure your child only in so far as they derange your nutrition and thus cause a supply of faulty nutriment to reach the child. They can help the child only in so far as they promote health and thus assure good nourishment for the child.