If there be any one thing in the empirical psychology of the past which has been considered settled past all controversy, it is the unity and continuity of human personality. Whatever might be believed or doubted concerning the after life, for this life at least believers and skeptics alike are united in the full assurance of a true, permanent, and unmistakable self. The philosopher Reid, a hundred years ago, in discussing this subject, wrote as follows: -

"My thoughts and actions and feelings change every moment. They have no continued but a successive existence, but that self or I to which they belong is permanent, and has the same relation to all succeeding thoughts, actions, and feelings which I call mine. The identity of a person is perfect - it admits of no degrees - and is not divisible into parts."

Now, while this dogma, which still expresses 116 the general consensus of mankind, may in a sense be well founded, still certain facts have been ascertained by the observant scouts in the outlying fields of psychology which, unless they can be interpreted to mean something different from their seeming and obvious import, make strongly against that stability and unquestioned oneness of human personality about which every individual in his own consciousness may feel so absolutely certain. What are these facts which have come to the notice of students of psychology?

The case of Fe1ida X., reported by Dr. Azam of Bordeaux, is one of the earliest to attract the serious attention of medical men and students of psychology, and has become classic in relation to the subject.

She was a nervous child, given to moody spells and hysterical attacks, and, in 1856, when she was about fourteen years of age, she also began to have more serious attacks of an epileptiform character, from which she would emerge into a new and unusual condition, which was at first taken to be somnambulism. In this condition her general appearance was quite changed, and she talked and acted in a manner altogether different from her usual self. These attacks were at first very brief, lasting only a few minutes, but gradually they increased in duration until they occupied hours, and even days.

In her usual state she had no recollection and no knowledge whatever of her second condition, and the whole time spent in that condition was to her a blank; on the other hand, all the different occasions when she had been in this second condition were linked together, constituting a distinct chain of memories and a personality just as consciously distinct and conspicuous as her original self. In her second state she not only had the distinct memories connected with her own secondary personality, but she also knew facts concerning the first or original self, but only as she might have knowledge of any other person.

The two personalities were entirely different in character and disposition; the original one was sickly, indolent, and melancholy, while the new one was in good health, and in disposition bright, cheerful, and industrious. She married early in life, and was intelligent and efficient in the care of her family, rearing children and attending to the little business of a shop. At length this secondary self came to occupy nearly the whole time, and considered herself the normal personality, as, indeed, she was, being superior in every way to the original one. She knew very well how unhappy and miserable was the condition of the primary self, and, while she pitied her and did what she could to assist her, she disliked to have her return. She called the condition of the primary self, "that stupid state."

The lapses of the original or No. 1 personality became at length so frequent, or rather, so continuous, that she lost the proper knowledge and relation of things about her. She was a stranger in her own home, and on that account became still more morose and melancholy. To relieve as much as possible this distressing state of affairs the second self, or No. 2, when she knew that No. I was about to appear, would write her a letter, informing her of the general condition of the household, whom she might expect to meet, and where she would find certain needful articles; she would also offer advice regarding the conduct of affairs, which was always appropriate and useful and far superior to the judgment of the original self in the matters to which it referred.

As a second well marked and abundantly authenticated example of this divided or secondary personality, I will refer to a case in our own country and in our own vicinity.

Jan. 17th, 1887, Ansel Bourne, an evangelist, left his home in Rhode Island, and, after transacting some business in Providence, one item of which was to draw some money to pay for a farm for which he had bargained, he went to Boston, then to New York, then to Philadelphia, and, finally, to Norristown, Penn., fifteen or twenty miles from Philadelphia, where he opened a small store for the sale of stationery, confectionery, and five-cent articles. In this business he was known as A. J. Brown. Pie lived in a room partitioned off from the back of the store, eating, sleeping, and doing his own cooking there. He rented the store from a Mr. Earl, who also, with his family, lived in the building. Mr. Brown went back and forth to Philadelphia for goods to keep up his stock, and seems to have conducted his business as if accustomed to it.

Sunday, March 13th, he went to church, and at night went to bed as usual. On Monday, March 14th, about 5 o'clock in the morning, he awoke and found himself in what appeared to him an altogether new and strange place; he thought he must have broken into the place, and was much troubled, fearing arrest. Finally, after waiting two hours in great uneasiness of mind, he got up and found the door locked on the inside. He went out into the hall, and, hearing some one moving about, he rapped at the door. Mr. Earl, his landlord, opened it, and said: "Good-morning, Mr. Brown."