Ernest Rumley Dawson.

The causation of sex in man; a new theory of sex based on clinical materials together with chapters on forecasting or predicting the sex of the unborn child and on the determination or production of either sex at will online

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date of her confinement as July 20, 1902; I therefore pre-
dicted, when she engaged my services on May 9, 1902, that
she would have a boy if the child was born in August,
but a girl if born in July. She was delivered of a girl at
3.30 a.m., July n, 1902.

Mrs. T. R. expected in July; I calculated her date as
August, so prophesied she would have a boy in July, or
girl if born in August 1902. It was a boy, born 7 a.m.,
July 23, 1902.

Mrs. B. expected, she said, in October 1903; I calculated
her date as September 26, 1903, and told her on July 24,
1903, when she engaged me to attend her, that she would
have a girl if born in September, a boy if born in October.
She was delivered of a girl, midday, September 26, 1903.

These, then, are some only of the cases from my own
practice, in which I have correctly foretold the sex; in
some several hours before the birth, in others weeks and



196 THE CAUSATION OF SEX

months even, ranging from two to six months, prior to
birth. And for several of them I have written certificates,
signed not only by the laity, that I did correctly forecast
the sex of their children.

Probably, after testing my plan for forecasting the sex of
a child, by the data of members of his own family, the reader
will be sufficiently interested to test it by the Royal and
aristocratic families, the dates of whose children's births he
can readily find recorded in books.

He will find that in nearly all cases the sex of a subse-
quent child could have been correctly foretold, owing to
the previous child's sex and birthday being known.

In. some few cases errors may appear, owing chiefly to
premature births, stillbirths, miscarriages, etc., of which
naturally he will find no record; and it is suggestive that in
some of the errors he will find an unusually long interval
has occurred between the two births, the inference being
that a miscarriage or stillbirth had taken place in between.

Hence a doctor in actual attendance on patients whom
he knows, will obtain a larger percentage of correct results,
than would be obtained by looking up the recorded dates
of births, in families of whose intimate medical history he
is ignorant; for he would not know the mother's menstrual
rhythm, nor whether a child was born to its expected time
or no.



CHAPTER XXIV

DIFFICULTIES AND SOURCES OF ERROR
EXPLAINED

THE chief causes of error in predicting, as also in determining
the sex of the next child are three in number :

First. Prematurity or post-maturity of birth of a
precedent child.

Secondly. Irregularity of menstruation (ovulation) as
well as unusual menstrual rhythm. Instead of the 28-day
type it may be

25 days' interval; there would be 14 periods for one year,
15 during the second year, and 14 during the third year,
and so on.

27 days' interval; there would be 13 periods for one year,
and for the next year 14 periods.

This mountain in the eyes of one reviewer, I have practi-
cally found to be indeed but a molehill.

30 days' interval; there would be 12 periods per annum
for five years, with a thirteenth in the sixth year; and 12
again in the seventh and following years.

Any of the above, if calculated as of the 28-day type,
and always giving 13 periods per annum, will lead to errors.

Thirdly. Ovulation periods which occur between the
22nd and 29 th of most calendar months, inasmuch as they
may give rise to a birth in one or other of two differently
named calendar months, are a fruitful source of error;
as are those births which occur between the ist and 7th
of a month. Because the ovulation which gives rise to them,
is in a calendar month of different name to that for the.ovula-
tions for the greater part of that particular calendar month.

Under the heading of prematurity of birth come those
cases where children are born on the last few days of a
month, instead of, as expected, in the first few days of the

197



198 THE CAUSATION OF SEX

month following. A few days make all the difference
between a right and a wrong forecast e.g. birth on May 30
instead of June 2. A comparatively trifling domestic
incident e.g. a stumble or fall, a dose of medicine, a quarrel
or fright, a long motor drive, and many others besides
may be the inciting cause of the earlier onset of labour.
Every practical obstetrician meets with such cases and in-
cidents, though they are not mentioned, and do not appear
alongside the list of the dates of birth of the children in the
family Bible. In many cases, too, the medical attendant,
by the use of his midwifery instruments, so expedites the
labour that he makes what would have been an August i
birth into an arrival on July 31.

The following cases of families' birth dates appear to
show errors when worked out by my rule, but they are not
really so.

Mrs. L. D. S. had her children thus:

Theoretical
Ovulation Period.

r-Boy, December 31, 1899 .. .. March 26, 1899. -i
LGirl, June 30, 1903 .. .. September 23, 1902. J

The above case shows how births on the last day or two
of a calendar month should usually count as a birth in the
month following. My method of forecasting and deter-
mining sex allows only 28 days to an ovulation period,
and so we get 13 such in the year. It is therefore un-
reasonable, in some cases at least, to expect births late
in a month, or the first day or two of a month, to work out
correctly. Certain June ovulation periods, e.g., will give
a birth in the last day or two of March or the first few days
of April; so that one ovulation may actually cause a birth
in either of two calendar months. Hence we get errors
from this cause.

The case shows that an ovulation or menstrual " month "
or period differs from a calendar month, just as the lunar
months do.

In the above example, if December 31, 1899, be reckoned
as January 1900, and June 30, 1903, be reckoned as July,
the births come correctly to each other. The ovulation
dates, it will be seen, come correctly to each other.



DIFFICULTIES AND ERRORS EXPLAINED 199

Mrs. C. O. had her family thus:
Boy, August 17,



r>oy, August 17, loy^, i v 1
r Girl, July 30, 1898.

If reckoned as August 1898. J
LBoy, February i, 1901. 1 x "^
Boy, May 31, 1907.

J



February i, 1 90 1. I - "* -" *
May 31, 1907.
If reckoned as June 1907.



This striking example shows the dates of birth all wrong,
but made correct if, the dates of the calendar months not
being allowed to exceed the 28 days of an ovulation period,
the births are reckoned as occurring in the month following.

Mrs. J. E. had her children thus:

Boy, Joseph, May 18, 1881.

Girl, Elizabeth, January 29, 1883.=

Boy, Edward, June 2, 1884.

Boy, Charles, November 10, 1885.=

Girl, Susan, March 25, 1890.

If January 29, Elizabeth, be counted as a February
birth, all the dates are correct.
Mrs. C. E. F. had her family thus:

Boy, September 30, 1898.-! x

Boy, May 19, 1901.

Boy, January 18, 1903. J R

If September 30 counts as an October birth, all the
dates are correct.
Mrs. B. had

A boy, January 6, 1903. -i
Another boy, May 30, 1906. J'

If May be counted as June, the dates come right.
Mrs. T. H. F. had

A girl, May 31, 1898.

Another girl, February 16, 1900.

So if May 31 is counted as June, these dates come right,
Mrs. L. H. C. had her family thus:

Girl, May 30, 1901.

Expected in June by the patient and myself,

her doctor.
Boy, March 18, 1903.

Expected by me March 17.
Boy, June 18, 1904.

Expected by me second week of June.
Girl, December 13, 1905.




202 THE CAUSATION OF SEX

Boy No. i, born on December 31, should rank as a
January 1878 child; he then comes right to No. 2.

No. 2 and No. 6 come right, but all the others are wrong.
The patient cannot have been regularly of the 28-day type
of menstruation and ovulation.

CASE B.

1. Girl, April 6, 1886. -, Known to be premature (?

2. Girl, March 24, 1887. month child). -i

3. Boy, October 3 1, 1888. = x Also if reckoned as November -

4. Girl, July 30, 1890. And if reckoned as August

5. Girl, March 6, 1892.

6. Boy, September 13,

7. Boy, October i, 1894.

8. Girl, March i, 1899.

9. Boy, September 21, 1903.

This case illustrates different points already alluded to,
3 and 4 being correct to each other, also when counted as
births in the succeeding months, in which case 3 would
also come right with 2; though 5 comes wrong to 4 if this
is reckoned as August. But at least six dates then come
right.

The following is a similar case from my own lists :

Mrs. B. M. L. had her family thus:

1. Girl, May 9, 1852. -|

2. Girl, May 12, 1854.=^ R

3. Boy, June 5, 1856. J R ^

4. Girl, October 29, 1858.

5. Boy, March i, 1 86 1.

6. Boy, October 29, 1862.

7. Boy, June 17, 1864.

8. Boy, May 8, 1866.

9. Boy, September 29, 1869.

Here 2 and 3 come right to the first born. Then 4, 6,
and 9, are awkward dates at the months' end. If 4 is
counted as November, she comes right with 3 and 5; but
if 6 is counted as November the dates come wrong !

If 9 is counted as October, he comes right to 8, not other-
wise. Note that 3 and 7 come right to each other. Th3
case illustrates that the last day or two of a month and the
first few days (No. 5, March i) give the most mistakes.




DIFFICULTIES AND ERRORS EXPLAINED 201

Similarly, Mrs. K. C. had

A girl, June 29, 1893.
Another girl, June 30, 1899.

Both come right with each other, as they would were
each date counted as a day in July.

Case reported by Mr. C. C. Hurst, sent him by Mr. G. P.
Mudge :

1. Girl, May 31, 1880.

2. Girl, November 20, 1881.

3. Girl, March 27, 1883.

4. Girl, June 4, 1884.

5. Girl, November 29, 1885.;

6. Boy, December 28, 1889..

This case was quoted in a scientific journal as rather
disproving the accuracy of my theory ! But if May 31
is counted as June all the dates come correct. One only
of the predictions comes wrong, as the dates stand, out of
the six !

In writing of the above case, it was said: "A theory
must not be judged too severely upon the basis of a few
exceptions. Ovulation may have been suspended or ir-
regular, or other disturbing causes may temporarily have
disturbed the normal sequence." The writer did not,
however, realise that usually there cannot be allowed
more than 28 days in a calendar month, if the calculations
are based on a 28-day ovulation interval. Why Mr. Hurst
maintained that No. 3 came wrong from No. 2 child, I
know not.

The following two cases were sent me by Professor L.
Doncaster. Both show irregularity of ovulation from some
evidently temporary cause; and though many of the dates
come wrong, both cases illustrate certain of my contentions.

CASE A.

1. Boy, December 31, 1877. If January 1878-1

2. Boy, August 4, 1879. r

3. Girl, June 18, 1881.

4. Girl, March 7, 1883.

5. Boy, January 2, 1885.

6. Girl, August 6, 1886.



202 THE CAUSATION OF SEX

Boy No. i, born on December 31, should rank as a
January 1878 child; he then comes right to No. 2.

No. 2 and No. 6 come right, but all the others are wrong.
The patient cannot have been regularly of the 28-day type
of menstruation and ovulation.

CASE B.



Known to be premature (?
month child). -i

Also if reckoned as November ^ R
And if reckoned as August J



1. Girl, April 6, 1886.

2. Girl, March 24, 1887.

3. Boy, October 3 1, 1888.

4. Girl, July 30, 1890.

5. Girl, March 6, 1892.

6. Boy, September 13, 1893.= R

7. Boy, October i, 1894.

8. Girl, March i, 1899.

g. Boy, September 21, 1903. I

This case illustrates different points already alluded to,
3 and 4 being correct to each other, also when counted as
births in the succeeding months, in which case 3 would
also come right with 2; though 5 comes wrong to 4 if this
is reckoned as August. But at least six dates then come
right.

The following is a similar case from my own lists :

Mrs. B. M. L. had her family thus:

1. Girl, May 9, 1852. i

2. Girl, May 12, 1854.=^ R

3. Boy, June 5, 1856. J R

4. Girl, October 29, 1858.

5. Boy, March i, 1861.

6. Boy, October 29, 1862.

7. Boy, June 17, 1864.

8. Boy, May 8, 1866.

9. Boy, September 29, 1869.

Here 2 and 3 come right to the first born. Then 4, 6,
and 9, are awkward dates at the months' end. If 4 is
counted as November, she comes right with 3 and 5; but
if 6 is counted as November the dates come wrong !

If 9 is counted as October, he comes right to 8, not other-
wise. Note that 3 and 7 come right to each other. Ths
case illustrates that the last day or two of a month and the
first few days (No. 5, March i) give the most mistakes.



DIFFICULTIES AND ERRORS EXPLAINED 203

CASES OF APPARENT ERRORS, DUE TO KNOWN
PREMATURITY OF BIRTH.

Mrs. L. B. H. had her family thus:

Ovulation Dates.

1. Boy, March 20, 1863. i x June 13, 1862. -,

2. Boy, November 25, 1864.! February 18, 1864. J

This boy was premature
and stillborn.

3. Girl, February 27, 1866. I May 23, 1865. =J

4. Girl, June 8, 1870. September i, 1869. J R

5. Girl, September 25, 1871. J R December 19, 1870. J

It will be seen here that the second boy was premature
and stillborn, being expected in December, the first five days
of which would still be a February ovulation. This makes
his date come wrong from his predecessor. After the
actual birth of the second child, the dates of the girls follow
correctly.

Mrs. McC. had her family thus:

1. Girl, July 17, 1907.

2. Boy, November 28, 1908.

3. Boy, January 6, 1910.

4. Girl, February 6, 1911.

This girl was not expected
till mid-March.

5. Boy, February n, 1912.

In this case the premature birth of the girl renders her
birth date wrong from her predecessor, the boy, No. 3;
had she arrived in March, her date would have been correct.
In reckoning for the next child, the actual date of birth
of No. 4 must be taken, and not the expected date ; and this
helps to prove that ovulation starts again soon after the
actual birth date, and not after the expected date. Note
how No. 5 comes right from the actual birth date of No. 4,
not from her expected date.

I attended Mrs. L. S. H. with her family, thus:

.1. Boy, October 31, 1898. -i
Expected mid-October. R

2. Boy, October i, 1900. =J

Expected October 8. R

3. Boy, April 6, 1904. J

Expected April 7. x

4. Boy, July 15, 1906.

Expected beginning of August. Died on
second day; premature and jaundiced.



204



THE CAUSATION OF SEX



Had this fourth child come when due, all the dates would
be correct. His known prematurity makes his date wrong.
Mrs. T V. had

A girl, April 4, 1915.

Expected April 9, 1915.
A boy, September 22, 1916.

The boy was expected by his mother and myself in mid-
October. As his birth date stands, he comes wrong from
his sister, but the absence on war service of the husband
makes the expected time of birth practically certain. Had
the child been born in October, the dates would be correct.

Mrs. J. C. T. had her family thus:

1. Boy, December 29, 1887.

He was two weeks overdue,

2. Girl, December 9, 1888.

Was a week premature.

3. Boy, May i, 1890.

About the expected time.

4. Girl, May 19, 1892.

Was at least two weeks
premature ; due first week
in June.

5. Girl, July 17, 1901.

Considered two to three weeks
premature ; expected in
August.

No. 4. being prematurely born in May instead of June,
comes wrong from No. 3. Had she been born in June as
expected, she would have been right.

No. 5, also premature, comes wrong from the actual
birth date of No. 4. Had she arrived when expected, the
dates would have been correct. The case shows two errors
due entirely to prematurity.

Mrs. G. H. B. had her family thus:

Ovulation Dates.

1. Boy, June 18, 1910.

Born two days before ex-
pected.

2. Boy, August 25, 1911.

Born three to four weeks




prematurely; expected
in September.
Boy, May 17, 1914.



September u, 1909.



R November 18, 1910.



December 1910.
August 10, 1913.



DIFFICULTIES AND ERRORS EXPLAINED 205

This case shows boy No. 2 prematurely born, and so
coming wrong to No. i. Had he been born when expected,
in September, the birth dates would be right, as also would
be his actual ovulation date, in December 1910, to September
1909. Note that the ovulation date of his actual birthday
is wrong from the ovulation date, September 1909, of No. i.

No. 3 comes correctly from the actual birthday of No. 2,
August 1911, and so does his ovulation date, August 1913,
from the presumed ovulation date for the actual birthday of
No. 2; because ovulation starts after the actual birthday,
not after the expected birth date. The case also shows
that, to predict or to determine the sex of the next child,
the actual date of birth must be used, and not the expected

date.



A CASE OF ARTIFICIAL PREMATURITY, LABOUR BEING
INDUCED.

Mrs. F. O. had her children thus:

1. Boy r born January 17, 1906. This child, a full-time
one, was born when expected, but owing to a pelvic con-
traction the doctor said induction of premature labour
would have to be performed in any subsequent pregnancy.

2. Boy, born April 5, 1908, labour having been induced
a month prematurely, the child's birth being expected
normally on or about May 5, 1908. As the boy No. i was
born January 1906, January 1908 would have given a male,
February a female, March a male, April a female, and May
1908 a male, which the child No. 2 was, though his birth
had been expedited, so that he arrived in April.

3. Girl. Her birth was expected about September 15,
1912. Labour was induced on August 25, 1912, and the
girl was born.

Now, by my theory we must reckon from the actual
birth date of No. 2 child viz. April 1908 (not from the ex-
pected month, May). As April 1908 gave a boy, April
1910 and 1912 would have given males, so May 1912 would
give a female, June a male, July a female, August a male,
and September 1912 a female, which the child was, though
her birth was brought about prematurely in August.



206 THE CAUSATION OF SEX

4. Girl. Expected on April 26, 1914; delivery was de-
layed, and she was eventually delivered by Caesarean section
on May i, 1914. As above, we reckon from the actual
birth date of No. 3 viz. August 1912 which was a girl;
so August 1913 would have given a male, August 1914 a
female, and June and April 1914 would have given the
female, which the child was, though actually artificially
delivered on May i, 1914.

Tabulated the births occurred thus

1. Boy, January 17, 1906. i ^

2. Boy, April 5, 1908.

Due May 5, 1908.

3. Girl, August 25, 1912.

Due September 15, 1912

4. Girl, May i, 1914.

Due April 26, 1914.



> J I.

]J J



The case is instructive as showing we must calculate from
the actual date of birth if we wish to forecast or to determine
the sex of a subsequent child, and not from the expected
date of birth.

It shows that ovulation evidently begins again a " month "
or period after the actual birth, whether premature or not,
and whether naturally or artificially induced. The case
is very convincing of alternate ovulation of male and female
ova, and thus very strongly supports my theory. Note
that all the actual birth dates come wrong to each other,
but that the actual birth dates all come right to the ex-
pected birth dates of the succeeding children.

That women do not all conform to the 28-day type of
menstruation and ovulation is a fact known to all, and I
have had, sinee the first edition of this book was written,
most extraordinary cases of ovulation irregularity sent to
me, and these, besides constituting the most difficult
cases to correctly determine the sex for, account for many
contradictory cases.

In the following case the type is certainly not a 28-day
type, for all the birth dates come incorrectly with each
other, save I and 3 to each other.



DIFFICULTIES AND ERRORS EXPLAINED 207

Mrs. M. L. L. had her family thus:

1. Boy, September 12, 1885.-,

2. Girl, July 16, 1887. R

3. Girl, September 15, 1890.-'

4. Girl, August 25, 1892.

5. Boy, June 21, 1896.

It is not necessary to detail others.

Finally I give two convincing cases.
Mrs. W. P. S. had her family thus:

1. Boy, December 8, 1900.

Two months premature ; ex-
pected in February 1 90 1 . ~| R r

2. Girl, December 16, 1904.

3. Girl, December 17, 1908.



4. Girl, December 9, 1910.



A strikingly confirmatory case. The last three children
were born exactly when expected. Note that each of the
four was born in a December.

Mrs. W. L/s family came thus:

1. Girl, August 3, 1885.

2. Girl, September 10, 1886.

3. Girl, September 16, 1888.

4. Girl, January 17, 1890.

5. Boy, June 15, 1894.

6. Boy, September 20, 1897.

7. Girl, September 29, 1898.

8. Girl, September 3, 1900.

Note how five of the births occurred in the month of
September !

The above is a good example of a fairly large family
with " remarkable concordance with expectation," and
thoroughly corroborates the theory. Well might one
of my reviewers write: " The theory works out with curious
exactitude in the cases tested " by him. Children i and
2 support the statement that 13-months apart children
are of the same sex; Nos. 2 and 3, 7 and 8, show that births
in the same month an even number of years apart are of
the same sex; while Nos. 6 and 7 prove that the same
month next year gives a change in sex.



CHAPTER XXV

A CONSIDERATION OF

THE PRE- AND POST- MENSTRUAL THEORY
OF SEX DETERMINATION

AMONG the fairly widely credited means of securing a boy
or girl as wished is the belief that fertilisation must take place
just before or just after a menstrual period, to secure the
sex desired the so-called " pre- and post-menstrual theory "
of sex causation.

This idea I find, like a great majority of others, has no
foundation of fact to rest on; and I am further struck with
the- self-condemnatory fact that, while one section of the
public believes that just before a period gives a boy, and
after a girl; an equally numerous section believes just the
opposite viz. that just before a period gives a girl, and
after a boy.

I have no hesitation in saying that both are entirely
wrong, and that the time of fertilisation is quite immaterial;
and I have by me a large number of clinical cases in detail
to disprove either contention.

First pointing out the difficulty of explaining by this
view those cases where pregnancy occurs before menstrua-
tion has ever begun, as in young girls in hot climates especi-
ally for the children in such cases are not of one sex only
as well as those cases of pregnancy after the cessation of
menstruation ; there are the quite numerous cases to explain
of pregnancy occurring during the lactational absence of
menstruation, where also the children are not of one sex
only, as they should be if the ovum fertilised prior to the
menstrual show always gave children of one sex only.

The following extracts from letters from patients serve
to show how worthless the idea is.

208



PRE- AND POST-MENSTRUAL THEORY 209

Mrs. P. C. R. writes: "This date [of insemination] was
just before the period" a girl was born; and "the last
girl was just after, so THAT idea is knocked on the head
and proved." Emphasised words as in original letter.

This case is most convincing, as the patient, who most
earnestly longed for a boy, had been strongly advised to
attempt fertilisation only after a period. This she did,
and obtained a girl. Being then advised by other friends
to try just before the period, and a boy would surely result,
she obtained the second girl she writes of above. So that
this one patient disproves both ideas. It shows, as I con-
tend, that a girl can be obtained by either pre- or post-
menstrual fertilisation, provided the ovum is female.

Mrs. V. B., who has had four boys and no girls, writes
thus: " I think all my babies have been started directly
after a "period."

This case necessarily disproves the idea that girls are
due to fertilisation just after the period only, though sup-
porting the idea that this leads to the birth of a boy.

Mrs. G. W., who has had three girls, writes that she has
" found that immediately after has produced my girls."

This case and the previous one remarkably contradict
each other.

Mrs. L. P. writes in her letters to me thus (the words in
italic are emphasised in the original letters) : " I am anxious
to have a son, and have already had two daughters. One
thing I do know is that both my girls v have been made the
day after my period is over. It is no use my trying directly
after ; I am sure it would be a girl, for directly after the
period has meant a daughter each time so far." After
consulting me, I wrote and advised that the time of fertilisa-
tion was immaterial, as long as the correct ovum was fer-


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Online LibraryErnest Rumley DawsonThe causation of sex in man; a new theory of sex based on clinical materials together with chapters on forecasting or predicting the sex of the unborn child and on the determination or production of either sex at will → online text (page 16 of 18)