Frederic William Henry Myers.

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nothing was injured except a particular table in a particular spot. Next day
they heard that this particular table, and this alone, had been injured.

[Miss Buller corroborates and expands this statement as follows:

36 GREEN STREET, PARK LANE, W., April 26tk, 1893.

The following incident happened when I was staying at Greystoke more
than a dozen years ago [discrepancy as to date], but I have often told the
story since, and to the best of my recollection the facts were these :

On being asked what damage our tenants had done, Lady Mabel Howard's
pencil replied : " They have broken the table and a chair," and added,
" the table has been mended." On reaching our house and asking the same
question of our housemaid, she replied that a table in the drawing-room (the
only one of its kind) had been broken, but had been mended, and one of the
kitchen chairs had been broken. Nothing else in the way of furniture had
been injured. HENRIETTA J. BULLER.]

5. Shortly afterwards I went for some winter months to St. Moritz. For
some reason or other the answers were particularly good there. One day a
lady living in quite a different part of the huge hotel, and on the fourth floor,
while we were on the first floor, missed a valuable object which she had
bought as a prize for tobogganing. I knew nothing of the circumstances, but
my hand wrote that the object had been taken by a light-haired young waiter
called Richard. I knew of no such waiter, as he had nothing to do with our
part of the hotel. But on mentioning this answer to the lady in question she
said that there was in fact a young light-haired waiter called Richard who
waited on her floor; and that she had suspected him. My hand had written
where the object was hidden; but the lady would not have search made.

6. A Mr. Huth, who was staying at our hotel, was leaving the next day for
Paris, and had arranged to dine the day after with a friend, a young doctor
attached to the Embassy in Paris, from whom he had just received an invita-
tion. He asked me to predict something about his journey. My hand wrote
words to this effect: "You will have an accident on your journey; and you
will not see your friend, and you cannot see him." He derided this, as the
arrangement with the friend had just been made. As he went to Chur next
day by sleigh his sleigh was overturned, and his journey was thus delayed for
a day. When he got to Paris he found that his friend was dead.

[Mr. Huth independently corroborates and adds to this account as
follows :


In March 1889 I was staying at St. Moritz (Engadine), where I met with
a very serious accident tobogganing. Although still crippled, I decided to
return home, and on the morning of my departure the weather was brilliantly
fine. I asked Lady Mabel Howard's pencil, more in joke than anything else,


what sort of a journey I should have. The pencil promptly replied that I
should have an awful journey and meet with an accident. I then asked
whether I should meet and dine with any friend in Paris. I asked this
question because I had arranged to dine with a friend of mine, a Dr. Davies,
who was living there, to talk over some theatricals he was to get up at the
British Embassy. The pencil at once replied that I should neither meet nor
dine with any one I knew. Knowing of my arrangement and incredulous as
to this reply, I repeated my question, with the same result. I then asked
what day I should get back to England, having decided in my own mind to
return on the Friday. The pencil at once answered " On Thursday."

On the summit of the JulSer Pass the weather suddenly changed from
bright sunshine to a perfect hurricane of wind, snow, and sleet, which com-
pletely blinded us, and the snow was so thick we could not see ten yards in
front of us. Our driver missed the track, the sleigh upset, and we were all
thrown out on to the snow, and it was three hours before we were in compara-
tive safety. On my arrival in Paris I found no word from my friend Dr.
Davies, and on inquiry at his rooms I learnt that he had died from typhoid
fever ten days previously. I neither dined with nor met any one I knew whilst
in Paris, and I returned to England a day sooner than I had intended in con-
sequence of my friend's death, and it was only upon my arrival in London that
I remembered it was Thursday, the day foretold by the pencil.


7. In 1888 another girl friend of mine asked when she was to be engaged
to be married. My hand wrote: "In March 1890." She became engaged in
that month to a man of whom there had been no idea at the time. [The lady
in question, Mrs. Lawson, writing from Greystoke Castle, February 1893, con-
firms and enlarges this statement as follows : " I was at Greystoke in February
1888, and Lady Mabel Howard was writing with her pencil, which said that I
should be engaged to be married in March 1890, and it also said that I should
not be married until the following year. I was engaged to be married on
March 27th, 1890, and it was all settled that I should be married within six
weeks ; but most unforeseen circumstances arose, and my marriage did not
take place until April 1891. CAMILLA LAWSON."]

8. I have never tried experiments in thought-transference, such as those
recorded in the S.P.R. Proceedings. But I have no doubt that words and
ideas do pass without speech from my husband's mind into mine. I have
specially remarked this a propos of bye-elections, when I feel certain that I
have never consciously known the names of the candidates. Many times my
hand has written those names (when known to him) truly, and sometimes it has
predicted results of elections with an accuracy which seemed to both of us not
to be the result of chance. In one case, where a gentleman named Nanney
was standing, of whom I was quite sure that I had never heard, my hand kept
writing " Goat, Goat." In this case my husband was not present, but some one
else who was present knew the name.


" Correct, as far as I am concerned. HENRY HOWARD."

[These last instances must, according to our canons of evidence, be reckoned
merely as revivals of subliminal memory. Names which have been printed in
newspapers which have been lying about must be taken as having possibly

43 8 APPENDICES [851 A

fallen within the field of at least unconscious vision. The emergence of an
unconsciously observed name Nanney in the grotesque form Goat would thus
be parallel to the emergence of the unconsciously observed word Bouillon in
the grotesque form Verbascum Thapsus, mentioned in Proceedings, vol. viii.

P- 4S5-]

Writing later, from P Park, April i8th, 1893, Lady Mabel adds :

9. The H. girls asked what entertainment they should go to directly on
arriving in London. The pencil answered, " Lady C." This puzzled us all, as no
one knew of an entertainment to be given next week. At last, as it continued
writing " Lady C.," we gave it up, thinking it must mean dining at home, Lady
C. meaning [their mother]. That very evening, eight hours after, a letter
arrived from [Lady W. G.] saying Lady Carrington wished to know if the H.'s
could dance the minuet at her house on the 27th. They will arrive in London
on the 25th. [From a later letter it appears that the Ladies H. knew that this
engagement impended, but believed that it would be much later in the season,
"and were much surprised themselves at receiving the letter."]

10. I have myself [F. W.H.M.] succeeded in getting two correct answers to
questions absolutely beyond Lady Mabel's knowledge. From Thornes House
I was asked to luncheon at the house of a gentleman whom I knew only by
correspondence, and of whose home and entourage the rest of the party knew
absolutely nothing. On my return I asked, " How many people sat down to
luncheon?" The answer was " Six," which was right. "What was the name
of the gentleman, not my host, with whom I sat and talked after luncheon ? "
The pencil wrote MO, and then began to scrawl. The name was Moultrie.
It was impossible that Lady Mabel should have had any kind of notion that
a gentleman of that name would have been present in a group of which she
knew nothing whatever. But here the impulse to write seemed spent, and
a few further questions were answered by erroneous words or mere scrawls.

11. The following statement, dated Downes, Crediton, Devonshire, April
8th, 1893, is signed by Sir Redvers Buller, K.C.B., and by Miss Dorothy
Howard (daughter of Lady Audrey Buller) :

" Lady Mabel Howard was stopping with us this week. She was writing with
her pencil just after arriving. Some one asked : ' Where is Don ? ' The pencil
immediately answered, ' He is dead.' Lady Mabel then asked who Don was,
and was told that he was a dog. No one in the room knew that he was dead ;
but on inquiry the next day, it was found that it was so. One of the party then
asked how many fish would be caught in the river the next day. The pencil
at once wrote three, which was the number obtained the next day.

" A little girl in the house, who attends a school in London, asked who
was her greatest friend at this school. The pencil answered Mary, which
was again a fact absolutely unknown to Lady Mabel.


The following is another case which I quote from the Proceedings
S.P.R., vol. xi. p. 395. Lady Vane writes :


About a month ago I lost a book, a manuscript one, relating to this house.
I thought I had left it in my writing-table in my sitting-room, and intended
to add a note about some alterations just completed but next day the book


had vanished. I looked through every drawer and cupboard in my room and
then asked Sir Henry to do the same, which he did twice. I also made the
head housemaid turn everything out of them and helped her to do so so that
four thorough searches were made ; but in vain. We also looked in the gallery
and library (the only other rooms to which the book had been taken) and could
not find it. On March 28th I asked Lady Mabel Howard to write about it.
She wrote, " It is in the locked cupboard in the bookcase hidden behind
the books."

I said, ; ' Then it must be in the library, because the bookcases are locked,"
and Lady Mabel wrote, " Not in the library." I said, " Then it must be in
the ante-room in the cupboard," and asked if / should find it. Lady Mabel
wrote, " No, send Sir Henry." I asked, " Will he find it ? " and she wrote,
" Of course."

Still thinking it could only be the ante-room or the library on account of
the locked cupboard and bookcase, I asked, " Which end of the room ? "

Lady Mabel wrote, " The tapestry end." I asked, " Is it on the window
side of the room or on the other ? " and she wrote, " The other." A friend
staying in the house looked in the bookcases in the library at the tapestry end,
and in the cupboard in the ante-room (I had met with an accident and could
not go myself) and could not find the book, so we gave it up.

On April 5th Sir Henry was in my sitting-room and suddenly said, " I have
an idea ! Lady Mabel meant this room. There is the bookcase and the locked
cupboard in it and the wall outside the door is covered with tapestry." I
said, "You have looked in that cupboard twice, and so have I and the house-
maid, and the book is not there but look again if you like." Sir Henry un-
locked 'the door of the cupboard and took out all the books (there were not
more than half-a-dozen) and put them on the floor. The last he put back into
the cupboard was a scrap-book for newspaper cuttings, and as it was rather
dark at 6.30 P.M. he could not see the name on the back and therefore opened
it to see what it was, and the lost manuscript book fell out.

Having searched this very small cupboard four times previously, either of us
would have been ready to swear that this book was not in it.


Writing to me about this case on April loth, from Greystoke Castle,
Penrith, Lady Mabel Howard says :

The day I got your letter I got a special letter sent over from Hutton to say
my pencil had found a valuable book that Lady Vane had lost. We therefore
walked over there on Sunday and I asked her to write it out. It is so very
curious, quite the best thing I think the pencil ever has done as it said, " in
the cupboard in the bookcase," and they couldn't think where it meant a
cupboard in a bookcase and this little cupboard is a cupboard in the middle
let into glass bookcases on either side. I had no idea of the cupboards or
tapestries there, and the pencil wrote all this in the sandwich paper at luncheon
on the Point-to-Point racecourse.

So curious, too, the pencil said, " Send Sir Henry," twice. It was the
merest chance finding it, as it fell out of this scrap-book, and was hidden
behind the other books.


In another letter, dated April i4th, Lady Mabel Howard writes :

I saw Lady Vane on February 24th, when the book had not been lost. I
did not see her again till Easter Monday. The moment I got upstairs she
exclaimed, "I want you to find a book for me that is lost." No pencil nor
paper was forthcoming, so she said, " Never mind, write when you get
home," but I forgot, and it was two days after at the Point- to-Point race
that she asked me again, and we wrote it in the paper the sandwiches had
been in.

I was abroad all this March and it was then that there were repairs being
done in the house, and Lady Vane took the book down from where she kept
it (I don't know where) and having entered the repairs into it, put it down,
and from that moment it was never seen again. I must have been at Florence
when the book was lost. MABEL HOWARD.

Are we to describe this as a knowledge of past, of present, or of
future ? Or may we say that a telaesthetic perception of this kind is not
strictly conditioned by time, but includes some retrogressive knowledge
as to how things reached their present condition, and also some pre-
gressive inference as to their coming development? The element of
forecast in the present case, the indication that it would be Sir
Henry Vane who would find the book, is in itself very slight; but it
cannot be ignored when we compare other messages of Lady Mabel
Howard's. See, for instance, the messages to Mr. Huth, where the
element of precognition was strongly marked. In this present case, the
whereabouts of the book can hardly have been supraliminally known to
any human being ; since the workman or servant whose hands may have
slipped it into the larger book was probably unaware of what it was,
or even of his own unthinking action itself. If, however, it were Sir
Henry or Lady Vane who unthinkingly placed the small book in the
larger one and this does not seem quite impossible Lady Mabel's
knowledge might have been drawn telepathically from their subliminal

852 A. From the Journal S.P.R., vol. ix. pp. 15-16.

The following incident seems to have been carefully watched and
recorded, and was published, with names of guarantors, immediately
after the event. It is extracted from a pamphlet, entitled Spiritualisme :
Faits Curifux, par Paul Auguez (Dentu, Paris, 1858) :

On December loth, 1857, we addressed the following letter to M. Morin,
vice-president of the Societe" du Mesme'risme, asking him to keep the letter
sealed until the complete fulfilment of the sad event of which we related the
prediction. The said prediction was as clearly expressed as it was wonderful
in the extraordinary method of production. We retained a copy of this letter
word for word. The original, stamped with the postmark, has been returned
to us, after the verification of its date and contents, under the following cir-
cumstances :


PARIS, December ioM, 1857.

" SIR, About a year ago, after a fruitless experiment in hydromancy, 1 a
young lady, who was with us making these experiments, suddenly saw a very
strange scene reflected on the polished surface of a glass into which she had
been looking a few minutes before. . . .

" She saw, she said, a room containing two beds. In one of these she saw
quite distinctly a sick person, whose distorted features betokened the approach
of death.

" Around this bed were standing several people, amongst whom she could
distinguish a young woman and two children, all three dressed in black.

" Being much astonished at this vision, and not knowing with what to
connect it, we asked the experimenter if these persons were known to her.
She replied at once that the dying man seemed to her to be a friend of ours,
M. X., an employe in a government office, and that the three persons dressed
in black must be his wife and his two sons.

" Although this appeared very strange, we did not attach much importance
to the matter, for M. X. had a strong constitution, and at that time was in
good health.

" However, about three months ago that is to say, about nine months after
the vision of which we have given an account M. X. was suddenly attacked
by acute bronchitis and congestion of the lungs ; but although his illness was
pronounced by the doctor to be rather serious, it did not cause any great

" Then the fatal prediction came into our minds, and we were very anxious
about the condition of our friend, which became more and more distressing.

" A few weeks ago the disease assumed a more serious character, and as
the arrangement of the apartments in which he was living made it impossible
to nurse him efficiently, he determined to take advantage of the privilege
attached to his position as government official, and was moved to Val-de-

" At the time of writing this letter, the invalid, finding himself somewhat
better, has just been taken to the house of a relation, where he hopes to stay
during his convalescence.

" At the same time, the disease has not diminished in severity, although it
is stationary. This is how matters stand to-day, December loth, 1857.

" As far as we are concerned, however, the prediction is in some measure
fulfilled. Indeed, who would ever have thought that a young man, in full
strength, would, in such a short time, be in such a state as he is to-day? Who
would have supposed that any one who lived in such comfortable circumstances
as our unfortunate friend would be obliged by the force of circumstances to
have himself taken to a hospital ? Who could have foreseen that his family,
who had been seen dressed in black, should happen just at that time to be in
mourning for a relation who had died a short time previously ?

" We must add further that since M. X. was moved to the house of his re-
lation, after attempts to obtain communications by means of a table, for several
evenings, a message, giving the name of M. X., appeared spontaneously.
Among other things said, in reply to questions asked, were the words :
' Death warning ! . . .'

1 Divination by means of pictures, which are delineated in the water before the eyes
of the seer [i.e. a species of crystal-gazing].



" We heard later on that at the time when these manifestations occurred,
M. X. was lying in a state of lethargic stupor, in consequence of the doses of
opium given him to induce sleep."

M. X. died a month after this letter was sent. It was read by us in the
presence of MM. le Baron du Potet, Petit d'Ormoy, and Morin, who, after
having considered all the circumstances, and having verified the date of the
postmark, December nth, certified that the details therein contained were
absolutely accurate.

852 B. The following are extracts from a translation * of a paper
on "Telepathic Perceptions by Means of Automatic Writing," by
M. Bonatti, which appeared in the Rivista di Studi Psichici, July 1895.

I began to write automatically with the hand of a medium resting on mine,
but soon I was able to write alone. The communications were at first of a
spiritualistic character, and the writing was a fair imitation of that of the
defunct who appeared to be present, and whom I had known in life. However,
I was acquainted with their writing. I was generally advised to work and
study much ; my counsellor was interested in my moral life, and was a more
attentive friend than any I have found in flesh and blood. Soon after I was
obsessed by a lying and frivolous, but not wicked, personality, who displayed a
great passion for art. This personality was only useful to me on that point,
giving me advice, and, by means of automatic drawing, greatly developing my
memory of drawing and powers of conception. I did not write for several
months, in order to free myself of this obsession. Meanwhile I enlarged my
knowledge of psychical matters; and when I began to write again I succeeded
in convincing the communicating personality that it might be an emanation
from my own subconscious self. After this it called itself my Secondo.

I examined this Secondo to see if it possessed any supernormal powers, and
discovered some. It continued to give me useful advice, and strengthened my
love of art.

When I write automatically I do not know what the communication will be ;
sometimes I guess after a few words, but I often guess wrongly, and write
something altogether unlike my guess.

I enjoy perfectly good health, and am able to endure constant outdoor
exercise without fatigue. As far as I know, I am psychically normal. I retain
all my normal faculties when writing automatically.

The following are cases of telepathy from persons sleeping or dreaming
at a greater or less distance, their impressions being revealed to me by
automatic writing. The first of these cases was a great surprise to me, as I had
never heard of similar ones. Up to February i7th, 1893, I have had very few
failures, and these took place when I eagerly desired the phenomenon ; whilst
the successes happened spontaneously. Every time that I tried to receive a
telepathic communication, it was false. The following are cases of the com-
munication of dreams, and it must not be forgotten that dreams are sometimes
not remembered at all, and often remembered only in part.

October &,th, 1892, n P.M. I wrote automatically, "Go Ang

Goodbye." "The man who has been my murderer will not farewell." The
next day "Go Ang "told me that during the past night she had

1 The greater part of this translation appeared in full in the Proceedings S.P.R.,
vol. xi. pp. 477-481.


dreamt of me and of a man who had, in truth, been for her a very murderer.

In her dream she intended to revenge herself on him. Ang Go lived

about three kilometres from where I was writing.

October 8M, 9.30 P.M. I wrote, " Hugo, I am speaking with you." And
then a dream not worth reporting. " I also am speaking I am Guido. I am

speaking with my grandmother." And then another dream. " Go Ang ,

I am speaking to G . I am telling him that I wish him to pay me ; but I

don't ask for money, but for clothes."

Hugo and Guido are my two nephews, who live in a village five kilometres
from me. The first is ten and the other twelve years old. When asked the
next day, with the greatest care not to suggest anything to them, of what they
had dreamt the previous night, the first answered that he had dreamt that
people were trying to kill me, and that he remembered nothing else ; the other
told me that he had dreamt of me, but remembered nothing more of his dream.
Both had gone to bed at 8.15.

Go Ang , when questioned with great caution, told me that on the

night of the 8th she had dreamt of G . She remembered quite well that he

was talking to her about a new suit of his which was barely begun, but did not
remember if she had been paid by him.

On the same evening on which I had written down the dreams of my two
nephews, I made automatically a very childish drawing, and in a moment per-
ceived that it represented them and their brothers, who were in the country.
But I observed that one of them was missing, because there are four of them,
and in my drawing there were only three. I did not know the reason of this.
The next morning I had an explanation, discovering in my house, where he had
passed the night, that very nephew who was missing in my picture. He had
come up on the evening of the 8th, a few hours before I received the telepathic
message, and after I had gone from my house to my studio, where I am accus-
tomed to pass the evening. His arrival had not been pre-arranged, and I
could not have seen him arrive, even unconsciously, as the street I went
through to go to my studio was in a totally different direction from the street

Online LibraryFrederic William Henry MyersHuman personality : and its survival of bodily death (Volume 2) → online text (page 59 of 89)