Science: Brainy People

Anthropologist Aleś Hrdlička of the Smithsonian Institution tirelessly measures human skulls both quick and dead.

He looks for the significance of 1) cranial changes in human evolution. 2) cranial differences among men today. The significance is harder to detect than the differences. Eskimos have bigger heads than white men but are little if any brighter. The three largest skulls on record belong to an Aleutian Islander (capacity: 2,005 c.c.), an Algonquin "contemporary" of Pocahontas (2,200 c.c.), Russian Novelist Ivan Turgenev (2,030 c.c.). Recently Dr. Hrdlička examined the heads of 150 members of the National Academy of Sciences, which the Smithsonian calls "one...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!