It is with considerable trepidation that I present this second volume of Hand-studies to those who have been good enough to take interest in the first book. The reason of this fear is the fact which I wish frankly to confess, that apart from the hand 1 know but little of my subject. But in all my investigations into my science, the question of health as shown in the hand has forced itself upon my notice, and upon that of my co-workers in the Cheirological Society, in a way that has made it imperative that we should lay it before our Students, and also to engage, if possible, the attention of other investigators in human physiology to what seems to be a very important part in our work on hands.
In many volumes written by our predecessors, remarks on health as shown on the lines are scattered throughout their pages, but this, I believe, is the first attempt to make a category, and to draw out a plan of the hand showing where, in our experience of thirty years of careful investigation, nature has located the different parts of the human frame. This map, together with the explanatory interpretation of the signs shown upon it, I lay before the Students of Cheirology, in the hope that although it may be, at the present moment, fragmentary and incomplete, yet as our science advances and knowledge of our subject increases, it may prove a stepping-stone to those who are at work upon it at the present time, and as an encouragement to those who are as yet but slightly interested, and to prevail upon them to notice the more serious side of hand-reading, giving to our science that proper and courteous consideration that is due to original research in what will prove to be a useful and interesting branch in the study of human nature.