Moreover, most people in whom the imagination is quite vigorously at work know nothing about it. Du Bois-Reymond says somewhere, ``I've had a few good ideas in my life, and have observed myself when I had them. They came altogether involuntarily, without my ever having thought of them.'' This I do not believe. His imagination, which was so creative, worked so easily and without
effort that he was not aware of its activity, and moreover, his fundamental ideas were so clear that everything fell into lines spontaneously without his being conscious of it later. This ``working'' of the imagination is so effortless to fortunate natures that it becomes an ordinary movement. Thus Goethe tells of an imaginary flower which broke into its elements, united again, broke again, and united in another form, etc. His story reveals one of the reasons for the false descriptions of perception. The perception is correct when made, then the imagination causes movements of ideas and the question follows which of the two was more vigorous, the perceptive or the imaginal activity? If the one was intenser, memory was correct; if the other, the recollection was erroneous. It is hence important, from the point of view of the lawyer, to study the nature and intensity of witnesses' imagination. We need only to observe the influence of imaginal movements on powerful minds in order to see clearly what influence even their weak reflection may have on ordinary people. Schopenhauer finds the chief pleasure of every work of art in imagination; and Goethe finds that no man experiences or enjoys anything without becoming productive.
Most instructive is the compilation of imaginative ideas given by H
A physician, Dr. Hadekamp, said that he used to see the flow of blood before he cut the vein open. Another physician, Dr. Schmeisser, confirms this experience. Such cases are controlled physically, the flow of blood can not be seen before the knife is removed. Yet how often, at least chronologically, do similar mistakes occur when no such control is present? There is the story of a woman who could describe so accurately symptoms which resulted from a swallowed needle, that the physicians were deceived and undertook
 Cf. Witasek: Zeitschrift f. Psychologie. Vol. XII. ``
 Psychologie. Wien u. Prag. 1897.
operations which only served to show that the woman had merely imagined it all. A similar case is that of a man who believed himself to have swallowed his false teeth. He even had serious feelings of choking which immediately disappeared on the discovery of the teeth under his night-table. A prominent oculist told me that he had once treated for some time a famous scholar because the latter so accurately described a weakening of the retina that the physician, in spite of his objective discoveries, was deceived and learned his mistake only when it appeared that the great scholar fortunately had been made game of by his own imagination. Maudsley tells how Baron von Swieten once saw burst a rotten corpse of a dog, and, for years after, saw the same thing whenever he came to the same place. Many people, Goethe, Newton, Shelley, William Black, and others, were able completely to visualize past images. Fechner tells of a man who claimed voluntarily to excite anywhere on his skin the feeling of pressure, heat, and cold, but not of cut, prick or bruise, because such imaginations tended to endure a long time. There is the story of another man who had a three days' pain in his finger because he had seen his child crush an analogous finger.
Abercrombie tells of an otherwise very excitable person who believed in the reality of the luck that a fortune-teller had predicted for him, and some authorities hold that practically everybody who eagerly awaits a friend hears his step in every sound. Hoppe's observation that pruritus vulv
Taine describes the splendid scene in which Balzac once told Mad. de Girardin that he intended to give Sandeau a horse. He did not do so, but talked so much about it that he used to ask Sandeau how the horse was. Taine comments that it is clear that the starting point of such an illusion is a voluntary fiction. The person
in question knows it as such in the beginning but forgets it at the end. Such false memories are numerous among barbarous peoples and among raw, untrained, and childish minds. They see a simple fact; the more they think of it the more they see in it; they magnify and decorate it with environing circumstances, and finally, unite all the details into a whole in memory. Then they are unable to distinguish what is true from what is not. Most legends develop in this way. A peasant assured Taine that he saw his sister's soul on the day she died,--though it was really the light of a brandy bottle in the sunset.