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The Stages Of Hypnotism

Lethargy--Catalepsy--The Somnambulistic Stage--Fascination.

We have just given some of the amusing experiments that may be performed

with subjects in one of the minor stages of hypnotism. But there are

other stages which give entirely different manifestations. For a

scientific classification of these we are indebted to Professor Charcot,

of the Salpetriere hospital in Paris, to whom, next to Mesmer and Braid,

we are indebted for the present science of hypnotism. He recognized

three distinct stages--lethargy, catalepsy and somnambulism. There is

also a condition of extreme lethargy, a sort of trance state, that lasts

for days and even weeks, and, indeed, has been known to last for years.

There is also a lighter phase than somnambulism, that is called

fascination. Some doctors, however, place it between catalepsy and

somnambulism. Each of these stages is marked by quite distinct

phenomena. We give them as described by a pupil of Dr. Charcot.