argued that this absence in women, of genius or even of a high degree of talent, is no proof of the inferiority of the average woman to the average man the answer is obvious.
Apart from conclusive proof, the fact of the existence in all periods of civilisation, and even under the higher barbarism, of exceptionally gifted men, and never of a correspondingly gifted woman, does undoubtedly afford an indication of inferiority of the average woman as regards the average man. From the height of the mountain peaks we may, other things equal, undoubtedly conclude the existence of a tableland beneath them in the same tract of country whence they arise. I have already, in the present chapter, besides elsewhere, referred to the fallacy that intellectual or other fundamental inferiority in woman existing at the present day is traceable to any alleged repression in the past, since (Weissmann and his denial of transmission of acquired characteristics apart), assuming for the sake of the argument such repression to have really attained the extent alleged, and its effects to have been transmitted to future generations, it is against all the laws of heredity that such transmission should have taken place through the female line alone, as is contended by the advocates of this theory. Referring to this point, Herbert Spencer has expressed the conviction of most scientific thinkers on the subject when he declares a difference