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Alphonse Bertillon (Alphonse Bertillon)

( assistant clerk in the archives of the Paris prefecture.)

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Biography Alphonse Bertillon (Alphonse Bertillon)
(23.04.1853 - 13.02.1914)
Add a noble origin to the unhappy Bashmachkin, and you get a 26-year-old Alphonse Bertillon, an assistant clerk in the archives of the Paris prefecture. He was hopeless. The son of a respected doctor, statistics, and vice-president of the Paris Anthropological Society of Louis Adolphe Bertillon, he was able to get this unenviable position only because of family connections. On arrival at the prefecture of his time to exclude from the three best schools of France, was fired from the bank and robbed the practice tutor. Moreover Bertillon was closed and mistrustful, suffered from epistaxis and migraine.
The only well versed in what Alphonse, was a kind of "family science Bertillon - Anthropology. Then one day, with meticulous zeal to rewrite the next card, Bertillon, drew attention to the blatant superficiality of anthropological descriptions of criminals. His whole being overcome by "the great test fever. His first "session of measurements, he began to pursue: in the Sante prison. "This fellow - a real maniac. He should be locked away from sin, and not admitting to decent people: "- grumbled criminals, are reluctant to let yourself to measure small, fussy little man, uveshennomu measuring tape
. Bertillon concluded, . As for the combination of 14 units of measurement (growth, . length of the upper body, . circumference and head length, . foot length, . hands, . fingers and ears, etc.) of an adult a chance to match the theory of probability is equal to 1: 286 435 456,
. If you make a careful measurement of each offender and accurately record the results in the personal card, will be possible to unambiguously identifying. Having received from the slave vague memo, the prefect of the French criminal police Syurte could not understand the endless columns of numbers, called Bertillon and invited him not to disturb the prefecture of their ideas and harder to hold on to their place
. Not once Bertillon was able to prove the full value of his method
. He was given a period of three months, during which he was supposed to identify the criminal,. The success was possible only if one of those criminals who are "innovative" have time for this time to measure and put on a card index will be delayed, it will be blamed, it will leave the punishment, will be released, once again commits a crime and he was again arrested. And such an occasion presented itself! During the 10 days before the target date yet Bertillon identified by its card index of some hapless Parisian thieves.
On "anthropometry" drew attention. Soon Bertillon was appointed "Director of the Police Service of identification". Through his system managed to avoid thousands of miscarriages of justice and hundreds of deaths. However, in order to attract the attention of the European public, it was necessary to truly high-profile case.
March 11, 1892 an explosion shook the Boulevard Saint-Germain. Under the ruins of the house in which resided the Chief Justice Benoit, found the remains of the bomb. Customer attack was certain Shomarten, fanatic and anarchist. He was arrested, and he opened Syurte artist name. He was legendary Parisian thief, murderer and terrorist who called himself "Ravachol". He was elusive, the European press has accused Syurte of helplessness. The Prefect of Police called for assistance Bertillon. He received a card from the archive with the anthropometric data of a certain Francois Kenigshteyna once lived under the name "Ravachol", and put his description in the newspaper. Kenigshteyna about a year wanted by the police for several brutal murders and several robberies.
The next bomb exploded in a house on Rue de Clichy. They lived Attorney Bц╪low, who spoke against the anarchists. Paris panicked. The next day, "Ravachol" secretly met with journalists from "Le Gol" and advised the police to leave hope of capturing. However, it soon turned into Syurte owner of a Parisian restaurant, recognized one of the visitors rights as described in the newspapers. March 30 suspect was captured and brought to Bertillon, who immediately undertake a detailed measurement.
Bertillon compared the data obtained from the archive, with its results and confidently handed Kenigshteyna-Ravachol justice. Having ascended the scaffold, "Ravachol" shouted: "You swine - long live the revolution!"
. Now his system was called a genius, and he became a kind of national hero: He is so deeply immersed in work that absolutely stopped noticing those around him
. Subordinated hated him for mandative tone, excessive demands and rigorous.
Bertillon began to develop another area of criminology - Police Photos. At the end of XIX century, photography was purely a creative act, and police photographers worked, which was Forces. Prisoners were shot in different scales, from different points and through different lenses. Bertillon noted that to know the offender in such images is practically impossible. As a result of their own fotoopytov he came to the conclusion that each detainee should be photographed twice - full face and profile. And should withdraw from the same distance, with the same coverage and so that the head of the perpetrator was recorded in the same situation. He even developed a special swivel chair.
Now to the personal card attached convict two clear photos (this is done and to this day). But perhaps the most significant invention of the Bertillon was the prototype composite sketch - sketch of the perpetrator. With pedantry botany, collecting herbarium, he considered every human я┌п╦п©п╟п╤, classifying it in the smallest individual characteristics. Compounds dictionary, tireless Bertillon added a sketch of archival card. "Thanks to the French genius in the world will not be miscarriages of justice because of the identification. Hail bertilonazh, the greatest discovery of the XIX century "- newspapers. He enthusiastically listened to the singing of copper pipes, believing that the science of criminology has reached its highest point of the face.
Meanwhile, long been known that each person has their own individual "mark" - fingerprints. British William Herschel and Francis Galton in 1901, Mr.. began to demonstrate an advantage over fingerprinting bertilonazhem. The introduction of this very simple at first glance, the system was impossible due to the absence of the principle of classification. But in the end the Englishman Edward Henry still found a way by which Fingerprint takes a few minutes. After 10 years, the system prints began to practice throughout Europe. But not in France where he led the department identify its main enemy. And then the theft occurred century.
To emphasize the total improbability of some event, the Parisians would say: "It's like stealing the Mona Lisa: But in August 1911, she was still stolen.
Many French are perceived as an insult to the robbery of the Louvre and the nation longed for a criminal to break into pieces. All eyes turned to Bertillon, and he worked tirelessly, and forcing their employees. Even if a psychiatric clinic, as it was known that many mentally ill persons identified themselves as lovers, the Mona Lisa: Once again, climbed the crime scene, Bertillon found a single piece of evidence - a fingerprint. And the first time, regretted that for a long time hindered fingerprinting and were stored in the archive Syurte only prints made in the most recent:
. Only in December 1913, the thief found himself trying to sell the "Mona Lisa" Florentine antiquary
. He was an Italian painter Vincenzo Perrudzhia. More than two years, "Mona Lisa" was lying under a bed in a closet, just a few kilometers from the Louvre: To my great shame Bertillon, they found that Perrudzhia repeatedly arrested and just his fingerprints already stored in the archive. Robbery century could open a few hours:
Since then France has begun the transition from the famous "bertilonazha" to fingerprinting. However, the police chief Lepen learned that Alphonse Bertillon terminally ill, decided to postpone the reorganization until his death
A few days before his death to Bertillon came last echo of a great past. Twenty years ago the French government promised Bertillon red ribbon Legion of Honor, which he never received, do not want to admit their mistake made by him in 1894. Then he was involved in the famous Dreyfus case (on a false accusation of the French army Captain Dreyfus was declared a German spy and sent to Devil's Island): Bertillon acted as an expert and, . not noticing the falsification of the results of expert handwriting analysis, . provoked a judicial error,
Now, at the deathbed Bertillon appeared Envoy of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and gently invited him to the Order in exchange for formal recognition of their mistakes. Bertillon evil shouted: "No!" A few days later, on Feb. 13, 1914, he was completely blind, and died.
Immediately after the death of Alphonse Bertillon in France introduced a new system of identification - fingerprinting. "Bertilonazh" now exists only in textbooks on the history of the world of criminology. Others invention Bertillon live now, though, apart from its name:

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