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Author: Ildiko Hanko and Maria Latza


This book is worth more than its price value. The author has given in few words, what, could have been narrated in tens of volumes. The material is lavishly illustrated with original color pictures. Picture credit is to co-author Marta Latza. There are, altogether, some 112 images of human types and races from all over the world - that is, incredible achievement for such tiny format.

Otherwise, the methodological merits of the book are poor. The humble knowledge of the reviewer could not permit a systematic exposition on such an enormous and important topic. Nevertheless, we should try to give some basic points in the evolution of the race theory:

1. classical period and establishment of the race doctrine, a. end of the 19th century  ~ A. Gobineau, H. S. Chamberlain, etc.

2. modern period and apogee of racist literature, a. first half of the 20th century ~ C. Coon, M. F. A. Montagu, etc.

3. postwar period and banishment of the racial theme, a. second half of the 20th century ~ the editors of UNESCO, etc.

4. revival period and emphasis on molecular aspects of race, in 80s and 90s of the 20th century - furthermore, continuing today ~ L. L. Cavalli-Sforza, S. Molnar, etc.


Figure 1 & 2: Sample illustrative material from the book.

(i). Proposed scheme for intermingling of the two major human types with resultant many human races. Accordingly, it is evident that all major human races could intermingle among each other and beget fruitful generation. This is corroborated by many studies from the fields of population biology and physical anthropology. The psychological dimension of the problem is not commented in this book.


(ii). This is picture of a Basque man from the Bay of Biscay, Northern Spain. The Basques are indigenous population with ancient traditions and they trace their origin from times of mythology.




Supplement - Origin of Races: This book has posed several problems during a period of its review, which, I shall try to reveal in systematical manner. Now, let us mention momentarily that the question of races /i.e., or of sub-species/ has been as much important for the 20th c. - namely, it has the same weight as Darwinism and the origin of the species. Further, while many human races had been wiped out in the past century and the future of a single and unified human species is still unclear. This is a point of fact, in passim.

Secondly, the question at hand has been poorly researched in Bulgaria and remained so at the brink of 21st century. Principal investigators on the topic are scanty and one of them is Prof. Yordan Yordanov - who, has written an introduction to this small book. We have tried in our supplement to reproduce in succinct way the contents of this introduction in English. Being not in a position to discuss more and we should mention that Prof. Y. Yordanov is himself a major authority on head reconstructions from skull measurements.

Thirdly, I wish to share with an interested reader a rare phenomenon. The book at hand, which, is written by Hungarian specialists /i.e., whom I have never met or found any additional information/ - namely, this book is a rare compilation. In the process of our research and we have established that most of the reproductions in the book are a digital restoration from pictures contained in the archive of Carleton Coon. I am not going to comment on the latter, since, there is enough literature on him in any good reference library. My point of amazement here is how masterful a good shrink restoration could achieve. Everybody can do it with a piece of software and it is not a matter of copyright.

Lastly, the supplement presented bellow was written previously for another purposes. I think it could fit here, as well. I apologize in advance if some of the terminology and nomenclature are not very correct.

Supplement - Bulgarian Racial Type: Modern Bulgarian population includes all anthropological types characteristic of people lived and spread over Bulgarian lands from deep antiquity as from Neolithic times through middle ages to modern days. Socio-economic and political development, historical fate, natural-geographical factors on the Balkan peninsula and biological differentiation are connected with formation of contemporary Bulgarian racial type.

The Mediterranean racial type accounts for the greatest part of modern Bulgarian. Its individuals have the following main features: light to dark, even brown skin of the face with strongly developed beard and moustache in men. The hair on head is dark brown to black with straight to slightly wavy form. The eyelids are wide open, iris is dark colored. Facial outline is fine, projects rather strongly but cheekbones are not prominent. The nose is fairly narrow with low bridge. The lips are slightly developed, medium thick. The body is gracile, agile but with smaller trunk compared to Nordic or Dinaric racial types. The height is short to middle. The head is dolichocephalous to mesocephalous with a rounded, convex occiput. Within Bulgarian population Mediterranean race is distributed in its classical form - i.e. pure types, as well as mixed varieties. The proper type distinguishes three forms - protomediterranean, gracile and medium. These anthropological types are characteristic of the Thracian ethnos with contributing role of the Protobulgarians coming from their homeland in Altai. Today Mediterranean race can be found in every part of the country.

The Dinaric racial type can be described with a tall, slim body having long extremities. Face has elongated chin and a narrow breadth mandible. With the face as a referent there is a nose with huge dimensions regarding length of the spine and height of the bridge. Pigmentation of the skin varies - from dark tones to light yellowish. The head is brachycephalous. Representatives of Dinaric race can be found predominantly in the mountainous regions of the country. They have autochthonic, Balkan origin. There are also varieties of the type concerning admixtures from Mediterranean or Nordic races.

The representatives of the Nordic race in Bulgarian population are characterized with tall stature, long head, light blue eyes, blond undulating hair, elongated face with slight cheekbones, strongly developed straight nose line. The chin is well formed and protruded. Skin is white to pinkish with considerable density of body hair in man. Often together with the Nordic proper race there are encountered the representatives of the Baltic racial type. The latter has also very light skin but the face is broad with relatively prominent cheekbones. The nose has concave profile, pointed upwards - so called snub nose. The head is moderately brachycephalous. Height is middle, body is stout. Nordic and/or Baltic races on the Balkan Peninsula resulted from the migration of Slavs and a smaller part - attribute of Protobulgarians. These are the most populous racial element in the formation of Bulgarian nation and are dispersed on the territory of the country.

Considerably rare are representatives of the Alpine racial type. Body is fat, height is middle, extremities are short. The head is definitely brachycephalous. Face is broad, rounded with prominent cheekbones. Chin is rounded, fairly developed. Hair is straight with brown to light-brown color. Eyes are brown to mixed. Nose is not big but rather broad at the base with low bridge. Alpine anthropological type has also autochthonic origin and is dispersed in the country.

The Bulgarian population has also admixture of other racial types different from Europeoid, mainly, people with Mongoloid traits. They are characterized with broad, flat face with projecting cheekbones and an epicantus with well developed fold on the upper eyelid. A significant percentage of this racial type is found in Northeastern and Northwestern Bulgaria.

Finally a statement can be made concerning the described racial types in the country that its population is of Europeoid race with slight Mongoloid admixture.

Supplement - Cultural Racism: Our survey on national bulgarian literature /i.e., both original and translated/, unequivocally, couldn't find anything more contemporary or advanced in terms of the science of human races. The strict biologization of this branch in humanities and application of micro-molecular standards in research and development - namely, these have catapulted racial anthropology more in the domain of genetics with human genome project, rather than dwelling on an contemplative basis about some mythological roots of "Aryanism" and "Semitism".

We got the challenge, altogether, it is not far away from the mentality and traits of any living human creature on planet Earth. The search for ancestral or racial roots for the Bulgarian nation have been burgeoning for more than 150 years in the modern history of civilizations. While it is difficult to make a fuller review at the moment and we are prone to delineate some basic constituting points in the line of these thoughts. Bulgarians are proud people and have remained so during centuries of co-existence with other people and nations. Traces of the bulgarian race could be found from the Balkans and well into the islands of Japan. Various hypothetical origins have been developed from bulgarian authors and among the earliest are those from medical doctors Petar Beron and Ivan Seliminsky - namely, both were established authorities in their times /i.e., the midst XIXth. century/ and did a lot for the Revival Period of this country. We have presented some materials on them, however, much remains to be reviewed and exploited in terms of research and compilation. I say this, because, as mentioned before these bulgarians lived and worked in a surrounding, when other bulgarians under a turkish yoke could hardly think of something else beyond their mere existence.

Further, literary heritage from P. Beron and I. Seliminsky is written in French and Greek, accordingly, these were the countries of their temporary residence while abroad. More on the principle lines in their theoretical works could sound like a blunder and we are willing to admit here - viz., i./ Beron is proponent for the heliocentric theory of origin and the early coming of bulgarians with all other slav tribes from Central and South-East Asia. This is the "Semitic" line in research; ii./ Seliminsky stands for other routes of beginning and traces them as far as Pamir and Hindu-Kush with the culture of swastika bearers. This is the line of "Aryan" origin for the bulgarians. Well until the middle of the XXth. century and more speculations on racial origins were hypothesized from bulgarian authors - namely, we shall only point out two of them /i.e.,  authors D. Suselov and N. Stanishev/, however, other titles are also interesting from cultural and historical point of view.

As a matter of fact, a whole line in philosophy have been trying to delimit racial boundaries for this or that racial type in the course of thousands of years of human development. A hypothetical time-traveler should wonder on which is the leading trace on Earth and what are future perspectives for mixed cohabitation. Worse than that and answers are only superfluous as it comes to dominance of one major race over another. While humans are part from nature on this planet and it is possible to describe and classify races, but not to annihilate and destroy them. As a strict Malthusian proposition and we are going to offer our classificatory scheme for the human races - namely, in terms of decreasing "odds" propensity: 1. White; 2. Negro; 3. Ameroindian; 4. Hindu; 5. Chinese. No more comments on this item.


Addendum: We are not prone to discuss racial matters and anymore than they are already developed in the existing literature. Our search in the WWW have led us to an interesting debate from the 1950s and appearing in a consecutive issues of UNESCO publications. The interested reader can have a look on the material at hand and make his own valid conclusions.

Here are the links:



Copyright 2004, 2006 by the author.