b. w. betts


B. W. Betts, Geometrical Psychology, (1887)

Above are a handful of diagrams from Geometrical psychology, or, The science of representation: an abstract of the theories and diagrams of B. W. Betts (1887) by Louisa S. Cook, which details New Zealander Benjamin Bett’s remarkable attempts to mathematically model the evolution of human consciousness through geometric forms.

(from the introduction to the book)

“The symbolic forms which Mr. Betts has evolved through his system of Representation resemble, when developed in two dimensions, conventionalized but very scientifically and beautifully conventionalized leaf-outlines. When in more than two dimensions they approximate to the forms of flowers and crystals. …. The fact that he has accidentally portrayed plant-forms when he was studying human evolution is an assurance to Mr. Betts of the fitness of the symbols he has developed, as it affords presumptive evidence that the laws he is studying intuitively admit of universal application.”