Bertillon Measurements (Bertillon's anthropometrical system) of personal identification was divided into three integrated parts: (1) the bodily measurements that required measurements, conducted with the utmost precision and under carefully prescribed conditions , a series of the most characteristic dimensions of bony parts of the human anatomy;.

(2) the morphological description of the appearance and shape of the body and its measured parts as they related to movements "and even the most characteristic mental and moral qualities"; and (3) a description of peculiar marks observed on the "surface of the body, resulting from disease, accident, deformity or artificial disfigurement, such as moles, warts, scars, tattooings, piercing etc." It can be readily observed that Bertillon contemplated a complex process involving a threefold description of a human being, achieved by followed a cumbersome measuring procedure, before the identity of a person could be established through anthropometry. The system created by the Parisian law enforcement officer was in fact so cumbersome that two (2) different individuals measuring the same person frequently would not arrive at the same description or measurements. It is in part the difficulty of administering the system in a uniform way that led to its abandonment when fingerprint identification came upon the scene.

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