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Galton is regarded as the founder of psychometry. He studied the work of his older half-cousin Charles Darwin about biological evolution. Hypothesizing that eminence is inherited from ancestors, Galton did a study of families of eminent people in Britain, publishing it in 1869 as Hereditary Genius.[8] Galton's ideas were elaborated from the work of two early 19th-century pioneers in statistics: Carl Friedrich Gauss and Adolphe Quetelet. Gauss discovered the normal distribution : given a large number of measurements of the same variable under the same conditions, they vary at random from a most frequent value, the "average", to two least frequent values at maximum differences greater and lower than the most frequent value. Quetelet discovered that the bell-shaped curve applied to social statistics gathered by the French government in the course of its normal processes on large numbers of people passing through the courts and the military. His initial work in criminology led him to observe "the greater the number of individuals observed the more do peculiarities become effaced...". This ideal from which the peculiarities were effaced became "the average man".[9]

Wikipedia contributors, "Genius," Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia,