Re: Nostrils: a definition

Ralph L Holloway (
Sun, 23 Jul 1995 19:13:50 -0400

On Sun, 23 Jul 1995, Elaine Morgan wrote:

> This trajectory also involves an awkward detour- the air has to go up,
> and over the top, and down. I believe I quoted this as one of the
> "scars"of evolution, an unwanted consequence of the aquatic phase.

Elaine, I really don't believe this is any kind of scar. The air that gets
into our lungs isn't sucked into them, it falls into the lungs, and there
are no obstacles confronting out breathing as such a curve implies.
Besides, it is your diaphragm that is doing most of this 'work', which
allows gravity to "force" air down into our lungs, as it were.
Why, incidentally, do so many swimmers wear nose-clips if they
retain caudally-directed nostrils as a "scar" from an aquatic past?
Ralph Holloway