Was a Scottish lawyer and the leader of the phrenological movement for more than twenty years. He founded the Edinburgh Phrenological Society in 1820 and was the author of the highly influential The Constitution of Man (1828). In his later years, after a successful marriage in 1833, Combe devoted himself to international travel in the promotion of phrenology. Through his lectures and writings, Combe attracted public attention to phrenology on Continental Europe and in the United States, as well as in his native United Kingdom. Combe sought to improve the provision of public education and he advocated a national system of non-sectarian education. He was seriously concerned about prison reform and opened a debate about the introduction of the humane treatment of psychiatric patients in publicly funded asylums. Combe was part of an active Edinburgh scene composed of people thinking about the nature of heredity and its possible malleability, such as Lamarck proposed. Combe himself was not a Lamarckian, but in the decades before the publication of Darwin's Origin of Species, the Constitution was probably the single most important vehicle for the dissemination of naturalistic progressivism in the English-speaking world. In 1833, Combe married Cecilia Siddons, a daughter of the actress Sarah Siddons. She brought him a fortune, as well as a happy – though childless – marriage (preceded by a phrenological check for compatibility). A few years later, he retired from work as a lawyer in comfortable circumstances.