Yet from the purely historical point of view its evidential value is not the same as that of St Mark.
His Reasons for the Christian Religion is still, for its evidential purpose, better than most works of its kind.
38) which have no excellence of workmanship, but have a certain evidential value as to the treatment of their original.
From an evidential point of view the apparition is the most valuable class of death-warning, inasmuch as recognition is more difficult in the case of an auditory hallucination, even where it takes the form of spoken words; moreover, auditory hallucinations coinciding with deaths may be mere knocks, ringing of bells, &c.; tactile hallucinations are still more difficult of recognition; and the hallucinations of smell which are sometimes found as death-warnings rarely have anything to associate them specially with the dead person.
These were, in fact, simply the popular theories of sacrifice put on an evidential basis by facts drawn from various stages of culture.