One of the earliest known personality theories is the Bodily Humors Theory by Claudius Galenus. He was an important Greco-Roman surgeon and philosopher who lived from 129 AD until 200-216 AD. His way of thinking is primarily influenced by humorism. This is Hippocrates’ theory that the human body was filled with 4 bodily fluids. Together these were called humors. Those four were blood, phlegm, yellow bile and black bile. Any excess or deficit of one of these four fluids was thought to have influences on someone’s physical or psychological well being. It was also thought it would influence your personality. What was new was that Galenus linked these fluids to combinations of four base-qualities, warm, cold, dry and moist, which in turn were thought to have an influence on your temperament characteristics. It’s long been discredited, but it’s still an interesting insight into psychological history. Which temperament are you according to the old Roman surgeon?
Take the quiz below and find out!