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Wild melancholy : on the historical plausibility of a black bile theory of blood madness, or hæmatomania

Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel

Ondertitel:Wild melancholy : on the historical plausibility of a black bile theory of blood madness, or haematomania
Nineteenth-century art historian John Addington Symonds coined the term h AE matomania (blood madness) for the extremely bloodthirsty behaviour of a number of disturbed rulers like Ibrahim II of Ifriqiya (850-902) and Ezzelino da Romano (1194-1259). According to Symonds, this mental pathology was linked to melancholy and caused by an excess of black bile. I explore the historical credibility of this theory of 'wild melancholy', a type of melancholia that crucially deviates from the lethargic main type. I conclude that in its pure form Symonds' black bile theory of h AE matomania was never a broadly supported perspective, but can be traced back to the nosology of the ninth-century physician Ishaq ibn Imran, who practised at the Aghlabid court, to which the sadistic Ibrahim II belonged.
Tijdschrift: HISTORY OF PSYCHIATRY
ISSN: 1740-2360
Issue: 2
Volume: 31
Pagina's: 131 - 146
Jaar van publicatie:2020
Toegankelijkheid:Closed