The soul takes a stroll: Early modern interpretations of a Hippocratic place
Thursday 26 January
Room 16, Medecroft Building, King Alfred Campus, University of Winchester, Sparkford Road, Winchester, Hampshire SO22 4NR
Dr Guido Giglioni, School of Advanced Study, University of London, will be giving this talk.
Hippocratic medicine was gradually rediscovered during the early modern period to such an extent that, starting with the seventeenth century, Hippocrates became more popular than Galen. One of the texts in the Hippocratic corpus to be read with particular interest was the Epidemics, a work collecting observations originally made by several itinerant physicians operating in Northern Greece between 400 and 350 BC. Book 6 of this work contains some interesting remarks concerning the relationship between physical and mental health; one, in particular, seems to compare the well-being of the mind to the action of taking a stroll. In my talk I will examine the reception of this particular section of the Epidemics by dwelling on some significant interpretations provided by different authors between the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries. This will also be an opportunity to discuss the idea that particular habits of thinking may have healthy or unhealthy effects on one's well-being.