Saturn and Melancholy: Studies in the History of Natural Philosophy, Religion, and Art
Erwin Panofsky, Raymond Klibansky, Fritz Saxl
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A reprint of the original, published in 1964 by Thomas Nelson & Sons Ltd. Devoted in the main to a reading of Albrecht Dürer's famous engraving, the "Melencolia I" and the metaphysical relation of melancholy to artistic inspiration, this volume is also, as one Goodreads review puts it, "perfect for anyone interested in the Graeco-Roman concept of Kronos/Saturnus, in the Islamic Golden Age and how great physical/medical thinkers in Baghdad and great religious thinkers in Sevilla and Cordoba kept Greek traditions alive during a thousand years of Catholic isolation, and in genuinely wacky "nonfiction" ala Borges (the endlessly recursive essay, the zahir, the great Argentine's own obsession with the Qabbalah and its intermingling with Anglo-Saxon poetry)."
rule governing poetic displJ.tations that "he who has the last word wins"-Melancholy is shown to be superior to the jovial enjoyment of life. While the " Dame Merencolye" of the French romances, like Ripa's "Malinconia", had been a sort of nightmare, inspiring the reader with ~ even greater fear and repulsion, if that were possible, than her ancestress "Dame Tristesse," Milton's Melancholy is called "divinest", and celebrated as a "goddess sage and holy" and as a " Pensive Nun, devout and pure".
of expression arise to rescue the serious and real meaning of melancholy. Therefore, true melancholy, while it fled from the painted backcloths of ruins, vaults and cloisters, is now found, e.g., in t he bitter wit of Lessing's later letters, or in the deliberately fragmentary style of Sterne, which was but a symbol of the eternal tragicomic incompleteness of existence as such . It can be perceived in those regions of the mind explored by Watteau and Mozart in which reality and fantasy,
complexion (,'luteique colons", "facies nigra"); me1ancholic. 4. OLD AGE ";' Winter; plwnp body, lethargic nature, pale complexion :("pinguis (~ies", "color albus"); phlegmatic, , F~om this summary it is clear that th~ complexions can only be apportioned as follows: John is the sanguine, Mark (whose symbol, moreover, is the lion, the beast symbolic of the "cholera rubra'J is the choleric, Paul the melancholic, and Peter the phlegipatic.3il4 <• In The anthon' remarks on the c.olDuring have
tristitiu, timores, dubitationes, malal imagination«. suspiciones & sim,Jia . Qu ... e t IC u nguine est ... rdente, alien ... tionem, cum ritu ct laetili... . Corpus inftnni macid um . color r u be,,~ . Pili in corpore 5unt nimli, n isi in pecton, uenae laue, oculi rubei, pulsus m... gIl Il S. pillum uelox. . . . . In hu mori bus ex colera rubea, habent alien ... tionem, clamorem, instabilitatem, lIigiliilS, non quiescllnt, mu ltum ir.ucuntur, calidum h ... be nt tactum sine f~bro. mac,ditatem.
eius. Hoc est quod narravt.runt ex naturis elementorum et co~m'xtlon~m . . . . ~e~iPiuutur cnim nature eornm (i.e. planetarum) atqne colores per co.ccord ',,"'" calor.s corum cum colore harum UtI commixtionum. quia cuius planete colorem ndemus concorda~e~\lm colore harum commixtionu m. scimus quod natu ra eiusdem pLanete sit «mcors (]a.ture ~'U em clementi clli ipsa com mi.~tio concordat per naturam ac proprietatem. Et s.' fu eTl~ col~r planck :live",u. a colore J i ll co mmixtionum. commiscemu5