Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(904 words)

The term complexion, from Latin complexio (“combination”; equivalent to Greek krásis, “mixing”), referred primarily to the mingling or mixing (Latin mixtiotemperatiotemperamentum) of the humors in the human body; until well into the 19th century, it was used synonymously with temperamentum or temperament .

The theory of complexion or temperament was intimately associated with humoralism, according to which every person is born with his or her own mixture of humors, usually with one being predominant; it influences the physical, m…

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Schattner, Angela, “Complexion”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 22 February 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_022478>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170206

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