Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(898 words)

Sleep (Greek hýpnos, Latin somnus), the opposite of being awake, is a necessarily recurring state; in antiquity it was already thought of as the brother of death and a bridge to dreaming (Dream), but the phenomenon was also approached with scientific interest: Aristotle described sleep as a physiological process which, together with digestion, enables the revival of bodily functions and cognition. In the medicine of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, Aristotle’s theory was recognized, but the humoralism and dietetics of Hippocrates and Galen were more influential. …

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Kinzler, Sonja, “Sleep”, 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 30 September 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_027108>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20180208

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