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By Valerie Hope

Human frailty and mortality impression the constitution and functioning of all societies; questions of ways the ancients coped with their very own mortality, how they sought to categorise and keep watch over the reasons of loss of life, and the way they taken care of the demise and the lifeless, are for that reason relevant to any knowing of antiquity. This cutting edge quantity attracts upon contemporary study in archaeology, historical background, and the background of drugs to judge these kind of matters. It addresses a variety of themes, together with perspectives of historical affliction causation; private and non-private well-being measures; how the common and concrete surroundings affected the health and wellbeing of the person; how the town used to be organised to guard the wellbeing and fitness and safeguard of the residing; and the way the dwelling sought safety from the polluting effect of either the diseased and the lifeless. Lucid and obtainable, this paintings is the 1st to unite the examine of dying and illness in antiquity, supplying precious insights into how those elements formed the traditional urban. it's going to charm not just to classical students and scholars, yet to all these attracted to the historical past of loss of life and sickness.

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110 and Arist. Pol. 1302b34–42): the city as a corporate entity, subject to the stresses, processes and dysfunctions of the human body (see Brock, Marshall, this volume). The frame of such a city is, I shall argue, marked out by its walls, within which dread disorders can arise. By the late fifth century, the city walls, intended to provide protection for the citizenry, come to be regarded as structures that can also preserve, encourage and even breed destruction. The impact of the environment on human health and behaviour Let us begin with those among our classical sources who confront the problem of disease most often, that is, the fifth- and early fourth-century medical writers represented in the Hippocratic Corpus: do they perceive a relationship between urban living, density of population and disease?

Esp. 17; Thgn. 39–52), they do not represent the sickness which falls on the city as a punishment of Athens or Megara at large. Indeed, the sickness of civil strife is never, I think, presented as sent by the gods, or as a judgement on the body suffering it, or as a reflection of general corruption. Il. 384–92; Hes. WD 225–47; Hom. Od. 109–14). It would not be surprising if there remained in Greek minds in later periods a residual concern that the moral character of their leaders might carry risks for the city at large, as Parker argues (1983:265–71), but it is far from clear that this carries implications of pollution or contagion, as Connor (1985: esp.

Callimachus explicitly represents Apollo’s role in maintaining civic order in terms of him providing cities with medical remedies. In an intriguing passage, Callimachus says that Apollo’s ‘hair trickles fragrant oils on the ground; his hair does not drip fat but panacea. 38–41). In this passage, panacea could be seen either as the goddess Panacea or as a herb (Williams 1978:44). However, the fact that Callimachus describes this panacea as springing from the ground suggests that it is a plant. 7 Whether this panacea is silphium or another herb, Callimachus describes Apollo as protecting cities by giving them a medical remedy.

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