From early modernity to the Enlightenment Early modern Europeans had sought a ‘scientifi c’ discourse concerning the emotions and passions. Initially they relied on a psychophysiological conceptualization, Galenic humoralism. Galenic four-humor theory held that a person’s health and temperament depended on a balance between four humors and their associated affective states (black bile, sanguinity and optimism; yellow bile, anger and irritation; phlegm, calmness and apathy; blood, melancholy and depression) (Temkin 1973). This fourfold model held sway for two millennia, before the development of modern medicine upended it in the 17th and 18th centuries. Galenic descriptions of passions and temperaments were henceforth downgraded from actual phenomena to mere metaphors (Paster 2004), and scholars began to see the passions of the mind and body in a new light.