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Observation of a body (1)

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05 Scientific knowledge and scholarly lore

05 Scientific knowledge and scholarly lore

2nd century BCE
Roman Empire
Helleno-Roman philosophers and scholars

Polemo F.160.6-162.7:
When the eye is open with a shimmer like marble and a sharp gaze, it indicates little modesty. This is the type of eye found in men who are not like the rest, like a eunuch born without testicles rather than castrated. I doubt whether you could find anyone of this type apart from the one who was from the land known as that of the Celts. He was lustful and dissolute beyond all measure, for his eyes were those of the worst type of man, just like that description … he had a puffy (?) forehead, soft cheeks, a wide mouth, a long, thin neck, thick legs and fleshy feet. His voice was just like a woman’s, and all the rest of his limbs and extremities were soft; and he did not walk upright, but with slack joints and limbs. He took great care of his person, [by nourishing] his thick hair, and by rubbing medicaments into his body, in short, using anything to arouse desire for sex and coitus. He had a voice like a woman’s, thin lips. In the whole human race, I never saw anything like him or his eyes.

Source (list of abbreviations)
Polemo F.160.6-162.7


Barton 1994, 118Barton, Tamsyn. Power and Knowledge, Astrology, Physiognomics, and Medicine under the Roman Empire. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press 1994.

Amar Annus

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