By Dominic Montserrat
First released in 2004. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.
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Additional resources for Changing Bodies, Changing Meanings: Studies on the Human Body in Antiquity
The stone, dumb (kophon, a common metaphor for death) but alive with the spirit of vengeance, rebounded, punishing him with the loss of ‘his sweet sight’ (glykerou blemmatos). The emphasis on the right arm, no doubt, served as an ironic contrast between the evil that is represented by left-handedness, and the evil and the profane that had been perpetrated. There are also examples of the community or state punishing individuals for offences against the community and its welfare. Herodotus’ account of Euenius’ blinding by the people of Apollonia, because he fell asleep while guarding Apollo’s flock of sheep, which was then savaged by wolves, is an example of the state punishing a culprit-victim to deflect feared divine punishment of the community as a whole.
9 The ancient world did not have conveniently constructed definitions of disability, especially classifications that also connoted social status. 12 The primary concern is the classification of a heterogenous collection of physical conditions, a variety of causes, and ambivalent social attitudes into a common and recognisable group. In c. 400 BCE the crippled client of Lysias claimed a pension from the Athenian administration because his impairment prevented him from earning a living (Lys. xxiv 6).
Iii 4, 13). Disease could permanently disable some part of the body, for example, asthma or a cough in pre-puberty could cause a child permanent gibbosity (Aph. vi 46). Dislocation and limb fractures were often mendable, unless gangrene had set in due to the severity of the injury, requiring amputation. While accidents may break limbs, the development of personality and physical character and the propensity for disease were also influenced by climate (hot or cold, wet or dry) and geography (hilly or flat, marshy or barren).
Changing Bodies, Changing Meanings: Studies on the Human Body in Antiquity by Dominic Montserrat