The Library is hosting an exhibit, "And There's the Humor of it": Shakespeare and the Four Humors, from April 4 to May 13, 2016.
"And There's the Humor of it": Shakespeare and the Four Humors is a traveling exhibition developed and produced by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health and the Folger Shakespeare Library.
The four bodily humors were part of Shakespearean cosmology, inherited from the ancient Greek philosophers Aristotle, Hippocrates, and Galen. Organized around the four elements of earth, water, air, and fire; the four qualities of cold, hot, moist, and dry; and the four humors, these physical qualities determined the behavior of all created things including the human body.
"And there’s the humor of it": Shakespeare and the four humors explores the role played by the four humors in several of Shakespeare’s most beloved plays through beautiful imagery and rare books from both the NLM and the Folger Shakespeare Library. It also examines more modern interpretations of the four humors in contemporary medicine.