Healthy Living in Late Renaissance Italy

Hardcover | December 28, 2013

bySandra Cavallo, Tessa Storey

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Healthy Living in Late Renaissance Italy explores in detail the efforts made by men and women in late Renaissance Italy to stay healthy and prolong their lives. Drawing on a wide variety of sources - ranging from cheap healthy living guides in the vernacular to personal letters, conductliterature, household inventories, and surviving images and objects - this volume demonstrates that a sophisticated culture of prevention was being developed in sixteenth-century Italian cities. This culture sought to regulate the factors thought to influence health, and centred particularly on thehome and domestic routines such as sleep patterns, food and drink consumption, forms of exercise, hygiene, control of emotions, and monitoring the air quality to which the body was exposed. Concerns about healthy living also had a substantial impact on the design of homes and the dissemination of a range of household objects. This study thus reveals the forgotten role of medical concerns in shaping everyday life and domestic material culture. However, medicine was not the sole factorresponsible for these changes. The surge of interest in preventive medicine received new impetus from the development of the print industry. Moreover, it was fuelled by classical notions of wellbeing, re-proposed by humanist culture and by the new interest in geography and climates. Broader socialand religious trends also played a key role; most significantly, the nexus between attention to one's health and spiritual and moral worth promoted both by new ideas of what constituted nobility and by the Counter-Reformation.Six key areas were thought to influence the balance of "humours" within the body and Healthy Living in Late Renaissance Italy is organised into six main chapters which reflect these concerns: Air, Exercise, Sleep, Food and Drink, Managing the Emotions, and Bodily Hygiene. The volume is richlyillustrated, and offers an accessible but fascinating glimpse into both the domestic lives and health preoccupations of the early modern Italians.

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Healthy Living in Late Renaissance Italy explores in detail the efforts made by men and women in late Renaissance Italy to stay healthy and prolong their lives. Drawing on a wide variety of sources - ranging from cheap healthy living guides in the vernacular to personal letters, conductliterature, household inventories, and surviving i...

Tessa Storey is a Research Associate at Royal Holloway, University of London. Since 2009, she has been working as a research associate on the Wellcome funded research project which has made this book possible. She has published a number of chapters and articles on early modern Rome, as well as a book, Carnal Commerce in Counter Reform...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:352 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.1 inPublished:December 28, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199678138

ISBN - 13:9780199678136

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgementsList of Figures and IllustrationsList of AbbreviationsIntroduction1. Print and a Culture of Prevention2. Practices of Healthy Living: the Sources3. Worrying About the Air4. A Good Night's Sleep5. Gentle Exercise and Genteel Living6. The Well-Tempered Man7. 'Salute' (Cheers)! Drinking to Your Health8. Excretions as Excrements: the Hygiene of the BodyConclusionsBibliography