De Humana Physiognomonia

Giovanni Battista Della Porta, De humana physiognomonia, 1586

The first systematic physiognomic treatise to survive to the present is the Physiognomica ascribed to Aristotle. The text discusses about the nature of behaviors, and is divided into two parts, the first section focuses on the human behaviors, the second on animal. From this comparison are deduced correspondences between human and animal disposition, and between form and character.

Inspired by Aristotle, 1586 Giovanni Battista Della Porta, Italian philosopher, alchemist and playwright, published his book De Humana Physiognomonia which argued that the facial appearance, contrary to contemporary believe, are not influenced by astrological configurations but by the temperament.
To illustrate this, he compares the analogy between different human temperaments and corresponding animals, and findes the morphological correspondence.

The History of Physiognomy