Renaissance advice on mind and mood

A couple of quotes from the 16th and 17th centuries that still hold true today. The first from Leonardo da Vinci’s Notebooks, dated 1508:

Irons rusts from disuse, stagnant water loses its purity and in cold weather becomes frozen; even so does inaction sap the vigor of the mind.

Which reminded me of Robert Burton’s advice for combating depression, given in his landmark 17th century book, The Anatomy of Melancholy:

Observe this short precept — Be not solitary; be not idle.

Both sets of advice hold true today. Modern studies have shown that exercise boosts mood and prevents cognitive decline.

One Comment

  1. graatch
    Posted July 25, 2007 at 5:37 am | Permalink

    Not only that, but social isolation is causative of ADD-like symptoms, and depression!

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