What did the Romans—ordinary people or historians like Herodianus and Plinius—call the people who today are considered, in the modern sense, "autistic", or "schizoid". In fact, how did they define people who met asocial characteristics?

  • 2
    Like almost all diagnoses of clinical psychology, these are very modern categories that weren't distinguished and/or didn't meaningfully exist before the 20th century. You aren't going to find contemporary Roman terminology for them.
    – Cairnarvon
    Aug 5, 2023 at 22:10
  • The study of the brain/psychology in any serious way is about 100 years old. The ancients likely just called these types of people crazy or dumb. Aug 7, 2023 at 1:08
  • depending on the specific individual being referred to and their relationship with the writer there's a good chance you'd see words whose translation would now be considered offensive. It is occasionally suggested that schizophrenia and related illnesses might be connected to ancient accounts of prophecy etc so it's possible they might be described as a propheta, vates, fatidicus, etc
    – Tristan
    Aug 8, 2023 at 14:23


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.