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A modern dictionary of 5,679 Catholic terms (including abbreviations), both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases. All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

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Term

FOUR TEMPERAMENTS

Definition

The four classic dispositions of human beings, traceable to Aristotle: namely, sanguine, melancholic, choleric, and lethargic or phlegmatic. While no person has exclusively any one of these temperaments, people generally have one or the other disposition as their dominant quality. Knowing this, they are better prepared to cope with their natural weaknesses and tendencies in the pursuit of spiritual perfection.