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Dr. Giouli Korobili

Research Interests:

Aristotle, ancient science, Greco-Roman medicine, Lucretius, Seneca, Byzantine commentators on Aristotle


Giouli Korobili has been a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Post-doctoral Fellow at the University of Utrecht and has held several post-doctoral positions in Berlin. She studied Classical Philology in Athens (BA), Ioannina (MA) and Berlin (PhD). She has contributed to a number of collective volumes on Aristotle, ancient medicine and Byzantine Aristotelian commentators. She is the author of "Aristotle. On Youth and Old Age, Life and Death, and Respiration 1-6: With Translation, Introduction and Interpretation” (Springer 2022) and co-author of a forthcoming Commentary on the fragments of the Greek physician Praxagoras of Cos. Her forthcoming book deals with medical analogies found in meteorological accounts of Greco-Roman antiquity.

Project Abstract

Living bodies and environmental phenomena (climate, seasons, meteorological events) are viewed by ancient Greek thinkers as having at least three features in common: they occur in time; they are subject to change; and they perform certain processes the outcomes of which are of decisive importance for their maintenance. According to Aristotle, places on the earth do not remain the same through time, but change, and these changes follow some order and cycle. The reason for this is that the interior of the earth passes through its stages of acme and old age, just like the bodies of plants and animals (Meteorology I.14). Similarly the seasons change periodically; yet it might be that they bring with them unexpectedly extreme conditions of heat and cold which can decisively affect the natural life-cycle of plants: while under normal circumstances plants tend to synchronise their internal heat regulation to seasonal change, during hot spells or severe frost they quickly dry up. (On Youth 6). In the Hippocratic On the Nature of Man 7 and 8, one of the four bodily humours is said to prevail over the others in accordance with its increase in each season of the year. 

Such accounts testify that (a) the idea of what we might call ‘natural synchronicity’ between living bodies and the environment can be found as early as the sources mentioned above; and that (b) at least in some cases it appears to govern the changes that determine the maintenance of living bodies or the occurrence of environmental phenomena. At the same time, such accounts call for a solution to the crucial problem of the identification of the vital principles upon which synchronous changes rest. 

This project aims to bring to light neglected views on the deep bonds linking the living body to the body of the earth (broadly speaking) and the environment. To do so, it sets out to closely examine aspects of natural synchronicity (and subsequent re-synchronicity after human intervention, when applicable) between living bodies (humans, animals, plants) and environmental phenomena in the Aristotelian and the Hippocratic corpus.

Curriculum vitae


Marie Skłodowska-Curie Post-Doctoral Fellow (Project Title: GEOANATOMY. The Body as a Model in Greco-Roman Conceptions of the Earth and the Environment).


BBAW Post-Doctoral Fellow (Project Title: Theodorus Metochites’ Commentary on Aristotle’s PA I. Preparation for CAGB first edition).


RTG ‘Philosophy, Science and the sciences’ Post-Doctoral Fellow (Project Title: Philosophy meets Biology in Byzantium. Michael of Ephesus on Aristotle’s views of Life and Death).


Berlin Cluster of Excellence ‘TOPOI’ Post-Doctoral Fellow (Project Title: Mapping the Vegetative Soul in Aristotle and Beyond).


PhD in Classics, Humboldt University of Berlin. 


MA in Classics, University of Ioannina, Greece.


BA in Classics, National & Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece.

Selected Publications

Forthcoming. GEOANATOMY. The Body as a Model for the World in Ancient Philosophy. Euhormos Series. Leiden: Brill.

Forthcoming (co-authored with K. Stefou). The Fragments of Praxagoras of Cos. A Translation, with Introduction and Notes. Crete University Press.

2022. Aristotle. On Youth and Old Age, Life and Death, and Respiration 1-6. With Translation, Introduction and Interpretation. Cham: Springer.

2021 (co-edited with R. Lo Presti). Nutrition and Nutritive Soul in Aristotle and Aristotelianism. Topics in Ancient Philosophy 9. Berlin, Boston: De Gruyter.

2018. “What do People Call Death? Aristotle’s Scientific Approach to a Natural Phenomenon.” In Oeconomia Corporis. The Body’s Normal and Pathological Constitution at the Intersection of Philosophy and Medicine, edited by Ch. Beneduce and D. Vincenti, 21-29. Collana Mefisto supplement 7. Pisa: Edizioni ETS.

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