(From black, and bile). Melancholy; delirium melancholicum, erotomania, panophobia, athymia. Dr. Cullen places it as a genus in the class neuroses, order vesaniae, and defines it, a partial insanity, without dyspepsia. (Vide mania.) Melancholy and hypochondriasis are so nearly allied, that the distinction is difficult. Dyspepsy is, however, a commonly attendant symptom of the latter; but absent in the former.
Of this Dr. Cullen distinguishes eight varieties, arising from the objects of false conceptions. 1st, from being fearful of the dangerous state of the constitution; or, 2dly, from a false conception of their more prosperous situation; 3dly, from violent love, without the irritation of lust; 4thly, a superstitious fear, of a future state; 5thly, a dislike of motion, and all the-offices of life; 6thly, with inquietude and restlessness; 7thly, with a weariness of life; 8thly, from a man's false conception of the nature of his own species, fancying himself a dog, a horse, or some other animal.
Melancholy, however, is in general the beginning or a less degree of madness, and the highest degree of hypochondriasis. Each passes gradually into the other; and they all often, at last, terminate in alienation of mind. See Mania.