Meaning of 'temperament' (Webster Dictionary)
- Internal constitution; state with respect to the
relative proportion of different qualities, or constituent parts.
- Due mixture of qualities; a condition brought about
by mutual compromises or concessions.
- The act of tempering or modifying; adjustment, as
of clashing rules, interests, passions, or the like; also, the means by
which such adjustment is effected.
- Condition with regard to heat or cold; temperature.
- A system of compromises in the tuning of organs,
pianofortes, and the like, whereby the tones generated with the
vibrations of a ground tone are mutually modified and in part canceled,
until their number reduced to the actual practicable scale of twelve
tones to the octave. This scale, although in so far artificial, is yet
closely suggestive of its origin in nature, and this system of tuning,
although not mathematically true, yet satisfies the ear, while it has
the convenience that the same twelve fixed tones answer for every key
or scale, C/ becoming identical with D/, and so on.
- The peculiar physical and mental character of an
individual, in olden times erroneously supposed to be due to individual
variation in the relations and proportions of the constituent parts of
the body, especially of the fluids, as the bile, blood, lymph, etc.
Hence the phrases, bilious or choleric temperament, sanguine
temperament, etc., implying a predominance of one of these fluids and a
corresponding influence on the temperament.