One way to characterize melancholia is as a survivor. Of the four classical temperaments, only the melancholic persists, having long eclipsed the choleric, the phlegmatic, and the sanguine in contemporary culture. Such resilience may be attributed, at least in part, to the concept’s flexibility: melancholia has been both cursed as a cause of inactivity and illness, and celebrated as a source of intellectual and artistic creativity. Melancholia has evolved from humanist pathology to psychological condition, has become a mood and aesthetic, ubiquitous and adaptable to new contexts. Melancholia persists both as a private emotion and an intellectual and artistic mode—a way of framing and understanding experience—and is poised for renewed contemplation.