A well-accepted theory from the times of the great Hippocrates is that human nature is understood by the four fluids that each control a type of temperament. The four temperaments are:
- Sanguine – Blood-driven – optimistic, active and social
- Choleric – Bile-driven – Short-tempered, fast or irritable
- Melancholic – Black bile-driven – analytical, wise and quiet
- Phlegmatic – phlegma – Relaxed and peaceful
According to the Cappadocian scholar Kore of Unre, this is largely true of them as well. In her book “De rerum vampira”, she argues that the humours are passed on from the progenitor of the geni. All twelve progenitors have a combination of a dominant and a recessive humour that has defined the traits and interersts of the geni.
For vampires, however, the behaviour varies somewhat because of their very nature, that of being undead:
- Sanguine – Blood-driven – Active, social, charismatic, human-centric
- Choleric – Bile-driven – Short-tempered, competitive, tactical, leaders
- Melancholic – Black bile-driven – analytical, occult and wise
- Phlegmatic – phlegma – Planning ahead, patient, uninhibited
As the twelve clans have each a unique combination of dominant and recessive, Kore argues that vampires were at some point created by a superior being in an alchemical and occult ritual. Many scholars have spent time looking for any fragment of this ritual and for the power of creating vampires without the Embrace.
Division of humours among the vampire geni:
The sanguine include the Toreador (recessive choleric), the Disciples of Set (recessive phlegmatic) and the Assamite (recessive melancholic)
The choleric include the Ventrue (recessive phlegmatic), the Lasombra (recessive melancholic) and the Bruia (recessive sanguine).
The melancholic include the Malkavian (recessive choleric), the Salubri (recessive sanguine) and the Cappadocian (recessive phlegmatic).
The phlegmatic include Baali (recessive sanguine), the Gangrel (recessive choleric) and the Nosferatu (recessive melancholic).
This is meant to describe the genus as a whole, not the individual. This means that a scholar Toreador and a socialite Cappadocian is far from uncommon, but the general feel of the genus is the reverse. It is also thought that a way of quelling the beast is to behave in accordance with these principles.
The theory of the Four Humours has been embellished by many scholars, including the Bruia Mamercus Malleolus argued that the understanding of the relationship between the geni is understood by the juxtapositions. For example are the Baali and the Disciples of Set moving in opposite direction, but they have the same fluids. This makes them understand one another better than a Baali would a Cappadocian. Conversely, those with no fluids in common hardly understand one another, such as the Nosferatu and the Toreador.