Encyclopedia of Personality and Individual Differences

Living Edition
| Editors: Virgil Zeigler-Hill, Todd K. Shackelford

New York Longitudinal Study (NYLS)

  • Margaret E. HertzigEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-28099-8_476-1


It can be defined as Study of Temperament during infancy, childhood, adolescence and young adulthood.


The New York Longitudinal Study (NYLS), launched by Alexander Thomas and Stella Chess in 1956, marks the beginning of modern interest in the study of temperament. Although the scientific study of temperament is relatively recent, the idea of grouping human beings into basic behavioral types is centuries old. Historically, temperament refers to those biologically based differences between individuals that emerge early in life and are expressed with relative consistency across situations and over time. Galen described four basic temperaments – choleric, melancholic, sanguine, and phlegmatic – attributable to a preponderance of one or another of Hippocrates’s four cardinal humors, black bile, yellow bile, phlegm, and blood. In the early years of the twentieth century, Kretchmer in Germany and Sheldon in the United States examined the relationship between basic...

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Weill Cornell MedicineNew YorkUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Anna Czarna
    • 1
  1. 1.Jagiellonian UniversityKrakowPoland