Dysmorphology Course
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"Portrait bust of a Man on a Herm (known as Socrates) on a herm from the Augustan era c.20 AD" (see related A | B | C | D | E | F), c. 2 BC Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Tuscany, Italy

Socrates created the basis for Western Civilization, that is, its philosophical principles - he may be credited for injecting the word "philo - sophia" (love of wisdom) into European languages along with the notion that ignorance is evil. 

Condemned to death for impiety (lethal religious intolerance is common to this day - it is as if those who "love gods" hate humans - the historic facts are so numerous that it is indisputable that religions , interpreted by plebes, fuel violence. Socrates was offered freedom in exchange of not sharing - teaching his philosophy - he felt that living without free speech was not worth it and chose to commit suicide by swallowing hemlock (conium). 

From a Medical perspective, five points arise: 
1 - Ingestion of Conium is toxic (similar effects to curare) causing respiratory paralysis.  
2 - Conium is a teratogen - chronic poisoning or exposure during embryogenesis is a cause of spontaneous abortions - later exposures cause clefts of the palate (palatoschisis) and neuromuscular anomalies (arthrogryposis - contractures) - pastures were conium thrives are associated with reproductive failures of grazing cattle. 
3 - a question regarding suicide is weather such act is compatible with a "normal" mind. 
4 - Socrates face is very characteristic to the point that could be called a facies (diagnostic) mostly due to his characteristic pointed nose - since human faces are very heterogeneous and since Socrates is recognizable, the question is weather his facies is "normal" - such question illustrates the fallacy of equating statistical definitions with "biologic significance" - statistics equate inert matter with the living - declarations that 5% of persons with signs absent in 95% of others are "abnormal" is false, even if such is softened by using the synonym "variants" (variat in Ukrainian means demented) - Clinical Geneticists note that concurrence of "various variants" is a signal of "major" malformations - accordingly, we should suspect  Socrates of having "major" anomalies - the concurrence of his facies with his unusually high ethical standards render Socrates is statistically a signal of "abnormal" and even perhaps an "association" to be investigated (to what extend noses correlate with the sense of ethics) - extreme examples illuminate the more usual and in this instance, statistics can not judge what is "desirable" and what is not - thus, statistically Socrates is "abnormal". To close, the fact that in statistics the 100% implies full knowledge of a "standard" or "normal" population under statistical analysis is also a fallacy - no human populations is fully known because all represent ongoing shifts of admixtures of unknown genomes.    
5 - Hemlock (Conium), in Greek is KONAS which illuminates the root of the Ukrainian word KONATY - in Greek it means to whirl, one of the symptoms of poisoning by hemlock - KONATY in Ukrainian mostly implies AGONY which underscores GONOS for angle (as in trigonometry) associated with "twirling" and TORTURE and CONTORT.   

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