I came across this interesting document a few days ago. We may have coronavirus nowadays, but some of these diseases and causes of death make me feel lucky to have been born in the 20th century not the 17th century:
Thankfully the nation’s health is somewhat better these days, but I was curious to find out a little more about some of these illnesses and diseases, so I did a little research:
- Ague – an illness involving fever and shivering.
- Cut of the Stone – stones forming inside certain organs, e.g. kidneys.
- Dropsie – swelling of the soft tissue due to accumulation of excess water.
- Impostume – a swelling containing puss, e.g. an abscess.
- Jawfaln – literally a fallen jaw, also known a lockjaw.
- King’s Evil – tuberculosis where the royal touch was supposed to cure the disease
- Quinsie – any kind of illness characterised by a hoarse cough, difficulty breathing or a choking sensation.
- Tympany – a condition where chest or abdomen is distended with gas.
- Tissick – a name for any of several diseases of the lungs involving coughing or difficulty in breathing.
I have an illness, Motor Neurone Disease and been looked after within the UK health system over the last four years. I have nothing but praise and admiration for the NHS and everyone who works in our wonderful healthcare system.
My care has been second to none and the people who work in the NHS are all wonderful, dedicated people who often get taken for granted. If you ever feel like having a moan about the NHS, think what it would have been like in 1632!