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71 votes

How has hearing loss been avoided in war?

Until the 1940s, it was believed that the cure to loud noises was developing a tolerance to them: The pervasive attitude of the early 1900s was that hearing loss could be prevented by developing a ...
called2voyage's user avatar
39 votes

How has hearing loss been avoided in war?

In Germany Maximilian Negwer founded the company "Fabrik pharmazeutischer und kosmetischer Spezialitäten Max Negwer" in 1907. The first package of Ohropax noise protectors was sold in autumn 1908 for ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
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38 votes
Accepted

Did germophobia exist in classical antiquity?

What is germaphobia? It's an obsession, it "is a pathological fear of contamination and germs. " If we look for something similar in antiquity we just need to turn that onto its feet: this ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
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38 votes
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Did medieval kingdoms issue health related guidelines?

Missum imperatori de pestilentia is one such guideline, written in 1371 for the emperor Charles IV for dissemination. It was based on the Paris Plague Concilium Tractate of 1348 written by the faculty ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
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36 votes
Accepted

Is there a record of a rabid human attacking another human?

Using the historic term for rabies, hydrophobia, and searching 19th century documents, records of infected patients biting caregivers can be found quite readily. The 1879 edition of The Dublin Journal ...
justCal's user avatar
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15 votes

Did medieval kingdoms issue health related guidelines?

One famous source for life during medieval pandemic is the introduction of Boccaccio's Decamerone, which describes the Black Death in Florence in 1348: And against this pestilence no human wisdom or ...
Jan's user avatar
  • 9,216
14 votes

Did germophobia exist in classical antiquity?

Obsessive compulsive disorders do not exist in a vacuum - you have to put them in their context. Mysophobia is stereotyped as excessively washing hands today, but it is not intrinsically about hand ...
Semaphore's user avatar
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13 votes
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Did the emperor Ashoka really build hospitals or is that a myth?

Short Answer The available evidence for hospitals set up on the orders of Ashoka is inconclusive, but several scholars have suggested that it is at least likely that there was some type of hospital, ...
Lars Bosteen's user avatar
11 votes

What was the life expectancy of a Medieval European monarch?

For England, including the Kings of Wessex from Æthelberht on (the first I could find a birthdate for), and the Kings of England up to Edward IV, whose reigns extends to 1483 (and consequently into ...
Luís Henrique's user avatar
11 votes

What was the life expectancy of a Medieval European monarch?

(Partial answer.) I think three points are worth noting about life expectancy before comparing today's figures with those in the past: Life expectancy at birth isn't such a great data point, when ...
Denis de Bernardy's user avatar
11 votes
Accepted

What's the earliest evidence of drug abuse?

The way that the question is framed is laced with quite modern conceptions of "abuse" and "drugs" that would be completely incomprehensible for earlier people. Yet the word 'drug' ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
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11 votes
Accepted

Did ancient people regularly suffer from colds?

Short Answer It is difficult to determine how common or regular colds and especially influenza were in ancient times, primarily because the most obvious symptoms can be identified with a large number ...
Lars Bosteen's user avatar
11 votes

Did medieval kingdoms issue health related guidelines?

It was a little after the medieval period (though very British), but King James' A Counterblaste to Tobacco from 1604 is an oft-cited early example of public health guidance and one of the earliest ...
Robert Columbia's user avatar
  • 3,717
9 votes

Why did slave dealers and buyers in the Antebellum South especially value enslaved persons with "good teeth" and "good front teeth"?

The suggestion by @MCW in comments -- that veterinarians check the teeth of livestock -- is unfortunately probably the right track to follow. Southern Slave traders and slave buyers routinely stated ...
AlabamaScholiast's user avatar
9 votes
Accepted

What is the first recorded instance of jet lag?

A paper from the Federal Aviation Administration appears to be the first rigorous examination of the pesky phenomenon of jet lag. It's titled Time-Zone Effects on the Long-Distance Air Traveler, and ...
CDR's user avatar
  • 997
9 votes
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Is there folk knowledge associating late breastfeeding with low intelligence and/or gullibility?

However one interprets "late-breast-fed fools", Sixto Rodriguez is unlikely to be referring to any folk knowledge, nor to any widely held belief. Poverty and / or class prejudice are more likely ...
Lars Bosteen's user avatar
7 votes

What was the life expectancy of a Medieval European monarch?

This answer is intended to complement those of Denis de Bernardy and Luís Henrique When compared over a similar time period, Danish, French and Leonese monarchs had shorter lives than their English ...
Lars Bosteen's user avatar
6 votes

Did the invention of crowns/diadems come from a desire to ward off headaches?

Tiara A Tiara is already mentioned by Herodotus, about 300 years earlier: TIARA To the Greeks the τιάρα or τιάρας was known only as the head-dress of the Persians. Herodotus, whose information on ...
Trish's user avatar
  • 669
5 votes

Why would "loose women" give you bad health?

Short answer: Gonorrhea and syphilis, neither of which was curable until around WWII (with the advent of penicillin). There were other lesser-known incurable (at the time) STDs as well. Your ...
Jurp's user avatar
  • 432
5 votes
Accepted

What is the first documented eating disorder?

It looks like some of the first recorded disorder of "Anorexia" were in the 1st Century based on references below, but I disagree with this theory. Still some people claim you can find evidence of ...
EvanM's user avatar
  • 2,323
5 votes

Was the high consumption of (red) wine in Ancient Rome preventive of scurvy?

Wine has no vitamin C at all, so the answer would be: definitely no. But there's a twist. To expand on @LarsBosteen's comment: the wiki page on Posca and romae-vitam.com claim that Posca, rather than ...
Denis de Bernardy's user avatar
5 votes

How has hearing loss been avoided in war?

A personal experience: as a recruit in the South African Army (1980), I used to be issued disposable wax plugs on range days - well, actually only one. I had to share (a great way for the Army to cut ...
Quintin's user avatar
  • 351
5 votes

Is there folk knowledge associating late breastfeeding with low intelligence and/or gullibility?

Yes. Don’t Poison the Baby With Angry Breast Milk Several advice books suggested that mothers could harm their babies by thinking the wrong sorts of thoughts. The Sadlers, husband-and-wife doctors ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
  • 80.9k
4 votes

Is there folk knowledge associating late breastfeeding with low intelligence and/or gullibility?

I suspect it's just a poetic riff on the less well off in society. I only did some cursory googling (searching for myths, misconceptions, etc.), but I failed to find the slightest trace of hints that ...
Denis de Bernardy's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Which STD did adults & children have in Kamchatka?

Helpful comments above indicate that the disease was syphilis. This is backed up by secondary sources: Jones's Empire of Extinction describes it as "rampant". Jochelson's The Kamchadals called it "...
Aaron Brick's user avatar
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4 votes

How has hearing loss been avoided in war?

Not exactly primary sources, lol, but Forester & O'Brien are widely regarded to have been sticklers about getting the technical and historical details right in their novels of the Napoleonic era, ...
user31338's user avatar
2 votes

When and where did the myth about solar eclipse affecting pregnant women start?

Cursory googling suggests the superstitions date back to Hindu beliefs and Aztec times, so tracing the superstitions' exact origins and their precise explanations may prove very hard or impossible. ...
Denis de Bernardy's user avatar
2 votes

What is the first documented eating disorder?

Food disorders are probably as old as humans. Purging after meals was recorded in Ancient Egypt as a health ritual, as well as in early China, Persia and Rome (1). Purging wasn't particularly common ...
Uri Granta's user avatar
  • 1,303
1 vote

Did herders/horde people get constipation from not eating any vegetables or fiber?

If we take Mongolia as an example, the traditional diet during the summer months consists mostly of milk products. Not sure if that counts as carnivore. Meat is mostly consumed during winter. The more ...
Jan's user avatar
  • 9,216
1 vote

Why did slave dealers and buyers in the Antebellum South especially value enslaved persons with "good teeth" and "good front teeth"?

Teeth have always been considered to be a sign of good health. This is partially for good reasons, and partially for reasons not really confirmed by medicine. Slaves' teeth were checked by slave ...
totalMongot's user avatar
  • 6,800

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