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Written by gianni
(4/1/2012 10:57 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, I had forgotten . . ., penned by Mary Anne
... childbirth has almost always been a fairly low-risk event. See the Wikipedia article
The serious risk of childbed fever didn't occur until after Austen's death, when it became fashionable among doctors and medical students to dissect cadavers, then come to the obstetrics facilities without washing their hands.
The incidence of children's mothers dying in childbirth has always been far greater in fantastical novels than in real life. But then, so have other horrid events :-).
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