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|Scurvy, jaundice, king's-evil...
Written by Line
(6/2/2007 6:09 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Brighton (long), penned by JulieW
I notice that sea bathing was particularly recommended for skin diseases and tuberculosis, according to the sub-title of Dr. Russel's book, and that the original was apparently written in Latin before being translated into English. I've linked a Wikipedia article on scrofula ("the king's evil") which it turns out could be either a skin disease *or* TB(!).
Julie, your post makes me realize that along with the pleasure-seekers who went to Brighton just to enjoy themselves, there must have been a fair number of people in the streets who clearly had something wrong with them, as you can see even today in European spa towns. Of course, I imagine it was fairly easy for Lydia to ignore or overlook them and see only what she wanted to see...
I also noticed that the pictured "bathing dress" left no more skin uncovered, and was no more practical for actually immersing yourself in water, than any other dress of the period. The only difference I can see is that the lady seems to be wearing stockings rather than shoes.
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