Posted by SuzanneR on September 03, 1998 at 16:09:57:
In response to I'd be very interested, written by Marie-Bernadette on September 03, 1998 at 10:36:27
] This is something that I've been wondering about for a while. Just what did they know about germs and the spread of disease during the Regency? Did they have the concept that washing themselves as well as clothes, dishes, &c. could help prevent infections and illness?
I don't think they really understood the connection until later in the century.
I recall reading about surgeons wearing blood and pus encrusted coats with no thought of germs. Also, while they might wash their instruments, they didn't know about sterilizing them until Lister introduced antiseptic surgery in the mid 19th century. I can hunt up specific sources and more details if anyone is interested.
On our last trip to England we toured the Old Operating Theatre of St. Thomas' Hospital in Southwark. What a fascinating place! Somewhere I have the guide...
But for now, this is all off the top of my head.
P.S. Wasn't childbed fever caused by unsterile methods of delivery?
- germs P. Bingham 20:31:07 9/03/98 (0)
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