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Happy Halloween! Today we’re going to learn about one thing leading to another …
The Daily Rabbit Hole: A timelapse of every earthquake and tsunami in the last 120 years.
“as time progressed, more and more seismographs were deployed and smaller and smaller earthquakes could be recorded”
Okay thank goodness for the video details because for a second there I thought it was increasing with such frequency that we were in serious trouble.
A couple of weeks ago we discussed The Great Fear and how it may have been related to moldy rye. Of course, that isn’t the only event in history that science may have later been able to pin on something the people of the time would have known nothing about.
The English Sweating Sickness produced five separate epidemics throughout the 15th and 16th centuries, spooking mostly … wealthy men. The odd target of the oft-reported disease led researchers to dig a bit deeper.
This disease actually resulted in the death of Prince Arthur, who was due to inherit the throne, which caused the world to inherit King Henry the VIII. If you’re unfamiliar with his reign, all you need to really know is that this accidental King believed strongly in the “divine rights” of Kings. Responsible for separating the Church of England from Papal authority, he was constantly at war and spending the state’s war chest only to refill it with the church’s money. Was he really big on reformation? Or was he merely conveniently reacting to his money circumstances?
At any rate, I digress …
The ‘Wait, What?’ Vortex: On November 3rd, 2002 there was a car wreck that included 216 vehicles.
“There were no fatalities”
I have a ton of questions about the density of this fog that set off this pileup of vehicles. Also - 41 injuries but most of them were bikers? Again … how dense was this fog?
The English Sweating Sickness was a real life, “wait, what?” moment for historians. As we’ve learned more about how diseases work, it was odd that this one seemed to devastate affluent males significantly more than others. One potential culprit? Anthrax.
In the bioterrorist attacks of 2001, one could easily align the symptoms of the 22 people who contracted the infectious disease, a sudden onset of copious sweating and exhaustion, with those of the Sweating Sickness of the 1400s and 1500s. So much so that some researchers postulate that the disease might have gotten into the wool supply for the elites’ clothing since it is normal to find it in animals, but not so much passing from human to human.
All and all, there is no firm conclusion as to what the disease actually was. It is different enough from the flu for us to look elsewhere for answers. However, it is also entirely possible that we only have it recorded as impacting high-ranking men of society because those cases would have been much more likely to be recorded.
Sometimes our “wait, what?” moments lead to an interesting bit of research or informational gathering, but don’t necessarily net us an answer. One thing leads to the next, but may eventually lead to nothing.
C’est la vie.
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