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Mayflower, Day by Day - Monday, 15 February [1620]/21

15 Feb 2021 3:37 AM | Soule (Administrator)

At anchor in harbour

Clearing weather.  Many comments to these postings have asked what disease or condition the passengers and crew were suffering.  Accounts are far from specific as to the name or proper treatment for the dreadful sickness engulfing the community. Medical techniques of that day were so primitive that they could have brought more harm than cure to patients unquestionably suffering from improper diet, anxiety, overexertion, and exposure to damp and cold. Bradford ascribed the affliction to "the scurvy and other diseases which this long voyage and their inaccomodate condition had brought upon them." The other diseases could have been pneumonia or ship fever, a form of typhus.

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