Historiography

Read e-book online The Germ of an Idea: Contagionism, Religion, and Society in PDF

By Margaret DeLacy

ISBN-10: 1137575298

ISBN-13: 9781137575296

ISBN-10: 1349575585

ISBN-13: 9781349575589

Contagionism is an outdated concept, yet received new lifestyles in recovery Britain. Germ of an idea considers British contagionism in its spiritual, social, political context from the nice Plague of London to the adoption of smallpox inoculation. It exhibits how principles approximately contagion replaced medication and the knowledge of acute illnesses.

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Additional resources for The Germ of an Idea: Contagionism, Religion, and Society in Britain, 1660–1730

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37 The Tories favored James’s claim to the crown and emphasized the importance of nonresistance to an anointed monarch, however detested. The Whigs favored greater indulgence toward the Dissenters and tried to secure a Protestant succession to the throne. ”38 Their interest in expanding religious toleration was lukewarm at best. 41 Dissenters with foreign medical degrees could only become Licentiates, allowed to practice in London at the discretion of the College. Anglicans with foreign degrees could either become Licentiates or “incorporate” their foreign degrees in England and become eligible for Fellowship.

In the first, normal putrefaction, the particles lost their usual combination of heat and moisture, broke down, and became smelly and offensive. In the second, instead of merely disassociating, the heat and moisture were regenerated into a new substance, like vinegar, and did not become disagreeable. This two-stage process explained how some diseases, such as rabies, could lie hidden for some time. The seeds of disease could be spontaneously generated either in the atmosphere or in the body when terrestrial or celestial influences changed the heat and moisture of the air; the air itself served only as a medium for transporting them.

18 There were only one or two elements: water and (possibly) air. Matter was simply water, unformed and homogenous. 19 Within each seed was an immaterial guiding principle or Archeus. Through a process of fermentation, these seeds reorganized matter into discrete objects and substances: animal, vegetable, and mineral. 22 Like Paracelsus, Helmont believed that diseases were individual entities: one disease could not transmute into another. 23 Diseases could be classified into species according to their cause, and they could reproduce and cause the same species of disease in another person.

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The Germ of an Idea: Contagionism, Religion, and Society in Britain, 1660–1730 by Margaret DeLacy


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