About the Athenian epidemic of the years 430-426 BC

Pediculus humanus (Image: Daniel J. Drew, Creative Commons CCO 1.0)

Since we are quarantined because of the pandemic caused by coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and although this publication does not refer to the Greek Archaeology of the Iberian Peninsula, we would like to highlight this article, published last year, by Dr. María del Pino Carreño, titled “War and plague in Athens. Review of the possible origin of the Athenian epidemic of 430-426 BC “, appears in the number 71-1 (2019) of Asclepio. Revista de Historia de la Medicina y de la Ciencia of the CSIC. This article is a research work of great interest that analyses the various theories made in effort to identify the disease described by Thucydides in his second book of History of the Peloponnesian War. This illness devastated the city of Athens through several outbreaks between 430 and 426 BC. The author concludes that the epidemic was probably caused by smallpox virus (now eradicated) or by endemic typhus, transmitted by the louse (pediculus humanus). Despite the death toll, the Athenian polis recovered, and life in the city continued uninterrupted until today. The Iberia Graeca Centre would like to extend its sympathy and support to all of you. Please take care!

 

You can find the download link of the article below: http://asclepio.revistas.csic.es/index.php/asclepio/article/view/806

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