Tag: venereal disease

“The Unreasonable Indulgence of That Appetite”: Cancer as a Venereal Disease in the Nineteenth Century

Agnes Arnold-Forster In 1904 a rank and file clinician, A. T. Brand, narrated an incident in which, “a man presented himself…suffering from cancer of the…penis.” On further analysis, the tumour was “found to consist, not of penile tissue, but of uterine cervical elements.” It was then discovered, “the the man’s […]

Moral Panic and Syphilis in Jamaica

Jill Briggs In 1934 Jamaica was gripped by a moral panic. According to a well-publicized British naval report, the island was “rife” with venereal diseases, particularly syphilis. Some venereal disease experts speculated that infection rates topped eighty percent of the population and included children as young as eight. The root […]

“She was both Poxt and Clapt together”: Confessions of Sexual Secrets in Eighteenth-Century Venereal Cases

“She was both Poxt and Clapt together”: Confessions of Sexual Secrets in Eighteenth-Century Venereal Cases

Olivia Weisser Furtive trysts. Regretful dalliances. Fleeting affairs. Sexual secrets were nothing new in the 1700s, but confessing them to a doctor became surprisingly common in published medical cases of venereal disease. In one instance, a woman consulted a surgeon for a common reproductive ailment known as “the whites.” She […]