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Title: Living and dying in the horrible summer of 1837
Authors: Galea, Joseph (2017)
Keywords: Cholera -- Malta -- History -- 19th century
Epidemics -- Malta -- History -- 19th century
Cholera -- Social aspects -- Malta -- 19th century
Public health -- Malta -- History -- 19th century
Issue Date: 2017
Citation: Galea, J. (2017). Living and dying in the horrible summer of 1837 (Master’s dissertation).
Abstract: Epidemic cholera reached Europe for the first time at the beginning of the nineteenth century. After devastating countries all over Europe, it reached Malta in June 1837 finding a poor and destitute population that was too fragile to withstand its onslaught. It attacked the old and weak inmates of the Ospizio and then spread to every corner of the archipelago. The Government, belatedly appointed Committees of Health to deal with the consequences of the epidemic and cholera hospitals were opened in the cities and villages, directives issued and health workers and priests mobilized. The malady wreaked havoc for 3 months attacking 8785 and killing 4252. Many Maltese doctors feared contagion and would not attend the cholera hospital but others and a few British army and navy doctors did not believe it was contagious and cared for the sick and the dying. Parish priests did their best for their parishioners and the monks (especially the Capuchins) contributed immensely to the spiritual needs of the dying. The population at large was in terror; brother shunned brother, mothers abandoned their sick children and sons and daughters would not go near their sick parents. People died in the streets locked out of their homes. Amid all this horror there were courageous and kind persons who took care of the sick and the dying. This thesis considers the relations and conflicts amongst people; the Government, the people, the doctors and the churchmen. Many people were very poor, deeply religious, illiterate, and uneducated, the few were better off but all had to face the destructing calamity of terror. Their reactions and behaviour vary from fear to fatalism, abandonment to attempts at self-preservation.
Description: M.MALTESE STUD.
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - InsMS - 2017

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