Tag Archives: 18th Century
L0034625 A young woman comes to visit a sick young man in hope that
Credit: Wellcome Library, London. Wellcome Images
Detail: A young woman comes to visit a sick man in the hope that her love will cure him, surrounded by relatives. Colour lithograph by LaFosse after P.E.Destouches.
The lettering ("L'amour médicin") may allude to Molière's play of that title first performed at Versailles for Louis XIV and his court on 15 September 1665, although the play describes a man curing a love-sick young woman, not the reverse as shown here
c.1850-79 By: Paul-Emile Destouchesafter: Jean-Baptiste Adolphe LafossePublished:  - 
Printed: c.1850-79

Copyrighted work available under Creative Commons Attribution only licence CC BY 4.0 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Catarrh by any Other Name: Influenza is Back (1790)

The influenza has again made its appearance in this city.

A medical correspondent has observed several mistakes in the accounts published in our papers, on the subject of this disease, and begs leave to lay before the public, for the benefit of his countrymen, the following short account of it, taken from notes of lectures delivered by Dr. Rush, the professor of the theory and practice of medicine in the college of Philadelphia, last winter.

The Doctor denied that the Influenza was produced by any sensible or unwholesome quality in the air; but allowed, that it was a good deal influenced, as to its violence and many of its symptoms, by the heat, cold, moisture, dryness and sudden vicissitudes of the weather. — He added, that it was not a new disease; that it had only acquired a new name; that it had been known in the early ages of physic by the name of the catarrhal fever , and had been described, very accurately, by Dr. Cullen, and other writers, by the name of Catarrh. It differs from what is commonly called a cold, in being produced wholly by contagion. The origin of this contagion is involved in as much obscurity as the origin of that of the measles and small-pox.

The Pennsylvania Gazette was one of the United States’ most prominent newspapers from 1728—before the time period of the American Revolution—until 1800. Published in Philadelphia from 1728 through 1800, The Pennsylvania Gazette is considered The New York Times of the 18th century.

Run-Away from the Subscriber-Blur

Run-Away from the Subscriber…

Freedom on the Move is a database of fugitives from North American slavery. With the advent of newspapers in the American colonies, enslavers posted “runaway ads” to try to locate fugitives. Additionally, jailers posted ads describing people they had apprehended in search of the enslavers who claimed the fugitives as property.

Many of these ads, in their original context, are available to Accessible Archives subscribers in the 18th century newspapers of Pennsylvania and South Carolina.

This ad is particularly moving because it involves what sounds like a family and at least some of the group had lived as free people for a time before being re-enslaved.

Fifty Pounds Reward

The South-Carolina Gazette, April 3, 1775

The South-Carolina Gazette, April 3, 1775

(The South-Carolina Gazette, April 3, 1775) RUN-AWAY from the Subscriber at Herring’s Bluff, in St. Matthew’s Parish, the Five following NEGROES,viz.

A Negro Fellow named July; a Wench named Kate (Wife of July). July is a slim made Fellow, pitted with the smallpox. Kate is a stout black Wench, with remarkable large Breasts. Sophia, a slim made Girl about thirteen Years of Age. Charles, a Boy about five Years of Age, and one Girl about eighteen Months old.

The above Negroes were purchased by me from the Rev. Mr. Tonge, who lived at or near Dorchester. When I purchased them, they had been out 18 Months, and passed for free Negroes in the back Parts of this Province. July is a sensible artful Fellow, and may again attempt to pass for a free Negro, as he has formerly done. Any Person apprehending the said Negroes, and delivering them up to any of the Country Goals, or to the Warden of the Workhouse in Charles-Town, shall receive a Reward of Fifty Pounds, with all reasonable Charges.

-Feb. 1, 1775. WILLIAM FLUD.

N. B. It is suspected that they will go towards North Carolina. If the said Fellow July should be catched and carried to any of the Country Goals, he must be put in Irons, as he will strive to make his Escape.

Essay on Human Life and Happiness - April 5, 1774

Essay on Human Life and Happiness

This essay ran in The South Carolina Gazette & Country Journal.  This publication was heavily pro-American and nearly always included scandalous stories of European royalty. While it tended to be “stuffy,” it was the only paper to discuss citizens who would not be considered among the elite in society.

“What is life but a circulation of little mean actions? We lie down and rise again, dress and undress, feed and wax hungry, work or play, and are weary, and then we lie down again, and the circle returns. We spend the day in trifles, and, when the night comes, we throw ourselves into the bed of folly, amongst dreams and broken thought, and wild imaginations. Our reason lies asleep by us, and we are, for the time, as arrant brutes as those that sleep in the stalls or in a field. Are not the capacities of man higher than these? And ought not his ambition and expectations to be greater? Let us be adventurers for another world! It is at least a fair and noble chance, and there is nothing in this worth our thoughts, or our passions, If we should be disappointed, we are still no worse than the rest of our fellow mortals, and if we succeed in our expectations, we are eternally happy.” –Thomas Burnet (1635-1715)

No possession or enjoyment, within the round of mortal affairs, is commensurate to the desires, or adequate to the capacities of the mind. The most envied condition has its abatements, the happiest conjuncture of fortune leaves behind it many wishes; and after the highest gratifications, the mind is carried forward in pursuit of new ones ad infinitum . The love of virtue, of one’s friends and country, the generous sympathy with mankind, and the heroic zeal of doing good, which are all so natural to great and noble minds, (and some traces of which are found even in the lowest) are seldom united with proportioned means or opportunities of exercising them; so that the moral spring, the noble energies and impulses of the mind, can hardly find proper scope, even in the most fortunate condition; but are much depressed in some, and almost entirely restrained in others, in the generality, by the numerous clogs of an indigent, sickly or embarrassed life.


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