Skin creams and salves

Monday, January 16, 2012

Poetic license, perhaps...

"Tumidum Guttur" in Switzerland 164 Years Ago.

—To physicians traveling in Switzerland, a letter written by the poet, Thomas Gray (1716-1771) will prove of interest. Oliver Goldsmith, the thriftless, erratic, ill-disciplined Roscommon youth, and patientless graduate in medicine of the Dublin University, took at an early period of his career a prolonged flute-playing tour around and through the greater part of Western Europe. Like a true-born Hibernian genius, he was penniless, ragged, and partially—or wholly—barefoot throughout the prolonged period of his pilgrimage. But he saw what was worth observing, and he described some of the items as nobody else could. One of his published comments refers to the epidemic prevalence of thyroid tumors and cretinism in some of the Alpine valleys. Indeed, in certain Swiss districts when a young woman approached the marriageable age she was obliged—in the rare cases in which Nature's usual process had failed to supply her with the recognized proportion of thyroid development—to wear a false goiter in order to give herself a chance of the usual settlement in life. 

source: American Medicine, Volume 6, 1903

~ since it was common for goiters to appear at puberty, a goiter could certainly signify sexual maturation...

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