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"The figure of a fearful comet", from Dr. Ambroise Pare's 'Surgery', gives a subjective impression of the comet of 16645. Swords, daggers, coffins, and men's heads were supposed to be omens of plague, and plague did indeed break out in London in June of 1665, within 3 months of the comet's visit. Bubonic plague a serious, sometimes fatal, infection with the bacterial toxin Yersinia pestis, transmitted by fleas from infected rodents and characterized by high fever, weakness, and the formation of buboes, especially in the groin and armpits. The comet of 1665 was said to have been responsible for the Black Plague that killed 90 thousand people in London.
March 13th, 2013
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