[LMB] OT: AKICOTL: Hawai'ian souvenirs

Ed Burkhead ed at edburkhead.com
Sun Nov 8 17:02:28 GMT 2009

Claire wrote:
> You could exploit some natives and give them syphilis, 
> but I don't suppose that would be very festive.

Actually, evidence seems to show that the chain went the other way.

Exploit the natives and catch syphilis from them.  (Syphilis was present
all over the new world before Columbus's voyages.)

The virulent outbreaks of syphilis in the old world seem to stem from
the return of the first explorers to the new world.  Documentary
evidence has been cited linking the outbreak of the new, virulent
disease in Naples with the return of crewmen from Columbus's voyages in

Whether there was any related disease already present in the old world
is debated but it wasn't the virulent sort-of-pandemic that resulted
from bringing syphilis back from the new world.


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