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New Name, Ye Same Olde Ailment

By Beth Decarbo

Wall Street Journal, May 4, 2012

In the children's book "Anne of Green Gables," nosy neighbor Rachel Lynde had been confined to her house with an "attack of grippe."

In "Wuthering Heights," Catherine Earnshaw Linton develops "brain fever" and dies. Classic literature is loaded with archaic diseases. Here's a list of some old-fashioned ailments and their modern equivalents with some help from Arlene Shaner, the reference librarian for historical collections at The New York Academy of Medicine. See if you can match them up.

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