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Gout

disease, arthritis, authors, podagra, terms, greek and term

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GOUT Synonyms.

IN the writings of Hippocrates and Aretwus, gout is known as ap epTrts., a term derived from a joint, and ereCI inflammation. As the foot was the most conspicuous seat of the disease, it was by these early authors frequently called '7wMyini, or roadipa, a derivative of the words (gen. 770/36) and linou, signifying a disease or attack involving the feet. By some of the early Greek authors it was men tioned as 7-Aakit'a from r.obs and (D.ros, denoting and calling attention to the painful condition of the feet during the attacks of the disease.

From the Greek these terms were transferred without change into the Latin. Under the empire we find the terms arthritis and pocla gra in common use. Pliny mentions a morbus arthritis, under which he probably includes rheumatism as well as gout. The writers of the later Greek empire, taking their cue from the word podagra, am plified their terminology by coining such words as chiragra, from xE(p, the hand, and

The disease did not escape the notice of the comic poets, who be stowed upon it various names that lie outside of the pale of science.

Its aristocratic relationship was recognized in the name morbus dominorarn, by which it was known to Latin authors. The modern name goat first appears in its Latin antecedent gutta, a term that was employed by Radulphus, or Rudolph, who wrote in the later years of the thirteenth century. He taught that gout was a disease that was caused by a humor that flowed drop by drop, gattatim, into the joints. Hence the term passed into the different European lan guages, giving us goalie in French; Gicht in German; gotta in Mil iau; gota in Spanish. Other names have also been employed in different countries, by different authors. Among the early Saxon English the disease was called faun or foot-addle, that is, foot-ail.

By the Germans it is known in the popular vocabulary as Gliedersucht, Gichtschuie•zeu, Fussyicht. Among the learned it has been known as podayrica ; podagra arthritis ; artftritis uratica, or urica ; pan arthritis arica: arthrodania podayrica ; cauma podagricum, xab7.w., burning; a•throsia podagra. Latent and irregular forms of the dis ease have been denoted by the terms lithiosis, and litha2mia, derived from a stone, and a% .a, the blood, having reference to the pres ence of lithic or uric acid compounds in the blood -and tissues of the patient who suffered from the imperfectly developed varieties of the disease.

History.

It is impossible to assign a date beyond which gout was unknown. The treatises of Hippocrates describe. the disease in unmistakable language. Upon the monuments of Egypt the gentry of that ancient country are depicted in the enjoyment of liberal vinous potations, with all the accessories that are provocative of arthritis.

We are told (1 Kings xv.) that, about nine hundred years be fore Christ, .Asa, the king of Jerusalem, the great-grandson of Solo mon, died of the gout. From that day to the present tinie, there are few of the monarchs and great men of the earth, who have not felt the twinges of the arch-enemy. To say nothing of Persian and Chinese and Japanese experience in that line, we find in the light literature of Greece and Rome frequent allusions to the over-weighted and irascible victim of podagra, who is vastly amusing to every one but himself.

Even among more serious authors, men of the world, like Seneca, complain of the luxury that had debauched the imperial Romans, so that even the ladies of the court were bald, and fat, and gouty by rea son of the ardor with which they devoted themselves to the worship of Venus and Bacchus. History continually repeats itself; and wherever wealth and leisure abound, gout has embittered the lives of the votaries of pleasure. Nor have they alone been numbered among the victims of the disease. Many • of the most eminent among the in tellectnal leaders of men have been, either as a consequence of their own errors or through hereditary predisposition, made to suffer in common with the princes of fashion and dissipation.

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