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rsowa
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Joined: 09 Nov 2013
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Location: Dundee, Michigan, USA

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Post Posted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 6:27 pm      Post subject: Causes of Death
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While not all that important in our genealogy research, it is still interesting to learn how our ancestors died. In my case, several epidemics of typhus, diphtheria and smallpox killed half the children of my ancestral families. I sometimes wonder if that might have been some of the incentive for them to emigrate.

To make sense out of the various causes of death in parish registers, I ran across this website that is "Latin/English Glossary of Causes of Death and other Archaic Medical Terms". While they also sell a CD and hard copy book, the listings on the web page include most of what I have needed, at least in Latin.

http://www.antiquusmorbus.com/Latin/Latin.htm

Richard
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MDuplaga
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Joined: 21 Jun 2010
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Post Posted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 2:43 am      Post subject:
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Richard,

Thanks for posting the link-it is the most complete list I have come across. I printed it out for future reference!

MaryAnne
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MAKOVA
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Joined: 17 Mar 2013
Replies: 56

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Post Posted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 4:12 pm      Post subject: cause of death
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Hello Richard,

Thank you for posting the list of death causes. I have found a few that are not on that list and hope maybe you have some idea. The one I found used the most about 1800 is Pustula. Then there is .morbo ignato,and morbo natural as well as ordinaria. The last two seem like they would mean the same thing but I have seen the morbo natural as the cause of death for a 2 year old. Any thoughts?

Marie
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rsowa
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Joined: 09 Nov 2013
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Location: Dundee, Michigan, USA

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Post Posted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 4:57 pm      Post subject:
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Marie...gosh, I wish I could help you. I'm nowhere near knowledgeable to even try. I posted the link above because it did help me in a couple of cases. The one who is probably most likely to know the answer is dnowicki. He does the Latin translations. The best way to get it proper translation would be to post an image of the words (or the whole parish register page) in the Latin translation thread. Sometimes the writing in a single entry is hard to read, but with several of the same causes on the same page, it makes it easier.

I did a quick Google translate for your morbo ignato (ignatus?) and got "unknown disease" and ordinaria translates to "ordinary". In other words, they probably had no idea what they died from. The word "pustula" means blister...so they poor guy died of blisters? Doesn't sound right, but it might be that another disease caused blisters as a symptom...smallpox?

Sorry, but that's about it for my feeble brain Smile
Richard
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dnowicki
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Joined: 28 Dec 2011
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Location: Michigan City, Indiana

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Post Posted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 5:45 pm      Post subject:
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Marie & Richard,

Pustula can mean a blister but as a cause of death it means "pox" which can indicate smallpox which as a cause of a number of deaths in a short time would indicate that there was a smallpox epidemic but it sometimes also refers to other forms of pox like chickenpox .

Morbus means disease and morbo ignoto is the Ablative Case of that word---actually what grammarians refer to as "Ablative of Cause"---and is best translated "from an unknown disease". Morbo naturale means the person died from natural causes and "ordinaria" in the full form would be morte ordinaria or an ordinary death or what we would call a death from natural causes. Morbo ignoto, morbo naturale, etc. are catch all categories used when the actual cause of death was not known but there was no foul play involved. As I mentioned to Richard previously, sometimes the cause of death in Latin records will be entered in Polish. The priest was not a physician and so sometimes he did not know the correct Latin for one or another disease so he simply entered the name of the disease with which he was familiar---the Polish name.

Dave


Last edited by dnowicki on Tue Nov 25, 2014 9:01 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Elzbieta Porteneuve
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Joined: 09 Nov 2012
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Post Posted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 5:57 pm      Post subject:
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Marie,
Richard,
Dave,

The "natural" death is an opposite to a "violent" one (a result of trauma, with all possible meanings).

Today in Poland both terms are used in forensic medicine, with the above meaning.
The "natural" is either lesions or involution, and is subdivided into sudden death (for example, sudden cardiac death) and slow death (due to debilitating diseases).

Best,
Elzbieta
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Kim K



Joined: 21 Oct 2018
Replies: 33

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Post Posted: Fri May 10, 2019 2:10 pm      Post subject:
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This intriguing website no longer seems to be working. Are there any other good lists out there? Or can someone share the old list?

Dzięki,
Kim
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MikeHNiemczyk



Joined: 06 Sep 2017
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Location: New York, USA

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Post Posted: Sat Jun 01, 2019 7:31 am      Post subject: "Hechtycus" - Latin cause of death
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I second Kim's request - the website that garnered so much praise here doesn't seem to open anymore. Does anybody on this site know the meaning of "Hechtycus” as a cause of death (1826)?

Regards,
Michael Niemczyk
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dnowicki
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Post Posted: Sun Jan 17, 2021 10:52 pm      Post subject: Re: "Hechtycus" - Latin cause of death
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MikeHNiemczyk wrote:
I second Kim's request - the website that garnered so much praise here doesn't seem to open anymore. Does anybody on this site know the meaning of "Hechtycus” as a cause of death (1826)?

Regards,
Michael Niemczyk


Hi Kim & Michael,

I recalled Kim’s post regarding Rudy’s List of Archaic Medical Terms and discovered that it still exists, but not in its earlier form. From what I read, the author (Rudy) took down his original list and replaced it with a new version. The new version is available as a downloadable PDF doc. It was deemed a safe download by Norton. Here is the link to the doc: https://docplayer.net/103233917-Rudy-s-list-of-archaic-medical-terms.html The new list no longer contains handwritten examples of the terms but contains a much expanded list of terms in English as well as other languages including Latin and Polish. The emphasis is on English terms but the Latin section is good and, as far as I can recall, contains all the Latin terms which were found in the previous version. The Polish section is rather short. All in all, the list would be a valuable addition to one’s genealogy toolbox.

Michael, The word you transcribed, hechtycus, is not found on Rudy’s List. I would say that the more common spelling would be “hecticus” or “hethicus” which appear among the Latin words used in Poland during the Middle Ages in the work in progress—Lexicon Mediae et Infimae Latinitatis Polonorum. Granted that they do not appear as your transcribed word but there are convincing linguistic reasons to assert that they are actually the same word. The use of “y” in place of the more common “I” can be explained by the use of “y” in the Latin alphabet. “Y” was a late addition (c. 50 BCE) and was introduced to symbolize the Greek letter upsilon and was found in few Latin words. The use of “h” and the lack of its use is closely tied to Latin phonics. “H” is an aspirate (sometimes called a fricative) and is considered voiceless. It is not pronounced as a distinct letter, but, as the name suggests, adds a roughness or friction to its companion letter—all of which varies with the clarity of diction. The Roman poet Martial (1st Century of the Common Era) mocks the improper use of the aspirate (h) among those of new money who had more money than linguistic sophistication—money can’t buy class and does not change one’s level of education and sophistication. This is not to say that the priest was not well educated. It is just that “h” is a slippery letter. Anyway, hecticus (hechtycus) means “consumption” or “tuberculosis” (Polish: suchoty or gruźlica) and, in my opinion, that is the meaning of the word about which you asked.

I hope this is helpful to you both.

Dave
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Kim K



Joined: 21 Oct 2018
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Post Posted: Wed Jan 27, 2021 12:17 am      Post subject: Re: "Hechtycus" - Latin cause of death
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dnowicki wrote:


Hi Kim & Michael,
The new version is available as a downloadable PDF doc. It was deemed a safe download by Norton. Here is the link to the doc: https://docplayer.net/103233917-Rudy-s-list-of-archaic-medical-terms.html The new list no longer contains handwritten examples of the terms but contains a much expanded list of terms in English as well as other languages including Latin and Polish.

I hope this is helpful to you both.

Dave


The direct download link had a network error but the share option somehow still gave a pdf copy in the zip file after conversion to text.

I'm not a native speaker but it looks like most of the Polish words are still current, minus the diacritics. It'll be nice to have a compact list in one spot though to skim against poor handwriting and brain fog---not often that one thinks about measles or smallpox, thankfully.

And Latin is my nemesis, that will probably come in handy.

Thank you again!
Kim
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Richard Kuzniak



Joined: 04 Jul 2021
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Location: Toronto, Canada

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Post Posted: Wed Jul 07, 2021 10:25 pm      Post subject:
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I clicked the link but got Japanese text?!? Shocked
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TedMack



Joined: 12 Jun 2020
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Location: Sydney, Australia

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Post Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2021 12:48 am      Post subject: Causes of Death
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Richard Kuzniak wrote:
I clicked the link but got Japanese text?!? Shocked


Richard worked for me?
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dnowicki
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Joined: 28 Dec 2011
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Location: Michigan City, Indiana

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Post Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2021 5:44 am      Post subject: Re: Causes of Death
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TedMack wrote:
Richard Kuzniak wrote:
I clicked the link but got Japanese text?!? Shocked


Richard worked for me?


Hi Ted & Richard,

Since we all know that web pages sometimes disappear and that links don’t always work I downloaded and saved the PDF of Rudy’s List. The Japanese (or Chinese) version is, I believe, someone’s translation/transcription of the original incarnation of Rudy’s list minus the handwritten examples. Anyway, although the link should still work, here is the PDF. It is safe to download and use.

Caveat: Keep in mind that Rudy’s List, useful as it is, does not contain every archaic cause of death in Latin or in Polish or in English for that matter.

Dave



Rudy's List of Archaic Medical Terms.pdf
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 Filename:  Rudy's List of Archaic Medical Terms.pdf
 Filesize:  1.42 MB
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TedMack



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Post Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2021 7:25 am      Post subject: Re: Causes of Death
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dnowicki wrote:
TedMack wrote:
Richard Kuzniak wrote:
I clicked the link but got Japanese text?!? Shocked


Richard worked for me?


Hi Ted & Richard,

Since we all know that web pages sometimes disappear and that links don’t always work I downloaded and saved the PDF of Rudy’s List. The Japanese (or Chinese) version is, I believe, someone’s translation/transcription of the original incarnation of Rudy’s list minus the handwritten examples. Anyway, although the link should still work, here is the PDF. It is safe to download and use.

Caveat: Keep in mind that Rudy’s List, useful as it is, does not contain every archaic cause of death in Latin or in Polish or in English for that matter.

Dave


Thanks Dave - wasn't sure how to download a copy - let's see if this works - OK it worked but I only saved the first 2 pages, I have replaced it with your download. Disregard my attached download.



ARCHAIC MEDICAL TERMS.pdf
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 Filename:  ARCHAIC MEDICAL TERMS.pdf
 Filesize:  224.09 KB
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