What is the French pox?

Syphilis (also known as ‘The French Pox’) landed on England’s shores in about 1493. The term ‘French Pox’ was derived from the belief that the disease originally travelled from the New World and through France before arriving in England’s green and pleasant land.

What does French pox mean?

noun. old-fashioned, sometimes offensive. a chronic infectious disease, caused by a spirochete, Treponema pallidum, usually venereal in origin but often congenital, and affecting almost any organ or tissue in the body, especially the genitals, skin, mucous membranes, aorta, brain, liver, bones, and nerves; syphilis.

Why was syphilis called the French disease?

Because it was spread by returning French troops, the disease was known as “French disease”, and it was not until 1530 that the term “syphilis” was first applied by the Italian physician and poet Girolamo Fracastoro.

What is the great pox?

The ‘Great Pox’, syphilis, is a systemic disease with many clinical manifestations caused by the spirochaete Treponema pallidum. It is usually transmitted sexually but congenital infections can occur and, in certain parts of the world, endemic nonvenereal disease due to T. pallidum exists.

What did the French call the French disease?

The French called it the Italian disease. Arabs called it the Christian disease.

What animal did syphilis come from?

Syphilis also came to humans from cattle or sheep many centuries ago, possibly sexually”. The most recent and deadliest STI to have crossed the barrier separating humans and animals has been HIV, which humans got from the simian version of the virus in chimpanzees.

What animal did gonorrhea come from?

“We know, for example, that gonorrhea came from cattle to humans. Syphilis also came to humans from cattle or sheep many centuries ago, possibly sexually.” The most recent, as well as the deadliest, STD to migrate to humans is HIV, which hunters acquired from the blood of chimpanzees, says Aguirre.

Where did syphilis come from originally?

Around 3000 BC the sexually transmitted syphilis emerged from endemic syphilis in South-Western Asia, due to lower temperatures of the post-glacial era and spread to Europe and the rest of the world.

How did syphilis start in humans?

There is still debate over the origin of syphilis and how it spread to different parts of the world. The most well-supported hypothesis, the Columbian Hypothesis, states that Columbus’ seamen, who first arrived in the Americas in 1492, brought the disease back to Europe following exploration of the Americas.

Did Lucrezia Borgia have syphilis?

Syphilis affected many illustrious personages in the 15th and 16th centu- ry, such as the Kings of France, Charles VIII and Francis I; the popes Alexander VI, Julius II and Leo X; Cesare and Lucrezia Borgia, Erasmus of Rotterdam and Benvenutto Cellini, who, among oth- ers, survived syphilis without consequences1.

Which pope had a child with his daughter?

And the old man licking his lips at the antics of the call-girls was none other than the Pope himself, Alexander VI, formerly known as Rodrigo Borgia. It is said that his daughter Lucrezia and his son Cesare were also there, enjoying the spectacle.

Was the Borgia pope poisoned?

There is no evidence that the Borgias resorted to poisoning, judicial murder, or extortion to fund their schemes and the defense of the Papal States.

What STD did Juan Borgia have?


Juan boasts to his father that his wife is pregnant with a son. In private, however, he suffers from an unspecified venereal disease (most probably syphilis), which his physician instructs him to medicate with mercury and opium; Juan soon becomes addicted to the latter, frequently visiting a Muslim-owned opium den.

Did Rodrigo Borgia have syphilis?

He was considered the handsomest man in Italy, there were inevitably rumours of incest with his sister Lucrezia and he had syphilis from his early twenties.

When did Cesare Borgia get syphilis?

History doesn’t recount who gave Cesare Borgia syphilis, but we do know when and where he got it. In the summer of 1497, he was a 22-year-old cardinal, sent as papal legate by his father, Pope Alexander VI, to crown the king of Naples and broker a royal marriage for his sister, Lucrezia.