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Geneeskundeboek-Opmaak Binnenwerk-ENG.indd

22 The plague, the scourge of God. Ttown was severely disrupted every time; many people gathered, such as churches andOut of fear of infection the pest masters and theirassistants were forbidden to go to places wherehe plague caused havoc in Maastrichtmostly between 1470 and 1670. Life in the indeed the mere news of an outbreak had a markets. Houses where plague sufferers lived were paralysing effect. Immediate removal of patients marked by white strips of wood on the front door. from society was the first priority. A ‘plague Windows and doors had to be kept shut. If this master’, usually a medicinae doctor, was in charge order was violated, a town messenger threw a claim of the treatment and care of the patients, who for three gold guilders into the house. Well into the came from all classes of the population. Wealthy nineteenth century it was generally assumed that people had to pay for treatment but care was free infectious diseases were caused by bad air. of charge for the poor. The plague master and his Consequently, when a plague epidemic struck, assistant, usually religious men, had to carry a people were quick to clean the streets, gutters and white staff as identification and warning. They had pavements and burn barrels of tar and other fires to to arrange for payment by rich patients and draw dispel the contagious air. Beds, bed clothes and up wills, since patients usually had not long to live. clothes of the deceased were burned the night


Geneeskundeboek-Opmaak Binnenwerk-ENG.indd
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