One of my weirder weaknesses is a fondness for old text and reference books – the older and more outdated the better. This is because nothing – nothing – helps illustrate the advances in science and general knowledge over the last twenty, thirty, fifty, eighty, or hundred years better than seeing the state of knowledge way back when. At the same time, though, it’s shocking how many “old things” have “become new” again – that is, how many recent “new” discoveries were known decades ago, but fell out of favor for whatever reason over time.
I recently picked up a 1913 textbook – intended for students in “intermediate grades”, whatever that means – on “General Hygeine”. Over the next couple days, I’ll be scanning and posting some of the more interesting and/or entertaining bits from this volume, which contains much that is dubious, or, to be charitable, merely outdated.
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