Tag Archives | plagues

Giant Hornets Kill 42 People In China

giant hornets

The New York Times reports:

Swarms of giant hornets have killed 42 people in Shaanxi Province and injured more than 1,600 in recent months, according to Xinhua, the official news agency. Government officials have yet to figure out why their attacks have been so widespread and deadly.

Officials said on Thursday that emergency response teams were working to locate and destroy the nests of Asian giant hornets, the species involved in the attacks. Their venom is highly toxic and can cause shock and renal failure.

Hornet attacks have been reported elsewhere in China as well. Last month, a swarm attacked a primary school in the Guangxi Autonomous Region in southern China, injuring 30 people, including 23 children.

Up to two inches long, the brown and gold Asian giant, or Vespa mandarinia, is the world’s largest hornet species.

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The Dancing Plague Of 1518

dancing plagueDid you know that dance memes occurred in the Dark Ages? Wikipedia on the supreme horror of the Dancing Plague of 1518:

The Dancing Plague (or Dance Epidemic) of 1518 was a case of dancing mania that occurred in Strasbourg, Alsace (then part of the Holy Roman Empire) in July 1518. Numerous people took to dancing for days without rest, and, over the period of about one month, some of those affected died of heart attack, stroke, or exhaustion.

The outbreak began when a woman, Frau Troffea, began to dance fervently in a street in Strasbourg. This lasted somewhere between four to six days. Within a week, 34 others had joined, and within a month, there were around 400 dancers. Some of these people eventually died from heart attack, stroke, or exhaustion. Historical documents, including “physician notes, cathedral sermons, local and regional chronicles, and even notes issued by the Strasbourg city council” are clear that the victims danced.

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