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Vampires and rabies: What's the link?
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Author: Tim Newman
Publication Date: May 16, 2018
Website: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321780.php

At first, there appears to be little to link a mythical blood-sucking beast and a serious medical condition. However, as we shall see, the two could be very much entwined.
Vampire in a dark room
Where did the vampire myth begin?
Vampires are so entrenched in our psyche that there's probably not one adult in the whole of the Western world that doesn't know who Dracula is.

There is something about these nocturnal blood-crazed characters that captivates our imaginations. But where did the legend come from?

According to some researchers, the origin of the vampire myth could be rooted in a very real menace: rabies.

Rabies is a deadly virus that is transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected animal. Globally, it kills an estimated 59,000 people each year — that equates to almost one death every 9 minutes. Initial symptoms are only flu-like, but once they appear, rabies is almost always fatal.

Creatures that carry the virus include skunks, dogs, coyotes, foxes, and, you've guessed it, vampire bats — but that's not the connection with mythical vampires that we are discussing today.

The birth of vampirism?
In the 1700s, vampires were not just legends; as far as normal folk were concerned, vampires were a genuine worry. As Voltaire said, "Vampires were the sole matter of conversation between 1730 and 1735."

And, it just so happens that there was a rabies epidemic in Hungary in the 1720s — the very time and place where the vampire legend appears to have taken root. But the similarities run deeper still.


Date Added: May 20, 2018
Added By: AbsintheandBlood
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