TIL about the mysterious worldwide epidemic of Encephalitis lethargica. The disease attacks the brain, leaving some victims in a statue-like condition, speechless and motionless. Between 1915 and 1926, 500,000 dead or incapacitated from it. It disappeared as mysteriously as it came in to the world.

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What I think is extra weird is that many people just died of the disease straight away. But some people were apparently cured and then years later turned into statues. FYI this is the disease from the movie/ book “awakenings”.


“They would be conscious and aware – yet not fully awake; they would sit motionless and speechless all day in their chairs, totally lacking energy, impetus, initiative, motive, appetite, affect or desire; they registered what went on about them without active attention, and with profound indifference. They neither conveyed nor felt the feeling of life; they were as insubstantial as ghosts, and as passive as zombies.” Hits a little too close to home in some parts


The term for “world wide epidemic” is pandemic.


Knew It from Sandman.


I wonder how hard it would be to study victims of this 100 years later.