Plague Doctors

The plague of the seventeenth century swept across Europe. At the time, the air was considered as the carrier of the virus. At that time plague, doctors used a strange suit to protect themselves from the air-carrying pathogens. This dress is made of leather or waxed canvas covering from head to toe. Waxed canvas was used instead of tanned leather as a Solution for economic problems in some areas.

Headgear

Headgear

Instead of the light blue headgear currently used by health workers, a wide-brimmed leather hat was used at the time. It was fastened to the head by a leather strap.

Face mask

Face mask

Today we use high-quality laboratory masks to prevent germs from being transmitted through the nose and mouth but at that time a face mask made of tanned leather. Its eyes were covered with glass.

The highlight of this face mask was the area around the nose and mouth, made of tanned leather in the shape of a bird’s beak. There also were two small holes made for breathing. On the other hand, this beak was filled with fragrant spices, dried flowers, and herbs. The reason for this was the belief that the air filled with pathogens would be clean when they passed through this part of the beak. Another reason was to eliminate the stench emanating from the bodies of thousands who had died from the disease.

Shirt and coat

Shirt and coat

The old plague doctors’ suit was a leather shirt and jacket. The leather shirt had to be pulled tight under the pants to minimize the impact of bad air on the body. The coat was always a dark one to hide blood stains and dust. The coat was hung from the shoulder to the ankle and couldn’t be opened from the front.

The Gloves

At that time, leather gloves were used instead of the disposable rubber gloves used today. Every day the doctor had to check if there were any holes in his gloves.

The Rod

The Rod

The wooden Rod allowed doctors to examine their patients from a safe distance. With that, he was also able to turn the patient and move his body clothes. This also helped to prevent patients from getting too close at times. The length of the rod varied from country to country, but it has always been made of wood.

Pants

The trousers were made of wax-covered canvas and they were tied to the boots to prevent air from entering. They were also tied with a strap that could hold the equipment needed.

Footwear

Footwear

Leather high boots were used by the Plague Doctors.

This suit, used by doctors during the plague, was invented in 1619 by the French physician Charles de Lorme. The masked man with a beak was seen near a house in Europe during this era when thousands of people were killed was considered as a symbol of death.

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