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Methemoglobinemia.
Methemoglobinemia is a blood disorder in which an abnormal amount of methemoglobin — a form of hemoglobin — is produced. Hemoglobin is the molecule in red blood cells that distributes oxygen to the body. Methemoglobin cannot release oxygen.
In methemoglobinemia, the hemoglobin is unable to release oxygen effectively to body tissues, turning people blue.

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Methemoglobinemia.

Methemoglobinemia is a blood disorder in which an abnormal amount of methemoglobin — a form of hemoglobin — is produced. Hemoglobin is the molecule in red blood cells that distributes oxygen to the body. Methemoglobin cannot release oxygen.

In methemoglobinemia, the hemoglobin is unable to release oxygen effectively to body tissues, turning people blue.

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Rat king in the scientific museum Mauritianum Altenburg, Germany:
Rat kings are phenomena said to arise when a number of rats become intertwined at their tails, which become stuck together with blood, dirt, ice, excrement or simply knotted. The animals reputedly grow together while joined at the tails. The numbers of rats that are joined together can vary, but naturally rat kings formed from a larger number of rats are rarer. The phenomenon is particularly associated with Germany, where the majority of instances have been reported. Historically, there are various superstitions surrounding rat kings, and they were often seen as an extremely bad omen, particularly associated with plagues. MORE.
Vile.

theoddmentemporium:

Rat king in the scientific museum Mauritianum Altenburg, Germany:

Rat kings are phenomena said to arise when a number of rats become intertwined at their tails, which become stuck together with blood, dirt, ice, excrement or simply knotted. The animals reputedly grow together while joined at the tails. The numbers of rats that are joined together can vary, but naturally rat kings formed from a larger number of rats are rarer. The phenomenon is particularly associated with Germany, where the majority of instances have been reported. Historically, there are various superstitions surrounding rat kings, and they were often seen as an extremely bad omen, particularly associated with plagues. MORE.

Vile.

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A scold’s bridle, sometimes called “the branks”, as well as “brank’s bridle” was a punishment device used primarily on women, as a form of torture and public humiliation. It was an iron muzzle in an iron framework that enclosed the head. The bridle-bit (or curb-plate) was about 2 inches long and 1 inch broad, projected into the mouth and pressed down on top of the tongue. The “curb-plate” was frequently studded with spikes, so that if the tongue moved, it inflicted pain and made speaking impossible. Wives who were seen as witches, shrews and scolds, were forced to wear a brank’s bridle, which had been locked on the head of the woman and sometimes had a ring and chain attached to it so her husband could parade her around town and the town’s people could scold her and treat her with contempt; at times smearing excrement on her and beating her, sometimes to death.

theoddmentemporium:

scold’s bridle, sometimes called “the branks”, as well as “brank’s bridle” was a punishment device used primarily on women, as a form of torture and public humiliation. It was an iron muzzle in an iron framework that enclosed the head. The bridle-bit (or curb-plate) was about 2 inches long and 1 inch broad, projected into the mouth and pressed down on top of the tongue. The “curb-plate” was frequently studded with spikes, so that if the tongue moved, it inflicted pain and made speaking impossible. Wives who were seen as witches, shrews and scolds, were forced to wear a brank’s bridle, which had been locked on the head of the woman and sometimes had a ring and chain attached to it so her husband could parade her around town and the town’s people could scold her and treat her with contempt; at times smearing excrement on her and beating her, sometimes to death.

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Habsburg Jaw:

Prognathism (also known as Habsburg Jaw) is a term used to describe the positional relationship of the mandible and/ormaxilla to the skeletal base where either of the jaws protrudes beyond a predetermined imaginary line in the coronal plane of the skull. Prognathism is well recorded as a trait of several historical individuals. The most famous case is that of the House of Habsburg, among whom mandibular prognathism was a family trait; indeed, the condition is frequently called “Habsburg Jaw” as a result of its centuries-long association with the family. Among the Habsburgs, the most prominent case of mandibular prognathism is that of Charles II of Spain, who had prognathism so pronounced he could neither speak clearly nor chew as a result of generations of politically motivated inbreeding.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by the frequent use ofconsanguineous marriages, with ultimately disastrous results for their gene pool. Marriages between first cousins, or between uncle and niece, were commonplace in the family. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests that inbreeding directly led to their extinction. The gene pool eventually became so small that the last of the Spanish line Charles II, who was severely disabled by genetic disorders, possessed a genome comparable to that of a child born to a brother and sister, as did his father, likely due to “remoteinbreeding”. The consequence of this and other genetic defects was the War of the Spanish Succession.

Image 1: Charles II of Spain.
Image 2: Felipe IV of Spain. 
Image 3: Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor. 

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On June 23, 1947, Time Magazine reported from Switzerland on what it called the “Miracle Man” – a mysterious 35-year old Dutchman by the name of Mirin Dajo who confounded onlooking scientists, doctors and ordinary spectators when, apparently without any pain or internal injury, he was skewered straight through the chest with a 28-inch fencing foil. The skin on his torso appeared to bulge as the solid steel blade was pushed through by an assistant, but Dajo stayed stoic, unflinching. During the 40s, this living enigma was run through with sharp objects like spears and swords without suffering physical damage or even bleeding. 

Experts then and now seem to agree this was no illusion, but a real sword going through a real body. Dajo maintained that the areas through which the weapons went became ‘lighter’, ‘less physical’ – that there was nothing solid to injure – but a recent BBC TV programme disputes this account. According to magician and Dajo authority, Ali Bongo, Dajo travelled to India and talked to Fakirs – mystics known for piercing their cheeks and skin with knives. There he may have learned a safe way to pass a blade through his body – but how?

According to Dr Jennifer Saw, even such an extreme feat might be biologically possible aided by what are called fistulas, probably the simplest example of which is an ear ring hole: “It’s quite likely that he had perhaps a few centimetres done at a time, the hole that was created was kept open, and then they advanced it again a little bit at a time staying clear of any organs.” So Dajo had tubes made from scar tissue running through his body that allowed thin objects to be inserted through them. “If you looked at his back he had several holes on them, and I think those were failed fistulas – ones where they couldn’t advance any further,” says Saw.

VIDEO.

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Foundling Asylum

Abandoned on a door step in the dead of night, these are the desperate notes pinned to babies by poor and often unmarried mothers, pleading for someone to care for their child. The heartbreaking letters became part of records at the New York Foundling Asylum in the mid-19th century.

In October 1869, a group of nuns renovated a brownstone at 17 East 12th Street in Manhattan into the Foundling Asylum. Every night, the nuns would leave an empty wicker basket on the stoop, and almost every morning, a baby would be found there. By the end of the year the nuns had taken in 81 babies.