Bunhill Fields

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    The other side of Dame Mary Page's tomb.

    "In 67 months she was tap'd 66 times
    Had taken away 240 gallons of water
    without ever repining at her case
    or ever fearing the operation"

    marnanel and Nefi added this photo to their favorites.

    1. bootpainter 111 months ago | reply

      Good grief.I think I'd have repined now and then...

    2. Simon Crubellier 111 months ago | reply

      I'd have been repining the bloody house down by about the third go, believe me.

    3. Justin Cormack 111 months ago | reply

      Ah yes I was looking at that just at the weekend.

    4. dubmill 111 months ago | reply

      'tap'd' ? The water was siphoned off?

    5. Simon Crubellier 111 months ago | reply

      dubmill - yes; I've always assumed that she had some sort of cyst, since these can get absolutely enormous if not removed (there have been cases of cysts that weighed significantly more than the patient) and can produce astonishing quantities of fluid. The figures given here work out at about a pint a day; compare the cases cited in Gould & Pyle's Anomalies & Curiosities of Medicine:

      [...] Stockard describes an instance of this nature in a negress of fifty, the mother of several children. About twelve years before a cyst in the right iliac region was tapped. The woman presented the following appearance: The navel hung below her knees, and the skin near the umbilicus resembled that of an elephant. The abdomen in its largest circumference measured 68 inches, and 27 inches from the ensiform cartilage to the umbilicus. The umbilicus was five inches in diameter and three inches in length. Eight gallons and seven pints of fluid were removed by tapping, much remaining. The whole tumor weighed 135 pounds. Death from exhaustion followed on the sixth day after the tapping.

      Ovarian cysts, of which by far the greater number are of the glandular variety, form extremely large tumors; ovarian dropsies of enormous dimensions are recorded repeatedly throughout medical literature. Among the older writers Ford mentions an instance of ovarian dropsy from which, by repeated operations, 2786 pints of water were drawn. Martineau describes a remarkable case of twenty-five years' duration, in which 80 paracenteses were performed and 6630 pints of fluid were withdrawn. In one year alone 495 pints were withdrawn. Tozzetti mentions an ovarian tumor weighing 150 pounds. Morand speaks of an ovarian cyst from which, in ten months, 427 pounds of fluid were withdrawn. [...]

    6. Glyn1 111 months ago | reply

      I feel nauseous. I work about five minutes from here and, to my shame, have never noticed this. If you see some flowers here in the next few days, they're from me. Btw how many people use your final tag?

    7. Princess Valium 111 months ago | reply

      gruesome. ew. must. go. wash. hands. now.

    8. Simon Crubellier 111 months ago | reply

      Glyn1 - surprisingly few, but it's always good to get in early with these things.

    9. marnanel 101 months ago | reply

      I used to live in London, and I used to eat my lunch in Bunhill Fields. Now I live in Philadelphia and haven't been back to England for years. Last night, my partner and I watched a film where a character had an operation to remove a buildup of fluid, and I remembered Mary Pace (but not her name). So this morning I went to flickr, and lo! someone had taken a photo of her tomb and transcribed it. Thank you!

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