Medicine: Old Sac

The fatal illness of William the Conqueror, who died on Sept. 9, 1087, was finally diagnosed last week. After studying the records, Frances Tomlinson Gardner of the University of California Medical School's department of medical history and bibliography decided that the man who conquered England was conquered by peritonitis. Previous historians had been content with vague references to "internal injuries."

William's difficulties probably started with diet, says Miss Gardner in Surgery, Gynecology and Obstetrics. Like most people in the Middle Ages, he ate too much in summer and too little in winter; that,...

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