How Did " Chicken Pox " Get Its Name ?

Posted by NorisMadatulIqma at Sunday, December 19, 2010

          There's no shortage of theories on how chicken pox got its name, but two are more credible than others. One is that the terms derives from cicer, the Latin word for chickpea, which a chicken pox pustule resembles. The other suggests it come from the Old English word for itch, gican. Be they itchy pox or chickpea pox, one thing is certian: chicken pox doesn't come from chickens.

          Pox, or pocks, is an ancient word for any disease characterised by pustules on the skin's surface. Aside from chicken pox and smallpox, there is also the lesser-known cowpox - carried by rodents but often transmitted to humans via contaminated cows during milking - and a rare form of smallpox seen in Africa called monkey pox .


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