V0022492 An itch mite (Acarus autumnalis). Coloured etching, ca. 1790

Itching and Scabbiness

‘The Itch is a filthy Distemper infesting the External Parts of the Body universally, but more particularly the Joints, and between the Fingers’, wrote Thomas Spooner, author of a multi-edition treatise on the subject of ‘the itch’.[1]  Skin diseases and itchiness generally seem to be part and parcel of early modern life. Venereal diseases had…