My Ancestors Survived the Bubonic Plague, And All I Got Was This Lousy Autoimmune Disease

How natural selection left so many of us with incurable diseases

Carlyn Beccia
Aha! Science
Published in
5 min readApr 30, 2024

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The Triumph of Death by Pieter Bruegel the Elder. 1562 | Public Domain

In 1347, Pope Clement VI sat on his throne in the great halls of his palace, encircled by the crackle and hiss of two towering bonfires. As the heat warmed his sleepless face, Clement prayed the fire would…

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Carlyn Beccia
Aha! Science

Author & illustrator. My latest books — 10 AT 10, MONSTROUS: THE LORE, GORE, & SCIENCE, and THEY LOST THEIR HEADS. Contact: CarlynBeccia.com