The Coffeelicious
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The Coffeelicious

Can You Catch Your Death of Cold from a Walk in the Rain?

What 19th century novels got right about seasonal viruses

Left: Jane Bennet on the rainy horseback ride that gave her a cold. Drawing by Maria Ter-Mikaelian, based on the 1995 BBC miniseries Pride & Prejudice. Right: Photo by Quality Stock Arts/Adobe Stock.

“MY DEAREST LIZZY, I find myself very unwell this morning, which, I suppose, is to be imputed to my getting wet through yesterday.” So lamented a character in Jane Austen’s 200-year-old novel, Pride and Prejudice. In that story, unlucky Jane gets caught in the rain while…

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