by James Gurney

So here is the news I didn’t tell you about last time. So I’ve been talking to a number of people in recent months the most important of these are Freya Harrision and Cristina Lee in this story. Between the two of them they have been trying to setup a cross discipline research group looking at how disease and health were perceived in ancient times, how they treated disease and how did pathogen spread through these populations. I hopefully don’t need to tell you how excited I am to be involved in this collaboration.

So what will we be doing? Well that hasn’t yet been formalised but certainly one thing we plan on sorting out it getting someone in to the lab to test some of the medicines that we have quite accurate accounts of. I’m still trying to push to test the ‘potion’ to help with unruly dwarfs but it is probably best we stick to microbes.

Another side that I am very interested in seeing if we can get off the ground is how did pathogens spread through populations. There are a number of differences between population structures from today to the pre industrial age. These differences could have huge implications for how and why pathogens managed to cause such havoc. We have also wrangled a climate geologist. Together we could model climate and population and see if there is a link between plagues and climate.

I also hope that we can include some out reach into the project, currently we are talking about public lectures in 2015 but I don’t see why blogs like this and maybe even some youtube videos can’t find their way into the project.

There is one big problem so far and that is we haven’t secured funding but we are hopeful, mainly as this is truly a cross-disapline project and the university is always trying to get us to talk together and be friends.

So that is that for now, hopefully as the project develops I can let you all into more and more details and oh so juicy science.