There is probably no disease to which human flesh is heir that attracts, every now and again, such a degree of public attention—that begets such a keenness of personal dread—that so frequently forms the subject of sensational narrative or comment in the public press—that causes to be exhibited so disgraceful an amount and kind of ignorance, superstition, credulity, and cruelty—as hydrophobia. Even cholera is not so formidable a disorder in the public esteem. Its cramps are not always present; and when they are, they are not comparable with the convulsions of hydrophobia. Nor is there any terrifying mental disorder in the case of cholera; whereas, in hydrophobia the morbid mental phenomena are more prominent, serious, and impressive than the motor ones. Moreover, cholera is not popularly believed to be necessarily and in all cases fatal; whereas it is currently supposed that there is no chance of escape from hydrophobia.
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