Tag: Defoe

Plague Driving People Nuts – Journal of the Plague Year – Daniel Defoe

Nay, a few were so enthusiastically ambitious as to run approximately the streets with their oral predictions, pretending they were despatched to evangelise to the town; and one mainly, who, like Jonah to Nineveh, cried within the streets, ‘Yet 40 days, and London will be destroyed.’ I will not be superb whether he said yet 40 days or but some days. Another ran about naked, except a pair of drawers about his waist, crying day and night time, like a person that Josephus mentions, who cried, ‘Woe to Jerusalem!’ a little earlier than the destruction of that city. So this terrible naked creature cried, ‘Oh, the remarkable and the dreadful God!’ and stated no extra, but repeated the ones words continually, with a voice and countenance complete of horror, a speedy tempo; and nobody should ever discover him to stop or rest, or take any sustenance, at least that ever I ought to hear of. I met this terrible creature several times within the streets, and might have spoken to him, however he might not enter into speech with me or anyone else, but held on his dismal cries always.

A Journal of the Plague Year
Daniel Defoe

Some time in the first few months of Covid, in 2020, there was a guy walking down the street outside my place. “Fuck Covid!” He yelled, loud enough for the neighborhood to hear. My guess was that he’d just lost some job prospect, or something fell through due to the shutdown.