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September 29, 1934


Author Affiliations


JAMA. 1934;103(13):1010. doi:10.1001/jama.1934.02750390054024

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To the Editor::—  The following excerpt from Rolfe's "Attic Nights of Aulus Gellius" (volume II, p. 217), a judge in the courts during Galen's residence in Rome, appears apropos:The philosopher Aristotle has recorded (Cf. Hist. Anim. vii, p. 584, 29) that a woman in Egypt bore five children at one birth; this, he said, was the limit of human multiple parturition; more children than that had never been known to be born at one time, and even that number was very rare. But in the reign of the deified Augustus the historians of the time say that a maid servant of Caesar Augustus in the region of Laurentum brought forth five children and that they lived for a few days; that their mother died not long after she had been delivered, whereupon a monument was erected to her by order of Augustus on the via Laurentina, and on it

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