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Article
September 15, 1906

PHYSICAL BASIS OF LIGHTNING DREAD.

JAMA. 1906;XLVII(11):864-865. doi:10.1001/jama.1906.02520110048008

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Abstract

The mortality statistics of the last five years show that the average annual number of deaths from lightning was more than 200. The report of these sad accidents is read with terror, yet with avidity, by many persons who have an inordinate dread of lightning, and the consequence is an increase of their lightning phobia, so that toward the end of the summer a thunder storm becomes a source of positive dismay. It is usually considered that such persons have an unreasoning dread of lightning, but an analysis of cases soon shows that most of them are sensible persons under ordinary conditions. though they lose all their confidence in themselves almost at the first sign of a lightning storm.

There is no doubt now in the minds of those who have studied a number of those cases closely that the dread of lightning is a true phobia, though there is

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