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Article
September 13, 1884

" Children of the Siege."

JAMA. 1884;III(11):296-297. doi:10.1001/jama.1884.02390600016004

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Abstract

—Such is the name applied in France to those unfortunate children who were begotten during the siege of Paris in 1871. We call them unfortunate, because conceived of mothers, who, torn alternately by the conflicting emotions of hope and despair, and too nearly famished themselves to spare requisite nourishment for their offspring in utero, were nevertheless compelled to yield to the lust of half-drunken husbands. Begotten of such parents amid the " horrors of the Commune," these " Children of the Siege" came into the world puny and misshapen. M. LeGrand du Saulle, one of France's most celebrated alienists, has stated that out of ninety-two such children examined by him sixty-four were crippled in mind or body; out of this number thirty-five showed malformations and twenty-nine were imbecile. There is nothing surprising in these facts. They are but impressive, because exaggerated illustrations of what we see about us daily; children born of

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