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Apr 2012

Dermatogeographical Synonyms for Syphilis

Arch Dermatol. 2012;148(4):484. doi:10.1001/archdermatol.2012.92

Syphilis was identified by a geographical term representing a people, a city, or a nation in which skin diseases were misdiagnosed as syphilis.1 Luca Landucci said that “ . . . in 1496 [in Florence] there was a disease that was called bolle franciose. . . . ” In 1498, Jacopo Manni, in his “Memoriale 1487-1530,” wrote that the French spread the vaiolo francioso in Italy. At the end of 15th century, Antonio Benivieni2 used the term vaiolo spagnolo for first time, and, later, Philip Barrough3 used variola gallica in what is considered to be the first English publication about syphilis.