Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The building pathology of early modern London
Author: Cornish, Stephen Michael
ISNI:       0000 0004 5367 1924
Awarding Body: Birkbeck (University of London)
Current Institution: Birkbeck (University of London)
Date of Award: 2015
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
This thesis is an exploratory study into enteric complaints and respiratory ailments in early modern London between 1500 and 1720. These two diseases are closely associated with urban environments, especially domestic housing, and they killed significant numbers during the study period. Unlike the plague, these diseases were comparatively stable from year to year and this thesis argues that this was largely related to constant exposure to defective buildings. While research into the relationship between housing and health is problematic, mainly because the inadequacy of housing is invariably associated with other hardships, such as poor nutrition and hygiene, this thesis aims to overcome this obstacle by applying new tools borrowed from the modern discipline of building pathology. This offers a contextual definition of a building defect and identifies the fundamental requirements of healthful housing. Building pathology also draws attention to the interaction of the external environment with buildings; the climate of the study period imposed extreme demands on vulnerable buildings and their services. Although there were variations in the quality of buildings occupied by different sectors of the population, the demands of the climate were largely exogenous to economy and society. Applying building pathology analysis to early modern London identifies conditions that were conducive to the spread of enteric and respiratory diseases amongst the wealthy as well as the poor. The final part of the thesis considers the social epidemiology of enteric and respiratory diseases, that is locating them within communities, spatially and residentially defined and questions whether the study of economic or social groups in the context of these two specific diseases helps or hinders epidemiology.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available