Niall Firth - Christopher Columbus and his crew have long been blamed for syphilis back from the Americas to Europe after their historic first voyage.
In 1493 they returned to Spain bringing news of lands across the Atlantic and the first cases of the potentially deadly disease thanks to their exploits abroad, it was believed.
But now scientists have found evidence that the disease existed in Europe long before Columbus was even born.
Skeletons unearthed in a cemetery at a church in East London show signs of the disease up to two centuries before the explorer first set sail.
Archaelogists excavating bones from St Mary Spital in East London found rough patches on skulls and limbs of some of the skeletons, telling evidence of syphilis.
Brian Connell, an expert from the Museum of London who studied the bones, said he had no doubt that the skeletons were buried before Columbus’ voyage. Radiocarbon dating of the samples is estimated to be 95 percent accurate. ...
via Christopher Columbus cleared of importing syphilis from the Americas to Europe | Mail Online.