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Syphilis is ‘intended as a punishment for our sins and we should not interfere in the matter’1—Sir Samuel Solly (lecturer and surgeon), 1868.
In the first issue of the British Journal of Venereology in 1925, syphilis was a subject already in the mind of the medical world, with the first article not describing its symptoms, as they ‘are familiar to every reader of this Journal’.2 Syphilis had a long history of stigma, evidenced by the prevalence of …
Competing interests None.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.