Skull Fragments Reveal Beethoven Likely Died Of Lead Poisoning
"Beethoven had hoped that some day it would be revealed why he acted the way he did," said Paul Kaufmann, the owner of the skull fragments, who loaned them to the Ira F. Brilliant Center for Beethoven Studies at San Jose State University.
"He was seen as angry and uncooperative at times. This finding helps shed some light on that," he said. "Now we know that this was the reason for his suffering."
Lead poisoning can lead to headaches, fatigue, concentration problems and other health issues.
Analysis in the late 1990s from a lock of Beethoven's hair indicated that he had lead poisoning at the time of his death, but the latest skull analysis revealed that the condition existed over a long period of time.
"You can't draw any conclusions from the hair sample. This is a more significant finding," Beethoven scholar and biographer Maynard Solomon, who was not involved in the skull testing, said in a telephone interview.
comments powered by Disqus
- Russian History Receives a Makeover That Starts With Ivan the Terrible
- Parsing Ronald Reagan’s Words for Early Signs of Alzheimer’s
- Here's a look at history of 'religious freedom' laws
- ‘Hamilton’ Puts Politics Onstage and Politicians in Attendance
- Earth Tectonic Plate Simulation Reveals Our Planet Has Changed A Lot In 200 Million Years
- Historians make it easy for visitors to DC to understand the history of the Mall
- History's Grandin Wins Bancroft Prize for "The Empire of Necessity"
- Nobel prize-winning scientist writes a history of science
- Ken Burns tackles history of cancer
- If historians have their way, Americans will soon learn how important religion has been in US history