An Important Tale to Tell Your Friends
IT IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED that readers use the following uncontroversial, historical detail as a (rather bland and unobtrusive) instrument that just might wake up those who are still sleeping.
The word “influenza” originated in Italy. The first record of this strange and inexplicable illness occurred around the year 1580. As the phenomenon recurred, acute observers recognised that it tended to ‘pop up’ simultaneously in multiple locations, sometimes on multiple continents. In an effort to explain this cognitively dissonant fact, Italian ‘scientists’ examined sun-spot records and noticed that outbreaks always seemed to coincide with peaks of sun-spot activity.
They understood that when the sun’s surface (or corona) was most active, there were mass-ejections from the sun that manifested as spectacular displays of the Aurora Borealis in northern climes and that there were also magnetic effects (or magnetic ‘waves’) from the sun that struck the earth with uncommon intensity at these times.
Thus the word “Influenza became the name of this illness. “Influenza” being short for “Influenza delle stelle”—-Influence of the Stars.