lazar house

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

lazar +‎ house

Noun[edit]

lazar house (plural lazar houses)

  1. (historical) A place to quarantine patients with leprosy or other communicable illnesses.
    • 15th c., William of Worcester, “The Rolle of Sencte Bartholemeweis Priorie” cited in William Barrett, The History and Antiquities of the City of Bristol, 1789, p. 429,[1]
      These bee alle the bookes ynne the ache Camberre & of the reste of the Lazar house bee cellis & beddis for the Lazars, beeynge manie in number []
    • 1674, John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book 11, lines 477-482,[2]
      [] Immediately a place
      Before his eyes appeard, sad, noysom, dark,
      A Lazar-house it seemd, wherein were laid
      Numbers of all diseas’d, all maladies
      Of gastly Spasm, or racking torture, qualmes
      Of heart-sick Agonie, all feavorous kinds []
    • 1853, Elizabeth Gaskell, Ruth, Chapter 33,[3]
      A portion of the Infirmary of the town was added to that already set apart for a fever-ward; the smitten were carried thither at once, whenever it was possible, in order to prevent the spread of infection; and on that lazar-house was concentrated all the medical skill and force of the place.
    • 1965, Richard Howard (translator), Madness and Civilization by Michel Foucault (1961), New York: Random House, Chapter 1, “Stultifera Navis”,
      The lazar house of Nancy, which was among the largest in Europe, had only four inmates during the regency of Marie de Médicis.

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