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The Horrible History Of The World's Most Notorious Mental Asylum

The word “bedlam” means chaos to modern ears, and that meaning came from the British asylum known as Bedlam, short for Bethlehem Royal Hospital. It was born in 1247 as a priory which soon began to take in the mentally ill. Over the next few centuries, the asylum changed hands, changed management, and even changed locations, but for most of that time was a chamber of horrors. The inmates received either no treatment or terrible treatment, and at times were put on display as freaks. The institution is still in use today, although conditions have changed. All Day has an illustrated  timeline of the history of Bedlam over the past 750 years. 

(Image credit: Wellcome Images via Wikimedia Commons)

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