Weird History

Horrifying Things Most People Don't Know About Plague Doctors

Treating the bubonic plague became a medical specialty during the first widespread outbreak of the disease in the 14th century. The Black Plague, as it is also known, has made a comeback from time to time and, during its second major assault on Western Europe, plague doctors adopted the famous robe, mask, and hat-combo that one associates with the plague.  

Medical treatment for the bubonic plague by medieval doctors and their early modern counterparts didn't vary too much, but the plague doctor outfit of the 17th and 18th centuries did reflect a new approach to dealing with the disease.