Behind the Gates of Chios’s Abandoned Leper Colony

This is a photoset of an abandoned leper colony originally opened in 1378.  In the old days, they often misdiagnosed fungal infections, psoriasis and other skin ailments as leprosy which would grant a patient a one way ticket to this fine establishment. After surviving some turmoil before the turn of the 1900’s, the facility was modernized with luxuries such as indoor plumbing , a laundry facility, and a restaurant among other things. “Surrounded by a pine forest, the colony must have been as pleasant as any such institution could be.” Given the choice, I’d personally rather take a Carnival cruise.

Where would you sleep?
Where would you sleep?

 

Although a sense of melancholy surrounds many abandoned institutions, the atmosphere that permeates this one, on the Greek island of Chios, is mixed. The word leprosy may evoke immediate feelings of horror and disgust; even today, centuries of superstition and prejudice have clouded our understanding of the condition. Notwithstanding, this deserted leper colony, surrounded by nature, has been a scene of death and catastrophe but also spirituality.

via Behind the Gates of Chios’s Abandoned Leper Colony.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. luranabrown
    Mar 16, 2013 @ 15:19:50

    Reblogged this on mrsbrownsparlour and commented:
    “The word leprosy may evoke immediate feelings of horror and disgust; even today, centuries of superstition and prejudice have clouded our understanding of the condition. Notwithstanding, this deserted leper colony, surrounded by nature, has been a scene of death and catastrophe but also spirituality.”

    I am moved by this story and these stark photos. So many people—particularly in previous generations—have been institutionalized against their will, and I would include being sent away to nunneries or monasteries in that list…but sometimes the human mind can tap into a state of spiritual solace or re-create supportive social networks within captivity…and when it does, it demonstrates great strength, courage, and inspiration to me. Justice? No. But Beauty? Yes!

    Reply

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