Famous 18th c. English writer, Mary Worley Montagu once said, “People wish their enemies dead, but I do not; I say give them the gout…!!!” From Alexander the Great to Jared Leto, Charlemagne to Pavarotti, and King Henry VIII to former vice president Dick Cheney, “the king’s disease” (otherwise known as gout) does not discriminate, it seems, against those privet of royal blood. While Leto and Pavarotti are “kings” in their own right, we’re still left with Cheney, and being VP certainly did not make him kingly in the slightest… Yet lo’ and behold, Piero de’ Medici, son of Cosimo the Elder, was the one in a long succession of gouty rulers and political tyrants to earn the name Il Gottoso, “The Gouty”—that is, the gouty-est one of all. So what exactly causes this infamous ancient form of arthritis? Lots of booze and beef.
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