National Library of Medicine

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Explore research on industrial lead exposure, childhood lead poisoning, and the health impacts of lead water pipes, as well as related public health guidance through items in the NLM Digital Collections.

A book cover page

Some Landmarks in the History of Lead Poisoning, Ralph Hermon Major, 1931

Courtesy National Library of Medicine

Ralph H. Major, a physician and historian of medicine, reviewed writings on lead poisoning throughout history. On page 219, Major mentions that as early as the 2nd century BC, ancient Greek physician Galen had warned against drinking water that ran through lead pipes.