Although we pretty well understand how diseases are spread today, that wasn’t always the case. Different ideas were thought to be correct for long stretches of time, regardless of how hard to believe they may seem to us today. The Victorian era, however, was a period of major findings, innovations, and discoveries, especially in medicine, so these things happening close together led to major changes very quickly at some points.
Respiratory diphtheria, a notorious disease known for killing children throughout history, especially during the Victorian era. This type of diphtheria is spread through respiratory droplets, often by an infected person coughing or sneezing, and people can be asymptomatic carriers, meaning they can spread the disease without even knowing they have it.