Arthur Albert St. Mouritz

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Arthur Albert St. Maur Mouritz
Born1861 (1861)
Died1943 (aged 81–82)
Known forLeprosy research

Arthur Albert St. Maur Mouritz,[1][2][3][4] often credited as A. Mouritz, (1861–1943)[3][4] was a British physician known for his studies of leprosy in Hawaii.[5] He travelled from England to Hawaii in 1883,[1] and was the resident physician to the Kalaupapa Leper Settlement in Molokai, Hawaii, from 1884 to 1887 or 1888.[1][6][7] He found evidence that there were cases of leprosy in Hawaii before 1830.[7]

Mouritz studied how leprosy was spread through experiments on hundreds of native Hawaiians.[5] He and his colleagues received international and long-standing notoriety for their experimental inoculation of leprosy into apparently healthy people.[1][5][8] To justify his experiments, Mouritz stated that Hawaiians were the only race not disgusted by leprosy symptoms.[6]

Mouritz's research revealed that leprosy was less contagious than previously thought.[1][2][5][6][7] He concluded that leprosy could not be spread by insects,[5] casual proximity or inoculation, but only be spread to a healthy person by exposing the mucosa of the digestive tract to the leprosy bacteria.[6][note 1] He posed that the bacteria summoned a fermentogen that was only available in susceptible humans, which fed the leprosy.[1][5][8] Instead of being moved to free the residents of the isolated leper colony so they could return home to their communities, he justified keeping them confined because he was disgusted by their ugliness.[6]

Mouritz wrote the first American book on Hawaiian leprosy,[10] and later wrote a book about the history of leprosy.[11] He practised medicine for at least 40 years.[4] After leaving Hawaii, he returned to explain the world history of influenza from 1120 B.C. to 1919 A.D., and its causes and treatments.[4] His book The Flu is included in the Surgeon General's Library at the U. S. National Library of Medicine.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ It is now believed that leprosy is mainly spread by prolonged exposure to respiratory droplets containing the bacteria.[9]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Wade, H. W. (1951). Human Inoculation Experiments in Hawaii Including Notes On Those of Arning and Of Fitch. International Journal of Leprosy. Volume 19 Number 2. Retrieved April 5, 2020.
  2. ^ a b Mouritz, A. A. St. M. (1916). The Path of the Destroyer - A History of Leprosy in the Hawaiian Islands
  3. ^ a b Project Gutenberg. Browse By Author: M. Retrieved March 1, 2020.
  4. ^ a b c d e Mouritz, A. (1921). The flu: a brief history of influenza in U.S. America, Europe, Hawaii. Honolulu, Hawaii, US: Advertiser Publishing Co. – via US National Library of Medicine - Digital Collections.
  5. ^ a b c d e f Daly, Matthew. (2007). Medical Necessity As A Defense For Crimes Against Humanity: An Examination of the Molokai Transfers. Arizona Journal of International & Comparative Law, Volume 24, No. 3, pp. 645–700. Retrieved April 22, 2020.
  6. ^ a b c d e Amundson, Ron (2010). A Wholesome Horror: The Stigmas of Leprosy in 19th Century Hawaii. Disability Studies Quarterly. Volume 30 Number 3/4. Retrieved April 5, 2020.
  7. ^ a b c Greene, Linda W. (1985). Exile in Paradise. National Park Service. Retrieved April 5, 2020.
  8. ^ a b Trautman, J. R. (1984). Epidemiological aspects of Hansen's disease. Bulletin of the New York Academy of Medicine, 60(7): 722–731. Retrieved April 21, 2020.
  9. ^ "Hansen's Disease (Leprosy) Transmission". 29 April 2013. Archived from the original on 13 March 2015. Retrieved 2 May 2020.
  10. ^ Bernholz, Charles D. (2009). Pestilence in Paradise: Leprosy Accounts in the Annual Reports of the Governor of the Territory of Hawaii Faculty Publications, UNL Libraries. 184. also published in Government Information Quarterly 26:2, pp. 407–415. Retrieved April 21, 2020.
  11. ^ A A St M Mouritz (1943). A brief world history of leprosy. Honolulu. OCLC 4984660 – via WorldCat entry.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)

External links[edit]