New exploration that comes from questions that have and have not been asked before is a wonderful thing. It enlivens the discussion, prolongs The Game, and adds colour to our everyday routine. This topic is the passion of all of our members, and everyone of us has something to add to the discussion. Please join in. There are no wrong answers, only unlimited positions to be stated and supported for the enjoyment and benefit of us all.
Incentive: We will award an annual prize for all members attaining the stature of Attending Quiz Physician (details forthcoming). Start now! It will be a very nice prize!
Who or what is a “scabby sheep” and what is the context? What other veterinary references does Dr Watson write about throughout the Canon?
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According to a site from New South Wales, Australia: Scabby mouth is a highly contagious viral disease of the skin of sheep and goats which usually affects lambs and kids in their first year of life. Others sites indicate that it’s caused by a mite, the dropping of which cause an allergy in the animals. Most of the sites about it appear (on the first page at least) to be from Australia.
All of which confirms my belief that one of the continents Watson lived and learned about the ladies in was Australia.
The phrase is uttered by Boss McGinty to McMurdo, “There’s no room for scabby sheep in our pen. But if you keep company with a disloyal man, we might think that you were disloyal, too. See?” McMurdo was talking to Morris, apparently unobserved, but the Scowrers have eyes and ears everywhere and McGinty considered Morris a “scabby sheep”–infected with disloyalty and such infection may spread to others with contact. Thanks to Ms. Kozinn for putting the term in context.
The Kozinn-O’Leary duo are becoming unbeatable. Great work!
Now, about those of you who have not answered… “What does “Scowrers” mean? We have many members from the Scowrers and Molly Maguires in San Francisco, so the discussion should be enlightening!
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