Doctors came to see her singly
And in consultation,
Talked much in French, German and Latin,
Blamed one another

And described a great variety of medicines
For all the diseases known to them.
But the simple idea never occurred
To any one of them,

That they could not know the disease
Natasha was suffering from,
As no disease suffered by a live man
Can be known.

For every living person
Has his own peculiarities,
And always has his own peculiar,
Personal, novel, complicated disease

Unknown to medicine-
Not a disease of the lungs,
Liver, skin, heart, nerves and so on,
Mentioned in medical books

But a disease consisting
Of one of the innumerable combinations
Of the maladies of those organs.

                                         – Leo Tolstoy in War And Peace ( Book Nine)
                                                      The chapter can be found here.


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