The Dancing Plague of 1518
Once upon a time in the French city of Strasbourg, there was a sudden outbreak of non stop dancing that actually killed many locals. The Dancing Plague of 1518 kicked off during a humid July in 1518, when one woman began dancing erratically in the middle of the street for 4 to 6 days straight. By the end of the week, the woman had acquired 34 fellow dancers. In a month’s time the improvised dance floor had ballooned to an estimated 400 people.
These people danced for days straight, many eventually dying of heart attack, stroke and exhaustion. The authorities consulted local physicians and determined the cause to be “hot blood.” To cure the condition they decided to build an elaborate dancing hall and hire a band to encourage the afflicted to continue to dance until they got it out of their system. It is still not known the true cause of the incident.