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Muggia is a town situated between Trieste and Koper in the upper Adriatic. It belonged to the Venetian Republic of San Marco and then, after the Napoleonic Wars, it came under the rule of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Originally a small fishing village, it experienced industrial and demographic growth with the development of its shipyards, and in this it followed, albeit on a smaller scale, the fate of the nearby city of Trieste. Imperial regulations mandated that parish priests were to serve as civil registrars and that all death records (liber mortuorum) were to report the cause of each death, as communicated by the physician. This article examines the causes of death in the town of Muggia over a fairly homogenous period of time, up to the end of World War I. The main causes of death during this time include infectious diseases, both acute (see the town’s contribution to the last cholera epidemic in 1886) and chronic (bronchopulmonary
diseases and tuberculosis appear as a constant cause of death over the years). There was the usual high rate of child mortality, as well as workplace accidents or at any rate violent deaths, and a broad range of poorly delineated chronic conditions of diverse origin (neoplastic, malnutritional), which accounted for all those deaths whose definition was no longer of medical concern.

Key words: History of medicine, 19th and 20th century, mortality, Muggia, Italy