I was recently reading about early exploration of the Arctic and I found myself mulling over a most interesting fact: Scurvy was a massive killer of sailors and others serving overseas in the eighteenth century. It’s believed that between 1756 and 1773, the Royal Navy enlisted 184,899 men (they were all men in those days) and over the same period, 133,708 men died in service, ‘mostly’ of scurvy.
I’ve been a member of possibly the last ever generation to be brought up as Christian as a matter of course. Those responsible for my education as a boy would find that shocking; in the 1950s it was the perfectly natural way of things. Then, as I got older, I started picking up that some people thought that Science had overtaken God; that Science had made God unnecessary; that Modern Science had even killed God (as Vaclav Havel claimed). This was almost the default position of anyone who left school in the 1960s.