The days when death could be only a few doors away are recalled in 'Plague!', the National Library of Scotland's new exhibition.
Material from the Library's archives and loans from collections across the UK help tell the story of deadly infectious diseases that have killed many more Scots than world wars.
Up to a third of the Scottish population died in the worst outbreaks of bubonic plague, with the last one striking Glasgow as recently as 1900. For most of this time the cause of infection was unknown, resulting in widespread fear and helplessness.
The exhibition looks at how Scots dealt with plague, cholera, typhus, smallpox, influenza and other contagious diseases and at how governments reacted.
'We hope people who visit the exhibition will get a real sense of how fragile life was before we came to understand and conquer infectious disease,' said Rare Books Curator Dr Anette Hagan.
'Plague! A cultural history of contagious diseases in Scotland' is open until 29 May and entry is free.
Read more in our exhibition media release
10 December 2015