Mosquitoes Suck

Let’s write an entire article about it. That’ll show ’em.


This article is, in a nutshell, an informational piece on mosquitoes. Despite being written in the early 20th century, the facts presented in this article are very consistent with the science we see to be true nowadays. The author states that a mosquito does not actually have a poison gland, but instead delivers some sort or irritant through its saliva. While that is true, we have more information regarding that matter now. We know now that the irritant is actually a protein in the mosquito’s saliva to which most humans tend to have an allergic reaction to, as stated here. The article states that only female mosquitoes “bite” people, which is supported in modern times as well, shown here. It also claims that more of them tend to be found around swampy areas, which is supported here. As we can see, the information provided in this article is factual and not outdated. This allows it to be a very functional expository piece.

However, the article is also humorous and almost satirical. Because of certain pedantic and condescending phrases such as “we in England”, “if you prefer it”, and “that other annoying parasite”, the author seems to have an inflated sense of self. When they describe the mosquito’s saliva and how different bites come with different magnitudes of discomfort, they follow it by saying that it does not matter since people are bitten regardless. They abruptly shift from giving information to completely dismissing its relevance. Things like this would normally indicate that they think they are above the reader in all possible ways, but due to it being so excessive and exaggerated, it is clear that they are using and arrogant tone to convey some sarcasm. The humor in this article makes it a lot more digestible, since the information itself is not actually that interesting to most people.

Here is another blog post in which a student analyzes the mosquito control efforts specifically in Egypt; and here is one that describes a miracle product that could heal anything, including mosquito bites.

Aaron Kamata
Aaron Kamata

The author, a student at Florida State University, was enrolled in the digital microhistory lab in fall 2019.