bedlam

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Bedlam:

see Bethlem Royal HospitalBethlem Royal Hospital
, the oldest institution for the care and confinement of the mentally ill in England, and one of the oldest in Europe. A priory in 1247, the building was converted to its later usage c.1400.
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bedlam

from Hospital of St. Mary of Bethlehem, former English insane asylum. [Br. Folklore: Jobes, 193]

Bedlam

(Hospital of St. Mary of Bethlehem) first asylum for the insane in England; noted for brutal treatment of its patients. [Br. Hist.: EB, I: 924]
See: Madness

bedlam

Archaic a lunatic asylum; madhouse