Basic Facts about Lunatics in England and Wales For Family Historians. Pamela Faithfull
Lunatic is a pre-twentieth century word describing someone who was mentally ill or emotionally disturbed, and had lost their powers of reasoning. Finding out that you had an ancestor in an asylum or who was called a lunatic in the census can be part of the fun of family history. This guide explains how such people were treated in the past, and how to find them in the records.