Illustration for article titled The Ebola virus was named in 1976 after the Ebola River in Zaire

As the New York Times reminds us today, the Health Ministry of Zaire named the Ebola virus after the Ebola River back in 1976. That river is a tributary of the Congo River. Zaire is, of course, now known as the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

From the November 30, 1976 New York Times:

The virus responsible for the recent epidemic of green monkey fever that claimed several hundred lives will be known as the Ebola Virus, after a river in the north, the Health Ministry announced today.

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The current Ebola outbreak has infected roughly 8,000 people and killed over 3,000.

Image: Ebola virus via the CDC


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