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16 April 2017, 02:29 | Muriel Sparks
The world's oldest person, Emma Morano, has died at her home in northern Italy.
"She didn't suffer", said Morano's longtime doctor, Dr. Carlo Bava, who reported that she passed away very peacefully, while sitting in her rocking chair at home.
"And cookies. But I do not eat much because I have no teeth", she said in her home at the time, where the Guinness World Records certificate declaring her to be the oldest person alive held pride of place on a marble-topped chest of drawers. He says "she thanked me and held my hand" as usual.
Born on November 29, 1899, Morano's life spanned three centuries.
"She was slowly fading away", Bava said.
In an interview with La Stampa newspaper five years ago she said her fiance had died in WWI and that she had then been forced to marry a man she did not love.
Always a biscuits-lover, she has been used to eating very little vegetables, according to her personal doctor.
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Morano outlived all her eight brothers and sisters, including one who died at 102.
While other centenarians have attributed their longevity to everything from exercise to lack of exercise, Morano claimed her secret to a long life was two raw eggs a day.
Morano's life spanned three centuries, two World Wars, 90 Italian governments, an abusive marriage, the loss of her only son.
She lived through two World Wars, worked in a jute factory and courageously chose to separate from an abusive husband at a time when divorce was frowned on. On November 29, 2016, Morano celebrated her 117th birthday. "I think I was one of the first in Italy to do that", she said.
She also defied health advice, Bava said Saturday. Her only child died in infancy and Morano supported herself working in a factory producing jute sacks.
Researchers from Harvard Medical School visited her in 2014 as part of a study into immunity to diseases, the Italian news agency ANSA said.
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