On August 23, 1973, an attempted bank raid at Stockholm’s Norrmalmstorg Square went badly wrong.
Four hostages were taken and the drama ended only five days later when tear gas forced the robbers to surrender.
The hold-up would doubtless have been forgotten but for the odd reaction of the hostages, who formed a close bond with their jailers.
And it was the events of those few days that gave their name to something now commonly described as Stockholm Syndrome.
This phenomenon has often been identified in the half-century since Norrmalmstorg Square.
But it has been remarkable to see it exhibited by whole swathes of the British public over the past year.
After 16 months of being told by the state when we could leave our homes, whether we could see our families, with whom we were allowed to have sex, or what kinds of sports we were permitted to play, many of us are eager to regain the human dignity that comes with the exercise of our own free will.
Others react differently.
When told that their double vaccination gives them substantial protection from serious illness, people worry that the jabs might work today, but what about next month or next year?
What if a new variant comes along that can evade the vaccines altogether?
For many months the evidence has shown that the most likely places to catch Covid are care homes, hospitals and private homes, but opinion polls show a widespread fantasy that the real dangers are from international travel, pubs and restaurants.
The Government’s least rational restrictions have played up to these unfounded prejudices, of course.
The closure of Covid-secure restaurants last autumn came shortly after the Sage advisers published advice that doing so would be unlikely to make much difference.
Similarly, making people jump through endless hoops and take multiple expensive tests if they want to fly to a safe and sunny country for a week or two by the sea must make those who don’t study the evidence believe that going to Majorca is a pretty risky business.