Bubonic Plague...The History


 
 

The bubonic plague can be described as enlarged, tender lymph nodes, fever, chills and prostration caused by the bacteria Yersinia Pestis, which lives in a flea, that travels on rodents. Was discoved by Shibasaurokita Sato and Alexandre Yersia.
 

One of the first mentions of the plague in history was in the year A.D.541. During that time it was called Justinian's plague after the emperor. It took the lives of approximately 200,000 people. That was in about a four month period. For about seven hundred years Justinian's plague went away and reappeared every ten to twenty-four years. Justinian's plague finally ended in the eighth century.

The Black Death began sometime around 1320, during the fourteenth century. It began in Central Asia. It is said that it started in the Gobi Desert and moved on from there.As time passed the pandemic, or wide spread epidemic, moved from city to city and country to country. There was no explanation for it. Many said it was a curse from God. The main cause of the wide spread disease was trade.
 

There were three main trade routes from east to west and the flea infested rodents would board the ships, infect the sailors, then when the ship docked, infest the new town. People began to suspect the sailors as the cause of the illness and would not allow them to leave the ship or unload. This didn't work because by the time the ships left at least one towns person had contracted the illness and so the cycle continued.

Those individuals who got sick were sent off to another location. They were put in plague hospitals and sometimes even banished. There were so many deaths, that in some parts of the country, there was no more burial room.

Many children died during this time and as a way to help other children deal with this, English society came up with a song (that we all sang as children), We All Fall Down: Ring around the rosies, a pocket full of posies, ashes ashes, we all fall down!

The plague shot through Europe, England and parts of Africa leaving the population obliviated and weak. In one part of the country, about 700 people were dying a day.

Around the year 1899, a ship sailing form Hong Kong came to San Fransisco and there were two cases of the plague on it. A few months later, the city had an epidemic.
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Today, the disease still occurs, but there ways to treat it. During the 1980's the average number of cases were eighteen a year. For that decade, the fatality rate was fourteen percent.
 

TIMELINE OF BLACK DEATH:

1320s: Plague begins in the Gobi Desert in central Asia.

1346: Black Death reaches coast of the black sea.

1347: Black Death gets in to Constinople, Alexandria, and      Egypt, Enters Europe through the country of Sicily. About 60,000 people die in Florence.

1348: France, islands of Italy, Cairo, Egypt, Bavaria, and Bristol, England all hit by Black Death.

1349: Scotland, Netherlands, and Scandinavia, and Islamic world.

1350: Norway, Denmark, and Sweden, as well as Slavic Europe.

1351: Hit the eastern edge of German speaking part of Europe. Pandemic comes to an end at Russian steppe.

(TAKEN FROM WORLD HISTORY SERIES:THE BLACK DEATH, BY PHYLLIS CORZINE).
 

(protective clothing worn in the 1600's)

LINKS:

Encyclopedia.com.

http://encyclopedia.com/articles/10258History.html
 

Sources:

WORLD DISATERS: THE BLACK DEATH, BY Timothy Levi Biel

THE WAY PEOPLE LIVE: LIFE DURING THE BLACK DEATH, BY John M. Dunn
 

QUIZ:

1. Define pandemic.
    A. STRANGE ILLNESS WHERE PERSON SMACKS PEOPLE WITH PANS.
    B. WIDE SPREAD EPIDEMIC
    C. SKIN DISEASE

2. WHAT IS THE NAME OF ONE OF THE FIRST RECORDED CASES OF THE PLAGUE?
    A. JULIUS CESEAR'S CURSE
    B. JULIA ROBERT'S DISEASE
    C. JUSTINIAN'S PLAGUE

3. WHAT WAS THE MAJOR CAUSE OF THE SPREAD OF THE PLAGUE?
    A. PROSTITUTION
    B. TRADE ROUTES
    C. RODENTS