The Medieval Spread of the Bubonic Plague

The plague, named the Black Death by later historians, had a devastating effect on the European population in the 14th century. Introduction The diffusion of crops and pathogens, including epidemic diseases like the bubonic plague, often occured along trade routes. The bubonic plague – named the Black Death by later historians – was caused by[…]

The Black Death and Early Public Health Measures in the Middle Ages

With no accurate knowledge about the disease and the way it was spread, what could be done in the face of such horror? ‘Cito, Longe, Tarde.’ Hippocrates and Galen are colossal figures in the history of medicine, renowned for their wise and innovative advice on medical matters. When it came to plague, they offered similar guidance, rendered[…]

Tales from a Medieval Plague Pit

We can now catch tiny pieces of DNA from ancient diseases and look for clues about how their genes have changed over time. Introduction The Black Death is without a doubt one of the most famous infectious diseases in history. Sweeping across Asia and Europe during the mid-fourteenth century, it reduced European populations by as[…]

Medieval Economy: The Great Depression of the 14th Century

The economic decline was marked by a severe drop in population. By Dr. Murray N. RothbardHistorian and Economist Most people — historians not excepted — are tempted to think of economic and cultural progress as being continuous: in every century people are better off than in the one preceding. This comforting assumption had to be[…]

The Black Death’s Economic Impact and Contribution to the Renaissance

The Black Death struck in 1348, 1362, 1368, 1381, and continued even into the 18th century. 1348 The Black Death arrived on European shores in 1348. By 1350, the year it retreated, it had felled a quarter to half of the region’s population. In 1362, 1368, and 1381, it struck again—as it would periodically well[…]

Plagues of the Past

Many diseases have affected the outcomes of battles or the political leanings of a country, but few have had consequences on society that continue to be felt in the present age. The plague is one such disease and its most famous pandemic – the Black Death – has changed the history, culture, and science of[…]