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Monday, August 17, 2015
20. Black Death
20. Black Death
Black Death was an epidemic which killed a third of Europe's population between 1347 and 1350. Originally from Asia, this highly contagious bacterial disease spread with devastating speed. In the filthy cities of medieval Europe, the victims usually live only a few days after the appearance of the first symptoms - vomiting, diarrhea and black skin tumors. The Black Death was not a isolated event and probably has hit Asia and Africa a few centuries before.
The disease is caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis, transmitted to humans through the rat flea - black or other rodents. Another form of infection is by inhalation of liquid droplets of sneezing or coughing of the individual patient. The first researcher to consider the black plague was Rhases an infectious disease, an Arab physician, in the tenth century.
In many cities, the plague did not just kill massive amounts of people and destroyed law and order, driving an entire civilization to the brink of ruin. The consequences of the plague in European society were profound. Many infuriated European Christians blamed the Jews for the disease, and the persecutions that followed the Black Death then among the worst outbreaks of anti-Semitism in history. Many Europeans also began to question the teachings of the Catholic Church and the existing political order. As a result, respect for Church declined and according to many historians, the plague destroyed the old feudal order of the Middle Ages and gave way to the Renaissance.
Scientists still debate the cause of the Black Death, whose greatest suspicion is bubonic plague, which still exists, but it can be treated easily with antibiotics. After the Black Death, it took four centuries to the European population to return to the previous dimension 1347.