Essay On Justinian Plague

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The plague holds a unique place in history and has a tremendous influence on the development of modern civilizations. Scholars even speculated that the Roman Empire may have fallen since soldiers returning from the battle of the Persian Gulf were carriers of the plague. For quite some time, the plague has been a symbol of disaster for people living in Asia, Africa, and Europe. Not only that but since the cause of it is unknown, outbreaks contributed to massive panics where every it appeared. Countless artworks, literature, and monuments attest to the horrors and devastation of the previous plague epidemics. Currently, it is known that the plague is caused by the bacterium, Yersinia pestis as seen to the right, that infects small rodents …show more content…
The plague claimed the lives of more than a million people. It appeared in the Constantinople in 542 CE one year after it arrived at the outer areas of the empire. The plague continued to spread throughout the Mediterranean for another 225 years until it disappeared in 750 CE. The initial plague can be traced back to China and northeast India; however, the Justinian plague's point of origin was Egypt. Historian, Procopius of Caesarea, identified the beginning of the plague in Pelusium on the Nile River's northern and eastern shores. According to Wendy Orent, author of the Plague, "the disease spread in two directions: north to Alexandria and east to …show more content…
As the disease continues to spread though the Mediterranean worlds, the empires ability to resist its enemies weakened. By the tear 568 CE, the Lombards invaded and defeated the small Byzantine army in northern Italy causing a split in the Italian peninsula. In the Roman provinces of North Africa and the Near East, the Byzantine Empire was unable to stop the Arab armies. Illness and death had claimed most of their citizens. This prevented them from recruit and training new soldier which lead to a decreased in size and poor ability to resist opposing forces. The population not only impacted the military, but it affected the economic and administrative structure of the empire causing it to

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