The Plague: The Causes Of The Black Death

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Most people have heard of the Black Death, but not many of them know all of the facts about it. The Black Death was a plague that killed an estimated 25-50 million people in a short time period of about five years in the fourteenth century. In this time period, 1346 AD - 1353 AD, about 33% - 50% of Europe’s population was killed by this horrible disease. If you think about this horrible number, you will be able to realize how important the Black Death was in human history. Now, some people would say that the Black Death was unimportant, because it happened in the distant past and doesn’t affect our times at all. But this is not true. In fact, there have been breakouts of the bacteria believed to have caused the Black Death as recent as the …show more content…
Most scientists today think that the Black Death was actually a form of Plague, caused by the bacteria Yersinia Pestis. The Plague usually lives in rats, but it can spread to humans. The most common way that the Plague spreads to humans is through fleas, which have bitten an infected rat and then bit a human. As the Plague causes a blockage in the flea’s gut, the flea is forced to regurgitate the Plague-infected blood into whatever victim it bites …show more content…
And although such mass scale dying was bad for the people at the time, it actually ended up having a good effect on European society as a whole. One good thing that the Black Death brought was an end to feudalism. Before the Black Death, there were so many peasants that their value was very cheap. So, most peasants were forced to live in poverty, as their feudal lords had no incentive to pay them well. After all, if a peasant asked for higher wages, you could just release him and get a new one. But, during the Black Death, many peasants died, leading to a worker shortage. Therefore, the peasants were able to ask for higher wages, leading to the end of their feudal lords’ power over them. Richer peasants lead to the second good change: a middle class. With more cash in their pockets and a greater sense of freedom, many peasants flocked to the cities, where they engaged in many new crafts and trades. These artisans became the middle class. They were able to invest in personal luxuries, improving the quality of life for many European people. The final change that the Black Death led to was an increase in human rationalism. In the centuries before the Black Death, the Church had made Europe’s focus more on faith and less on human potential. However, with people dying in droves during the Black Death, Europeans began to focus less on what would happen in the

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