The Black Death: The Greatest Catastrophe Ever

Around the 16 century over 50 million people died, about 60 percent of Europe entire population died due to the disease black plague. The black death began in Europe in 1348 to 1351 but It started much earlier in Asia in the later 1200’s and made its way to Europe on trade and cargo ships on the back of rats. When the ships landed in Europe, so did the rats. The black plague was caused by a bacterium Yersinia that circulates onto rodents.

The rats were the carrier that caused the infection; however, it was the fleas that carried the bacteria. The fleas would spread the bacteria where there were people living in great numbers. Once it began, citizens could not keep up with all the dead bodies and could do nothing to stop the disease. There were three types of plagues Bubonic plague, pneumonic plague and septicaemic plague. The black plague struck fear in Europe cities which led them to getting doctors to find out the symptoms and treatments. I have investigated my statement and I believe it is true.

My first key point is going to be symptoms, this information believes to be true. My first piece of evidence is from health line, the sighs of symptoms of plague generally devolved around 3 to 7 days after being infected, signs depend on the type of plague. The Bubonic plague included swallow pinfall lumps an enlarged lymph node, weakness fevers headaches chills, muscle pains and seizures.

The pneumonic plague causes abdominal pain diarrhoea fever and chills shock extreme weakness nausea and vomiting and skin turning black. Septicaemic plague causes trouble breathing chest pain cough fever headaches overall weakness and bloody sputum. Louisa Woodville states that you would be in humandic pain and wanting to die and not to feel the pain.

People believed that god was punishing the people for their sins, many people prayed and asked for forgiveness. once People got infected would get lumps on them, these are called buboes, Doctors say they would usually turn into red than purple than black there usually people would die after that, they could be up to the size of an egg or an apple according to Richard Aldington. About 75 percent of people who caught the disease died in 3 days. This evidence supports my opinion about the black plague and how the symptoms effected people.

My second point is treatments, people would go anywhere seeking for treatments to help them get better, but the problem was they didn’t have much medication nor doctors. So, they came up with ways to stop pain and treat the Black Death the ways are to reduce hot blood by bloodletting and deliberately bleeding in a vein. Balancing your diet with mustard, apple sauce, mint sauce and horseradish were used to balance your dry, cold and wet in your diet.

The treatments for the black plague included rubbing onions and herpes or a chopped-up snake, eating crushed minerals and drinking vinegar. In 1336- 1364 doctors figure out that bursting the buboes would the patients and sitting close to a fire would drive out the fever and putting fresh herpes around the house would purify the air. Something disgusting was to test their urine and drink it to see if they were healthy, they would observe people urine and test if they were getting better or not by giving them multiple test. Most people fled for alternative treatments most fled to seek cover and hide to stay away from the disease.


My 2 key points about symptoms and treatments was true, the doctors were no that experienced as we are today and without symptoms about the Black Death there would be no recognizing if you’ve caught the daisies. The Back death killed millions, without books full of notes there would be no symptoms or treatments they used back in the 1300 hundreds that we would no today. Nobody understood the Black Death back then; they didn’t know what caused it. The black plague left a devastating mess in Europe and left people quiet for a while until the disease stopped.

  • Harper perennial, in the wake of the black death.
    Oxford big ideas Australian curriculum Geography/history8 as secondary and primary source

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