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HIS 121c Lecture 6 The Black Death- Crisis and Resilience 1347-1400

HIS 121c Lecture 6 The Black Death- Crisis and Resilience 1347-1400

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2-26 The Black Death: Crisis and Resilience 1347-1400 • by early 14th c Europe was overpopulated • England c. 6 million • land became scarce • much of the land turned out not high enough quality • soil exhaustion in spite of 3 field crop rotation • every year they had to hold back a greater and greater proportion of what they grew for seeds for the next harvest • when revenues declined, landowners raised rents • more peasants having to leave the land because they couldn’t make living off the land • compelled to go to places (cities) to sell their labour • unsustainable subdivision of peasant holding • c. 1314 • heavy rains began • much colder and wetter winters • ”the Little Ice Age” • flooding in Low Countries and England • poor harvests led to famine in many regions, 1315-1322 • could not count on a season with warmth • many crops had begun to fail • “the Great Famine” • all over western Europe at different times • can’t get food to where people are
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