Bubonic PlagueThe Bubonic Plague or also known as the Black Death was a rare but fatal bacterial infection that was transmitted by fleas. The bubonic plague claimed about 40 million lives duringits sweep across the British lands in the time of the Middle-Ages. This plague is the most common form of plague in humans, causing fevers and buboes. It left around thirty to fifty percent of the population after the plague. It was also the deadliest epidemic that swept the British lands. Even when they thought they had cleaned their living quarters, individuals failed torealize they were still living in filth (Callaway).The bubonic plague started in China during the early 1330’s. The plague largely affected rats and other rodents. The disease then transmitted from the fleas on these rodents to the humans. Flea infested rats would get on cargo ships from China and were then transferred all around Europe unleashing the Bubonic plague in 1348 (Caciola). The fleas would bite their victims and inject the disease into them. Within days of the plague, the disease spread to the city and countryside. This disease spread so quickly due to the filthy conditions the British people were living. During the Middle-Ages, there were no food sanitation laws. There were no cooking appliances or designated food preparation areas. This means that most foods were handled and cooked over an open fire. The utensils were cleaned in unsanitary streams or rivers without any sort of cleansing agents. There were no food storage areas or refrigeration to keep food from spoiling. Because of the unsanitary food conditions, the food was left in the open where rats and other rodents could easily get to it. This made it easy access for the rats and other rodents to get attracted to the house.Page 1of 6
“Filth running in open ditches in the streets, fly-blown meat and stinking fish, contaminated and adulterated ale, polluted well water, unspeakable privies, epidemic disease, - were experienced indiscriminately by all social classes.” Another reason why the bubonic plague spread so fast were the sewers and dumpsters. There was no restrictions of wastes and disposals. The sewers and the streets were open and filled with garbage. The wastes were also removed from the houses and were dumped into the nearest rivers. This was a perfect place for the rats to come up and feast.
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