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09.+Plague - Plague Some History 1320 BC Plague of The...

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Plague Page 1 Plague Some History 1320 BC Plague of The Philistines It ʼ s not absolutely certain that this was Plague but a Disease associated with an unusually large Rat Population occurred shortly after the Philistines swiped the Ark of The Covenant. The Philistines obviously hadn ʼ t seen “Raiders of the Lost Ark”. 542 AD Plague of Justinian The Epidemic was first recorded in Egypt (“The Breadbasket of Rome”). It spread simultaneously West throughout the Remains of the Roman Empire and East throughout China. As many as 100 Million may have been killed (mostly in Central Asia). 1347-1350 The Black Death The Term “Black Death” wasn ʼ t actually used until the 19th Century. • Europe was in an unusually vulnerable State During the lively Medieval Industrial Revolution Europe ʼ s Population increases had resulted in the use of marginal Lands for Farming. Food Supplies were just Adequate and there was not enough in Storage for a Rainy Day. Then came The Little Ice Age, a Climatic Change that resulted in Years of Rainy Days. Successive Failed Harvests lead to Widespread Malnutrition and Famine. • Plague was brought to Europe as a Result of an early Experiment in Biological Warfare - Genoese Merchants fleeing from a Band of Tartars sought Refuge in Walled Trading Post in the Crimean Port of Kaffa - The Tartars laid siege to the Trading Post • Plague broke out among the Tartars - They catapulted their Dead into the Walled Trading Post • The Merchants fled in Horror and sailed back to Genoa - Genoese Officials wisely refused to allow the Merchants into Port Later, Ships had to remain in Isolation in the Harbor for 40 Days to be sure no Plague was on board. This was called the Quarantina (Italian = little forty) . - Merchants ended up in Marseilles • The Black Death spread along traditional European Trade Routes • Plague killed about a Quarter of the European Population (approximately 25 Million)
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Plague Page 2 Some surprising Results of the Plague: • Most European “Old Growth” Forests date from this Time Get rid of the People and Nature comes back into its own. Unfortunately, we ʼ re seeing (and studying) an intriguing Parallel in the Forbidden Zone, a 30 Kilometer Exclusion Zone around the Chernobyl Nuclear Plant in the Ukraine (formerly Ukrainian Republic of the USSR). The Wildlife in the Forbidden Zone is doing so well that Poaching has become a serious Problem, as has Metal Salvage (such that the Wild Boar in a Moscow Restaurant or that Volvo Fender in a Kiev Auto Body Shop may both be Hot in more Ways than one). • Resulted in an accelerated Downfall of an already collapsing Feudal System - Labor was suddenly Scarce - Land was suddenly Abundant • Accelerated Shifts in Trading Routes and Trading Powers - The powerful Mediterranean Traders were replaced by Atlantic Traders on the Fringes of the Epidemic The Venetians (in the Mediterranean) were replaced by the Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch, English (in the Atlantic) and German Traders (in the Baltic).
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