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Pests, Plagues & Politics Lecture 19 The Black Death & Beyond

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1 Pests, Plagues & Politics Lecture 19 The Black Death & Beyond

2 Key Points: The Black Death & Beyond Political changes Pandemic vs. epidemic Campestral Arbor disease

3 The Black Death Also known as Bubonic Plague northern ChinaOriginated in northern China, ca. 3-4 thousand years ago. –China: from 243 BC to 1911 AD, recorded 290 plague epidemics. Causal agent a bacterium –Yersinia (Pasteurella) pestis 80% mortality rate is not unusual. “ Hey, Doc, what ’ s a Bubo? ”

4 That ’ s a BUBO!!

5 Without treatment kills two out of three within 4 days. Swelling of lymph nodes in groin and armpits Chills General ill feeling (malaise) High fever (102 degrees fahrenheit / 39 degrees celsius) Muscle Cramps Seizures Pain may occur in the area before the swelling appears

6 Without treatment kills two out of three within 4 days. Heavy breathing, continuous blood vomiting, urination of blood, aching limbs, Coughing (pneumonic plague) – highly contagious The pain is usually caused by the decaying or decomposing of the skin Extreme fatigue, gastrointestinal problems, lenticulae (black dots scattered throughout the body), delirium and coma.

7 Brian Tierney and Sidney Painter state that, “It is not surprising that some of the first reactions to the Black Death were marked by a sort of pathological irrationality.”

8 The Carrier by Nicolas Poussin [1630)

9 Burning of the Jews

10 *Whenever you have a great shift like this, there are political changes Higher labor costs Revolt of workers Textile industry boom in later years Renewed interest in religion and death Death/dp/0060014342

11 Christianity & Plague “ Throughout the early Christian period, every great calamity, famine, earthquake, and plague, led to mass conversions, - Christianity owes a formidable debt to bubonic plague and to smallpox, no less than to earthquake and volcanic eruption. ” H. Zinsser, Rats, Lice & History

12 Plague Routes

13 Rattus rattus – the ship rat

14 The Great Plague Pandemics Justinian ’ s Plague –480 to 690 AD. –Centered in modern day Turkey (& beyond) –In Byzantium (later Constantinople, later Istanbul). 544 AD, a mortality of 5,000 per day. –Suggested by Zinsser (a plague biographer) that plague was the coup de grace for Rome in the 5 th century.

15 Second Great European Plague Cycle 1059 to mid-1300 Originating in the Middle East and returned to Europe with the Crusaders. European mortality est. at 33% –1347 the population of Europe was 75 million –1352 the population of Europe was 50 million –ergo, one in three died


17 Third European Plague Pandemic 16th & 17th centuries London 1666 - 70,000 dead out of 450,000 –16% of the population. Finally died out ca. 1710.

18 Plague Terminology *EPIDEMIC –localized outbreak of a disease *PANDEMIC –continental outbreak of a disease *Campestral/Sylvatic –natural plague reservoirs (rodents) of field and forest.

19 California Ground Squirrel – Spermophilus beecheyi Cute, little devil You would be wise not to pet me.

20 More recent plague geography

21 Plague in the U.S. 1970 through 1981 New Mexico77 Arizona21 California16 Colorado 9 Oregon 7Oregon 7 Others 6

22 Is Bubonic Plague a major threat today?? No & here ’ s why: –Sanitation –Effective rodent control –vaccines Yes –in the underdeveloped & “ unsanitized ” regions of the world, with overcrowding, poverty, & rats!!

23 Plague today Rare Case Of Bubonic Plague Shows Up In Lake County David Nogueras | October 1, 2010 | Bend, OR State health officials say a woman in Lake County has been diagnosed with bubonic plague. It’s the first diagnosis in Oregon in 15 years. The disease terrorized Europe’s population more than 600 years ago, but the plague is treatable when caught early.

24 *Arbor Disease Insects as VECTORS of disease –To “ vector ” is to carry Insects can also serve as intermediate hosts of disease organisms

25 Bubonic Plague An ARBOR disease –vector: Fleas –Order Siphonaptera ( “ wingless tube ” ) 17 families with ca. 2,000 species worldwide having been around more than 100 million years. 9 N. Amer. Families with ca. 150 species –Ectoparasites of endotherms (mammals & birds) bilaterally compressed body - secondarily apterous ca. 20 species of flea are able to utilize humans as hosts –Female flea requires a blood meal prior to ovogenesis (laying eggs)

26 Plague “ Types ” Bubonic - flea bite required Pneumonic - direct human to human transmission; no fleas required Septicemic - direct infection of the blood stream; works very quickly. Note: the flea also dies of this disease

27 The oriental rat flea under better light. Xenopsylla cheopis, “ Dear God, what wonders there are in so small a creature. ” Antonie van Leewenhoek

28 Life History of Plague Primarily a disease of rodents –Sylvatic (Campestral) Plague –220 species of rodents shown to be capable of harboring the various species of fleas that can vector Y. pestis. Rats - not native to Europe (neither were mice). Plague is maintained by individual rodents who are partially to fully immune to Y. pestis.

29 “ Quarantine ” RatRat –Native to Asia Medieval trade brought the rat to Europe via ships –Along with the rat came the flea & the plague bacillus. Ships were required to sit at anchor for 40 days before off-loading cargo quarantaItalian word “ quaranta ” = 40 quarantineFrom which the English word “ quarantine ” is derived.

30 How to contract Bubonic Plague Normal flea transmission via an infected flea By scratching infected flea feces into your skin By swallowing an infected flea –ergo, please do not pick fleas off animals to eat! sounds odd, but it happens!!!

31 The Deadly Triangle Mammal Host Y. pestis Flea The flea vector will accept many hosts, rodents normally, but humans are acceptable, and Y. pestis is also pathogenic with H.s.sapiens.

32 Flea Control Chemicals –Many options –tidbit: flea collar an OSU invention Can you name the other OSU biggies?? Keep your home flea free clean often (the great Hoover ) which includes the bedding of your pets

33 Thanks to OSU Research

34 Key Points: The Black Death & Beyond Political changes Pandemic vs. epidemic Campestral Arbor disease

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