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© Boardworks Ltd 2004 1 of 19 Avoid it Like the Plague: The Black Death.

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Presentation on theme: "© Boardworks Ltd 2004 1 of 19 Avoid it Like the Plague: The Black Death."— Presentation transcript:

1 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 Avoid it Like the Plague: The Black Death

2 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 What was the Black Death? The Black Death is also known as the plague. In the fourteenth century it spread rapidly across Europe and caused a massive reduction in population. A medieval description of the plague: “…emergence of certain tumours in the groin or armpits, some of which grew as large as a common apple. Black spots appeared on the arm or the thigh…” People who caught the disease had swellings on their bodies, sometimes as big as eggs. Then the black spots would appear, which gave the disease its name. a797-09a4d5fef7e9&blnFromSearch=1&productcode=HUB

3 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 What was the plague and how did it spread? There were two forms of the plague that spread through Europe in the Middle Ages: Bubonic plague was caused by a bacteria that infected rats. Fleas bit the rats and become infected. They then hopped onto humans, bit them and passed on the disease. Pneumonic plague was also caused by the same bacteria but was more deadly. It was caught by breathing in the germs when an infected person coughed or sneezed.

4 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 Symptoms of the plague

5 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 Plague doctor

6 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 What did people believe caused the plague? Sent by God to punish them for their sins. The movements of the planets. Being close to infected people. Bad smells or bad air. Were any of these ideas correct? Jewish people poisoned the drinking water. Over-eating

7 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 How did the plague get to Europe? The Black Death travelled along trading routes. It is believed that Italian traders picked up infected rats/fleas and the disease in Asia and brought it by ship to Caffa (Europe). From these infected sailors and rats/fleas, it spread throughout Europe along trade routes. 9fafff09f00f&blnFromSearch=1&productcode=HUB 30bf556a4ffc&blnFromSearch=1&productcode=HUB

8 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 The spread of the plague

9 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 1.Toilets over the River Thames. 2.People fishing in the polluted river. 3.Butchers working in the street. 4.Food sold in markets on the filthy streets. 5.Animals kept in pens on the streets. 6.Toilet waste thrown out of windows. 7.Open sewers flowing down the street to the Thames. 8.A man urinating against the wall of a house. 9.Crowded houses in the city. 10.Animals pulling carts. Spread of the Plague in the City

10 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 “In the month of August 1348, after the evening sun began to set, a very bright star appeared above Paris … The star seemed much nearer the earth than stars usually are … it seemed to me … that the star stayed in one place … At last darkness fell. Then to the amazement of all of us, the star split up into many different rays. It shed these rays towards the east, over Paris. The star then completely disappeared.” Description of the plague reaching France by Jean de Venette, friar. What does this source tell you about how people thought the plague began? Why did many people blame God? Medieval Beliefs about the Cause of the Plague

11 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 How did people try to prevent/treat the plague? It was thought that by bleeding people, they could get rid of the bad blood which caused the plague. Shaving a live chicken’s bottom and attaching it to the boils Cutting a live pigeon in half and rubbing it on your boil Eating crushed emeralds

12 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 How did people try to prevent/treat the plague? Throwing nicely-scented herbs on to the fire to purify the air Eating poisonous arsenic powder Slicing open your boil and burning it with a red-hot poker “[Toads] should be placed on the plague boil. The toad will swell and draw out the poison of the plague to its own body…” Guy de Chauliac

13 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 How did people try to prevent/treat the plague? Flagellants were people who believed that if they whipped and hurt themselves, God would take pity on them. People went on religious pilgrimages to holy sites to please God de99-49d0-b4c fd09&blnFromSearch=1&productcode=HUB

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15 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 The Outcome of the Black Death Death in Europe from the Plague in the s Around 25 million people Around 1/3 to 1/2 of population 8fc17-41c bed8- 8b91f30d93fa&blnFromSearch=1&productcode=HUB d6f0b b- ddb5d3c51303&blnFromSearch=1&productcode=HUB

16 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 How did the Plague change Medieval society? In many areas, villages were deserted, so there was more good land for people to grow crops on. People remained religious but questioned the church and its leaders – church became less powerful

17 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 “ At Woodeaton there were only two farmers left and they would have gone away if the abbot had not made a new agreement with them to reduce their work service…” from the records of Eynsham Abbey, c “As soon as masters accuse their workers of bad work … they leave quickly and find jobs in new places at higher wages. Masters dare not upset their workers…” from Introduction to a Law, In many areas, populations were greatly reduced, so serfs could ask for higher wages, demand their freedom, and purchase their own land. Many people moved to the cities. Feudalism DIED! How did the Plague change Medieval society?

18 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 How did the Plague change Medieval society? As there were fewer people, new technology and devices were invented to do the work such as grinding wheat, spinning wool, and copying texts. e.g. Gutenberg printing press. Manufacturing increased dramatically. People began questioning everything as life was not guaranteed; they no longer accepted authority figures or their assigned place in life according to their birth... a rebirth was about to begin!

19 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 Effects of the Black Death

20 © Boardworks Ltd of 19 The End


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