The Black Death Of The 19th Century Essay

The Black Death Of The 19th Century Essay

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During the 14th century, Europe was going through a major change. With the rise of the agricultural revolution, food became much more plentiful than ever before. Their land was being cultivated and their quality of life was much better than it had been centuries before. They did experience hardships from the famine and the Hundred Years War, however Europe was experiencing a time of growth nonetheless. When the Black Plague emerged in 1347, Europe 's time of peace and growth came to an abrupt halt. Killing approximately one third of the total population of Europe and creating disarray all over the country, the Bubonic Plague (also known as the Black Death) had sever long term and lasting effects on their economy, religious and their social lives as well. Everything had turned upside down, and life was about to get much harder. Norman Cantor, an expert on medieval times, claimed that “the Black Death of 1348-49 was the greatest biomedical disaster in European and possibly world history” (Cantor 6). While this disease wiped out most of Europe and its citizens, it also brought about a great change in the years after. These changes led to the decline of feudalism, sparking the end of the Middle Ages, and brought about the emergence of the Renaissance. The Black Plague had several consequences, primarily affecting the social, economic, and religious aspects of people 's lives. The changes it caused were both positive for some as well as it was negative.
Starting with the social consequences, The plague had large scale social and economic effects. When the plague hit, the Europeans started to abandon their friends and family. They fled from their cities, and even shut themselves off from the rest of the world. The peasants starte...


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...ere in high demand for healing.When facing death, medieval society in 1348 looked to the Church, just as they did to medics, for rituals of comfort. Fearing contagion, burials became hasty affairs. By law, no one other than immediate family could accompany the body to the cemetery and many city governments forbid the ringing of parish church bells, believing it would discourag-e the sick and dying multitudes.In past centuries, death was embraced as a sister and friend, a welcome bridge to eternal rest. A priest would administer the Sacrament of Extreme unction to help prepare the traveler for his journey. Those left behind held ornate funeral procession and saw their loved ones buried in consecrated ground.
Backman states, “The fatalities, coupled with the fear of interpersonal contact, halted agricultural and industrial production and severed all commercial ties”.

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