Lists Home |
Date Index |
Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:
> one should look at the middle ages during the plagues when those that
> could left the cities and formed closed enclaves to save what they could
> of their own resources. It didn't always work, but when it worked, the
> local effect was positive.
From what I recall of my limited reading, the areas with the lowest
mortality rates from the Black Death were the big northern Italian cities
like Milan, which had effective governments who introduced good sanitation
and public health measures. Retreating from the cities was not a very
useful way of dealing with the plague, especially since the bubonic version
was not transmitted directly from person to person.
To the late-medieval mind, simply cleaning up the streets and providing
clean water and a clean living environment must have seemed like a stupid
and easy approach compared to mass public pennance, pilgrimages to holy
sites, retreat into the country, pogroms against Jewish residents, etc., but
it often cut the death toll in half all the same.
All the best,