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Black Death
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Black Death

The Black Death was a plague pandemic that devastated medieval Europe from 1347 to 1352. The Black Death killed an estimated 25-30 million people. The disease originated in central Asia and was taken to the Crimea by Mongol warriors and traders...
Procopius on the Plague of Justinian: Text & Commentary
Article by Joshua J. Mark

Procopius on the Plague of Justinian: Text & Commentary

The Plague of Justinian (541-542 CE and onwards) is the first fully documented case of bubonic plague in history. It is named for the emperor of the Byzantine Empire at the time, Justinian I (r. 527-565 CE) and recorded by his court historian...
Boccaccio on the Black Death: Text & Commentary
Article by Joshua J. Mark

Boccaccio on the Black Death: Text & Commentary

The Black Death is the name given to the plague outbreak in Europe between 1347-1352 CE. The term was only coined after 1800 CE in reference to the black buboes (growths) which erupted in the groin, armpit, and around the ears of those infected...
Plague of Cyprian, 250-270 CE
Article by John Horgan

Plague of Cyprian, 250-270 CE

The Plague of Cyprian erupted in Ethiopia around Easter of 250 CE. It reached Rome in the following year eventually spreading to Greece and further east to Syria. The plague lasted nearly 20 years and, at its height, reportedly killed as...
Game Review: A Plague Tale: Innocence
Article by Jan van der Crabben

Game Review: A Plague Tale: Innocence

A Plague Tale: Innocence is a true masterpiece of interactive storytelling. The video game (console versions on Amazon, PC version on Steam) takes the player back to medieval France. The country is troubled by both the Hundred Years' War...
Ten Plagues of Egypt
Definition by Rebecca Denova

Ten Plagues of Egypt

The story of the ten plagues of Egypt is found in chapters 7-12 of the Book of Exodus. The story depicts the natural disasters sent by the God of Israel to convince Pharaoh to let the Hebrew slaves leave Egypt. The narrative purpose of the...
Lucius Verus
Definition by Donald L. Wasson

Lucius Verus

Lucius Verus was Roman emperor from 161 to 169 CE. Lucius Verus was Marcus Aurelius' adopted brother and co-emperor, a man whose time on the throne is overshadowed by the reign of the last of the Five Good Emperors. In the final years of...
Plague in an Ancient City
Image by Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Plague in an Ancient City

"Plague in an Ancient City" by Michiel Sweerts (1618-1664 CE) is believed to depict the Plague of Athens (430-427 BCE). Oil on canvas. Painted c. 1652-1654 CE. 118.7 cm (46.7 in) x 170.8 cm (67.2 in). (Courtesy of Los Angeles County Museum...
Plague in the Ancient and Medieval World
Video by The Study of Antiquity and the Middle Ages

Plague in the Ancient and Medieval World

The word 'plague', in defining a lethal epidemic, was coined by the physician Galen (l. 130-210 CE) who lived through the Antonine Plague (165 - c. 180/190 CE) but the disease was recorded long before in relating the affliction of the Plague...
Plague 101 | National Geographic
Video by National Geographic

Plague 101 | National Geographic

What is plague? How many people died from the Black Death and the other plague pandemics? Learn about the bacterium behind the plague disease, how factors like trade and urbanization caused it to spread to every continent except Antarctica...
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