Pandemic – Means a rapid spread of infectious disease to a large number of people. Throughout human history, some widespread diseases claimed millions of lives.

The Black death

Miniature of smallpox from the Toggenburg Bible
Miniature of smallpox from the Toggenburg Bible

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Black death is believed to have originated around the Black Sea region. It spread rapidly through Europe and parts of Asia. Among rats nestling in the bowels of grain ships. The pandemic’s most devastating moment was between 1347 and 1351.

It is estimated that it killed two-thirds of Europe’s population. The plague would re-appear in subsequent decades. It is believed to have killed roughly 100 million people worldwide. In the space of some 200 years.

The Plague of Justinian

plague-of-justinian-541-542-ad
plague-of-justinian-541-542-ad

The plague of Justinian is a disease borne by rats in Egypt around A.D. 540. It spread to the Byzantine capital at Constantinople. It claimed 5,000 lives a day and killed nearly half the ancient city’s population. The plague became antiquity’s most lethal known pandemic. In half a century, it killed between 25 million and 100 million in Europe and Asia.

The 1918-19 Influenza Pandemic

1918-19 Influenza Pandemic
1918-19 Influenza Pandemic

It is also known as the Spanish Flu. The influenza of 1918-19 killed tens of millions of people. this is more than the number of those who died in all of World War I. It infected an estimated one-third of the global population. Hit young adults especially hard. Those who contracted the disease died quickly and painfully.

The last great plague pandemic

The last great plague pandemic It began in the 1850s China’s Yunnan province. The infectious fever killed tens of thousands of Chinese citizens. By the late 19th century it reached Hong Kong and Guangzhou. Both cities were major coastal shipping hubs. this allowed the disease to spread throughout the world.

The plague killed some 12 million people. It occurred at a time when scientific research was developing—giving scientists a perfect empirical test case for germ theory. This is the reason that we haven’t seen another pandemic even after a very long time.

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