The Black Death

The Disease That Killed Millions

What Is The Black Death

The Black Death is a terrible plague that struck Europe from 1347-1351. It was started from bacteria from fleas who who would jump on rats' backs to drink their blood. The rats died so fleas would go to the humans. This all started in China and parts of Asia. Sailors would get sick and bring it to Europe. The sailors would go to other port cities and get people sick there. The plague spread to cities and lots of people caught it. The Black Death killed a total of 75 million people, which at the time was a higher death total than any other war, disaster, or plague.

Facts About The Black Death

  • Scholars think that the song Ring Around The Rosy came from the symptoms of Black Death
  • Some people thought the plague was a punishment from God
  • The Black Death killed a third of the people in China
  • The word quarantine comes from the Italian words quaranta giorni because when ships came the people of Dubrovnik would isolate the ships for forty days which is what quaranta giorni means
  • In Paris half the people in the city died

What Happened When You Caught The Black Death

When you caught the Black Death first you would get swellings called buboes in your armpits and groins. The swellings last about a week. During the week you might go to a doctor. The doctor might tell you to do some of these things.


  • Sitting in the sewers
  • Sitting in a room in the middle of two huge fires
  • Fumigating your home with herbs
  • Some people thought the Black Death was a punishment from God, so they whipped themselves