The Bubonic Plague or often referred as the “Black Death”, was one of the biggest and horrific plague that swept across Europe and parts of Asia in the 13th Century. It is estimated that it killed about 20 million people and affected about one-third of Europe. It is also said to believe in October 1347, twelve ships arrived and docked at a Sicilian port in Messina and the people found a pleasant surprise. Some of the sailors on the ship were dead and some were terribly sick with black boils that oozed blood. This became a common occurrence through the years to come. (Source Three).
One young and lonely man tells an account of the Bubonic Plague. This young man, named Petrich, endured a lot of heartache as the plague swept through Europe. One of his closest friend Laura de Noves, died in the May of 1348. This death took a huge blow to Petrich. He says, “Her chaste and lovely body was interred on the evening of the same day in the church of the Minorites: her soul, as I believe, returned to heaven, whence it came. To write these lines in bitter memory of this event, and in the place where they will most often meet my eyes, has in it something of a cruel sweetness, but I forget that nothing more ought in this life to please me.”(Source Two). Worried about the plague, Petrich decided to write to his brother who lived in Monrieux. Petrich’s brother was the only survivor out of thirty-five people who had died. Petrich writes:
My brother! My brother! My brother! A new beginning to a letter, though used by Marcus Tullius [Cicero] fourteen hundred years ago. Alas! my beloved brother, what shall I say? How shall I begin? Whither shall I turn? On all sides is sorrow; everywhere is fear. I would, my brother, that I had never been born, or, at least, had died before these times. How will posterity believe that there has been a time when without the lightnings of heaven or the fires of earth, without wars or other visible slaughter, not this or that part of the earth, but well-nigh the whole globe, has remained without inhabitants. When has any such thing been even heard or seen; in what annals has it ever been read that houses were left vacant, cities deserted, the country neglected, the fields too small for the dead and a fearful and universal solitude over the whole earth?… Oh happy people of the future, who have not known these miseries and perchance will class our testimony with the fables. We have, indeed, deserved these [punishments] and even greater; but our forefathers also have deserved them, and may our posterity not also merit the same.
Furthermore, the plague may have gone away and run it course through the 13th Century in Europe, but has not gone away altogether. Today, modern medicine and antibiotics can easily cure the Bubonic Plague, but there are still cases of it. In Portland Oregon, a 16 year old girl acquired the deadly Bubonic Plague. According to USA Today, the girl likely acquired the disease from a flea bite during a hunting trip near Heppner on Oct. 16. She got sick five days later and was admitted to the intensive care unit at a Bend hospital. (Source Two).
The plague may be not as deadly and claim as many lives as it did in the past, but there are few cases in the United States.
Source one: Source One
Source Two: Source Two
Source Three: Source Three