USA NATIONAL LIBRARY OF MEDICINE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY USA NATIONAL LIBRARY OF MEDICINE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Medieval plague scene. Victorian woodcut of a street in a town afflicted by a plague epidemic. The town crier precedes a cart, shouting "bring out your dead" as bodies are piled on. Plague is a disease caused by the bacteria Pasteurella pestis and is transmitted by the rat flea. During the mid 14th century its bubonic and pneumonic forms are thought to have caused the Europe-wide pandemic known as the Black Death. During the Black Death almost a third of the population of Europe were killed, with whole cities devasted.
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