The black death was a terrible plague that wiped out around 50% of Europe’s population. It had terrible symptoms with a big red boil on the skin that usually had a ring around it, aching, vomiting, fever and some other small symptoms. It stunk so bad that people carried a flower that smelt good called a posey in their pockets. It stunk because many people were falling down dead with this terrible disease, there were so many people that died that people had to burn the bodies to nothing but ash to help the stench and to help stop or contain the disease. Sound familiar? Well it should, because of the old nursery rhyme that went like this, “ring around the rosy, pockets full of poesies, ashes ashes we all fall down.” Ring around the rosy refers to the ring around the red boil, pockets full of posies refers to the flower, ashes ashes refers to burning the bodies and we all fall down refers to all the people that were dying.
The disease was spread by rats and the fleas that lived on them. The fleas would bite the rat, suck its blood, then bite us with rat blood still in its mouth so the blood would mix. The doctors were not very ‘smart’ back then, to try and cure it they would blood let. That is where you drain some of the patients blood because the doctors believed that the disease might be in their blood.
The plague ended in the 1800’s and wasn’t seen since.