Plague and the End of Antiquity The Pandemic Of 541-750

ISBN-10: 052171897X

ISBN-13: 9780521718974

Edition: 2008

Authors: Lester K. Little
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Description: Plague was a key factor in the waning of Antiquity and the beginning of the Middle Ages. Eight centuries before the Black Death, a pandemic of plague engulfed the lands surrounding the Mediterranean Sea and eventually extended as far east as Persia and as far north as the British Isles. Its persisted sporadically from 541 to 750, the same period that witnessed the distinctive shaping of the Byzantine Empire, a new prominence of the Roman papacy and of monasticism, the beginnings of Islam and the meteoric expansion of the Arabic Empire, the ascent of the Carolingian dynasty in Frankish Gaul and, not coincidentally, the beginnings of a positive work ethic in the Latin West. In this volume, the first on the subject, twelve scholars from a variety of disciplines-history, archaeology, epidemiology, and molecular biology- have produced a comprehensive account of the pandemic's origins, spread, and mortality, as well as its economic, social, political, and religious effects. The historians examine written sources in a range of languages, including Arabic, Syriac, Greek, Latin, and Old Irish. Archaeologists analyze burial pits, abandoned villages, and aborted building projects. The epidemiologists use the written sources to track the disease's means and speed of transmission, the mix of vulnerability and resistance it encountered, and the patterns of reappearence over time. Finally, molecular biologists, newcomers to this kind of investigation, have become pioneers of paleopathology, seeking ways to identity pathogens in human remains from the remote past.

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Book details

List price: $34.99
Copyright year: 2008
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 1/14/2008
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 382
Size: 6.00" wide x 8.75" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 1.188
Language: English

Contributors
Preface
Map
Introduction
Life and Afterlife of the First Plague Pandemic
Historians and Epidemics: Simple Questions, Complex Answers
The Near East
'For Whom Does the Writer Write?': The First Bubonic Plague Pandemic According to Syriac Sources
Justinianic Plague in Syria and the Archaeological Evidence
The Byzantine Empire
Crime and Punishment: The Plague in the Byzantine Empire, 541-749
Bubonic Plague in Byzantium: The Evidence of Non-Literary Sources
The Latin West
Consilia humana, ops divina, superstitio: Seeking Succor and Solace in Times of Plague, with Particular Reference to Gaul in the Early Middle Ages
Plague in Spanish Late Antiquity
Plague in Seventh-Century England
The Plague and Its Consequences in Ireland
The Challenge of Epidemiology and Molecular Biology
Ecology, Evolution, and Epidemiology of Plague
Toward a Molecular History of the Justinianic Pandemic
Bibliography
Index
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