it thrived in the unhygienic conditions aboard merchant trading ships on the Black Sea.
This illness appeared in 1347 and reappeared 6 times in Europe until its final outbreak in 1410.
It was swiftly transmitted amongst the population by rats and lice.
Victims suffered symptoms such as painful black lumps under their armpits and in their groin area that would ooze with pus and blood. Internal bleeding would cause their skin to look bruised. The smell of their breath, sweat, blood, urine and excrement was horrible and most would die within 3 to 5 days of contracting the illness.
Each outbreak lasted 4 – 6 months; it emerged in the spring time and disappear in the winter
It wiped out entire villages and cities, rich and poor alike, diminishing the population by 90%.
Some believed the cause was a result of the alignment of planets, others believed that it was a punishment from God, and even more people believed that it was witchcraft or sent by the devil.
those who survived were forced to abandon their former way of life, leaving their farmlands in the country to move into cities to make ends meet (urbanization)
Changes to the Spiritual Social Political and Economic structure of society due to the Plague:
Because everyone was affected by the plague, even those who strictly believed and practiced the teachings of the Church. This caused them to questions whether or not it was necessary to follow the Church without question.
The hierarchy of the feudal system could no longer function as it once did as there were far too few peasants left to cultivate Noble land.
Without the work of the peasants and serfs, the Nobles lost money and power, and because there was a shortage of workers, the peasants skills and knowledge was in demand, so if the peasants and serfs weren’t treated well by their noble lord, they could go work elsewhere and get access to more benefits than what they originally made
It motivated people to move to cities where they were exposed to people and exchanged knowledge and beliefs.
The deterioration of the Feudal system allowed the peasants and serfs to learn that they were not limited in opportunities and could move on to other places and occupations to improve their quality of life.
HOW DID THE GROWTH OF CITIES CONTRIBUTE TO A CHANGING WORLDVIEW? Urbanization
Florence, Genoa, Venice and Milan became very powerful cities due to success in commercial centers of banking, trade, commerce and industry
Italian city-states prospered for the following reasons:
Mountains to north help protect Italy from northern invaders and water around Italy helped protect it
Italy had been involved in the trade routes since 10th century
Feudal system was not strong due urban lifestyle and lack of agricultural land
Power of Roman Catholic Church of Italian city-states weakened when they move the papacy to Avignon South France. Pope and top clerics were French.
Italian city governed themselves without much interference from church.
Many city-states organized themselves into republics (a group of citizens, rather than a monarch, governs the state)
By 14th century most city-states had failed and were usually ruled by despots and oligarchies.
Warfare among city-states over territory and trading routes was common
City-states of Florence, Venice, Milan and Naples signed a Treaty of Lodi 1454 which brought stability to area – basically no city-state was allowed to become powerful enough to overthrow any other city-state. This allowed those cities to focus on improving trade and amassing huge wealth.