According to recent press releases we face an increasing number of mass burials all over Europe (recently we had press releases on Ellwangen, Barcelona and London). Currentky there are rescue excavations at Toulouse in France. Around 150 corpses have been found, by now contributed to an outbreak of the plague in 1378.
Several of the skulls have been stolen from the excavation. Looting of archaeological sites is an increasing problem not only in the Near East. In Toulouse the looting of skulls may seriously affect the scientific value of the anthropological data for the analysis of demography, nutrition and the effects of the Black Death.
- Qui dérobe les crânes du cimetière des pestiférés rue des 36-Ponts ? LaDepeche (24.9.2014) – http://www.ladepeche.fr/article/2014/09/24/1958179-derobe-cranes-cimetiere-pestiferes-rue-36-ponts.html
Media report about a mass burial in Barcelona:
- Barcelona’s Black Death Victims. Archaeology Magazine (15.8.2014) – http://archaeology.org/news/2446-140819-black-death-spain-barcelona-mass-grave-plague
- Staring Black Death in the face. El Pais (15.8.2014) – http://elpais.com/elpais/2014/08/15/inenglish/1408097721_483831.html
It will be interesting to learn, how methodologically the burial has been dated between 1348 and 1375.
Black Death today
New finds in London
I just collected the links from recent posts in our facebook-group.
- http://www.medievalhistories.com/pest-or-plague/ – Pest or Plague? at Medieval Histories
- http://blogs.plos.org/everyone/2013/10/31/yersinia-pestis-ghost-of-plagues-past-2/ – Yersinia pestis, Ghost of Plagues Past at PLOSblogs
- http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-23900394 – Glasgow’s bubonic plague outbreak in 1900at BBC News
- http://poddelusion.co.uk/blog/2013/08/30/episode-202-20th-august-2013/ – The Black Death Is Back (34:46) by James O’Malley (ft Alison Atkin) at the podcast ThePODdelusion
Obviously the plague is for most colleagues here the most interesting aspect. However, I would like to emphasize, that we intend to understand the 14th century crisis within a wider context of social, economic and environmental history. – I would be glad, if we could have more contributions also for this broader perspective. It is not necessary to have elaborated scientific articles here. Short references / links to recent publications, own research or conferences may help to have the BlackDeath Network as a plattform of interdisciplinary exchange.
Dendrochronological dated house and some oral tradition from Norway in a rather popular paper:
- Medievalists.net (14.3.2013): Burial ground discovered in London may be victims of Black Death
- The Independent (15.3.2013): Unearthed after seven centuries the ‘Black Death’ pit skeletons that could unravel the mystery of what caused the plague
- a video at The Guardian (16.3.2013): Skeletons of ‘Black Death victims’ unearthed in London – video
- BBC News (15.3.2013): ‘Black Death pit’ unearthed by Crossrail project with a map of the site location
Peggy Binette reports at the Archaeology News Network (4.9.2012): Decoding the Black Death on the anthropological research on London skelettons by Sharon DeWitte.
A re-post from the Medievalists.net blog of a 2007 article in Medieval History Journal (10) by Anna Akasoy:
Ongoing analysis of the human skeletal remains from London by Sharon DeWitte reveals changes in health and lifespan in the wake of the Black Death, and adds to the growing body of bioarchaeological evidence that life for survivors was better.