Audun Dybdahl: Climate and demographic crises in Norway in medieval and early modern times. The Holocene 22 (10), 2012, 1159-1167
The paper claims that the role of the climate for the late medieval crisis in Norway (and more general) has been underestimated.
The folks at Medievalists.net have recently updated their resources on the Black Death: http://www.medievalists.net/2010/10/01/black-death/
127th annual meeting of the American Historical Association, January 2013 at New Orleans
http://aha.confex.com/aha/2013/webprogram/Session7774.html with abstracts of the papers
Remapping the Black Death in the Age of Genomics and GIS will be an important topic, as many maps showing the spread of the Black Death still use 19th c.’s data collection, which often do not refer to the sources properly. And in many cases they just seem to use evidence of pogroms as a real evidence for the Black Death.
Several studies have dealt with the idenficiation of aDNA of Yersinia pestis. There are several arguments for a mutation of Y. pestis shortly before the 1347-53 pandemic. Probably there were different variants of Y. pestis involved. In order to understand the historical ecology of the Black Death and the role of 14th-century land-use practices and climate changes it will be crucial to trace the development of Y. pestis .
To date Y. pestis has been extracted from human skeletal remains at the following locations:
Yersinia pestis – larger map
(additions are welcome)
Philip Slavin: How Great Was the Great Famine of 1314-22: Between Ecology and Institutions. Yale Economic History Workshop, October 19, (2009)
There can be little doubt that the Great European Famine of 1314-22 was a single most severe food crisis in the late Middle Ages. The almost biblical flooding of 1314-17 led to a harsh subsistence crisis that deeply transformed European population, society, economy and ecology. Historians have long been aware of this in relation to the crop failures that occurred in these years, but their studies have tended to stand outside the analytical, and certainly statistical, frameworks that historians have created for assessing the impact of the catastrophe. The present working paper proposes the preliminary re-assessment of three important aspects of the Great Famine, from an English and Welsh perspective. The reason for concentrating on England and Wales is the fact that this region is abundant in a large corpus of statistical data, which either does not survive or does not exist for other regions in Northern Europe.
As open access available:
“Sickness, Hunger, War, and Religion: Multidisciplinary Perspectives.”
Rachel Carson Center Perspectives 2012, Issue 3
Edited by Michaela Harbeck, Kristin von Heyking, and Heiner Schwarzberg
A peste, fame et bello libera nos, Domine!” Disease, hunger, war, and religion have shaped human existence over many centuries. This volume presents exciting syntheses between research in the fields of archaeology, anthropology, and history; moving from prehistory to the medieval period, six chapters look at humanity’s struggles with subsistence, religious belief, ill-health, death, and warfare in a variety of global landscapes, and show how, by sharing expertise and combining methodological approaches, we can advance our understanding of our common past.
available as pdf (pdf, 7.5 MB) (or printer-friendly version, pdf, 6.6 MB)
At http://www.zotero.org/groups/87194 we collect relevant publications.
You are invited to join this group, to contribute and to use this hopefully growing database.
These are two very useful papers that deal with the impact of the early 14th century cattle plagues on English manors:
Newfield, T. 2009. A cattle panzootic in early fourteenth-century Europe. Agricultural History Review 57, 155-190.
Slavin, P. in press. The great bovine pestilence and its economic and environmental consequences in England and Wales, 1318-1350. Economic History Review DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-0289.2011.00625.x