Archiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2003-11 > 1069428828

Subject: Re: Black Death was Re: [DNA] END of Thread for me re Viking ancestry
Date: Fri, 21 Nov 2003 10:33:48 EST

In a message dated 21/11/03 12:12:33 GMT Standard Time,

> Travel to where though? It was widespread. Like any disease
Initially it was at the ports since that is how it entered the country. It
had also reached other parts of Northern Europe in the same way but earlier, so
there was knowledge of it before it struck here.
> isolation was more the way to fight it.

Isolation was used a lot, and those who had estates in unaffected areas
tended to go to them, ahead of the spread and then ensure that the place was
isolated. Isolation worked both ways.

However, the more > populated urban areas were exposed more and thus
> suffered
> more.
Which is why those who could moved out to their estates in the country, which
was, by definition the landed gentry.

> As you note the labourers who clustered in the villages
> were more at risk. However, so too would also have been the
> tradesmen who in many cases were drawn from younger sons
> of the ruling class.
Not in 1350 they weren't. Being "in trade" was about as nasty an insult as
you could use about somebody in "society" until about 200 years ago.

> Regardless, it seems clear that the Black Death, which
> affected 1/3 of the population was not evenly distributed.
> How can one, not knowing which groups of people may
> have been more affected, project any sort of analysis
> on more ancient peoples in Europe. Surely today's
> statistics are more a reflection of the survivors of the
> Black Death versus the times prior to it; a sort of global
> founder effect
There is evidence that those who survived the Black Death may have had a gene
which gave them some immunity. About 1/3 died, but more than that were
affected. It did not kill 100% of those who got it.The offspring of those who
avoided it were presumably more likely to succumb next time than those born of
people who had lived through it.
By the way, I am not trying to project anything. Only suggesting that the
idea that it hit the ruling classes harder that others is unlikely to be true. If
anything, it is likely to have hit them less hard.
John Clare

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