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The Black Death: A Personal History
by John Hatcher
Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0306815710, Hardcover)
In this fresh approach to the history of the Black Death, world-renowned scholar John Hatcher re-creates everyday life in a mid-fourteenth century rural English village. By focusing on the experiences of ordinary villagers as they lived-and died-during the Black Death (1345-50), Hatcher vividly places the reader directly inside those tumultuous times and describes in fascinating detail the day-to-day existence of people struggling with the tragic effects of the plague. Dramatic scenes portray how contemporaries must have felt and thought about these momentous events: what they knew and didn’t know about the horrors of the disease, what they believed about death and God’s vengeance, and how they tried to make sense of it all despite frantic rumors, frightening tales, and fearful sermons.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:11 -0400)
"With alarming speed, the horrific plague that swept across the known world in the mid-fourteenth century (from 1345 to 1350) took the lives of an estimated 40 percent of the population. The Black Death was one of Europe's greatest natural disasters, a watershed event that changed forever the social and economic history of Western civilization. Yet sources tell us very little about the ordinary person's experience of the plague ... until now." "In this fresh historical approach to the study of the Black Death, author and scholar John Hatcher re-creates everyday life in the rural English parish of Walsham. Through a series of vivid, meticulously researched scenes, he shows how the terrible events of the times affected the villagers, how fear and hysteria spread as the epidemic drew near, and how quickly death ran its course as nearly fifty townspeople a day perished. Hatcher also portrays the clergy's desperate struggle to minister to the dying and to offer spiritual comfort to the living in a time fraught with apocalyptic overtones, and he examines how dramatically life was about to change for those who survived." "Hatcher explores this extraordinary event in intimate detail, giving it a more thorough, immediate treatment than historians have given it in the past. He reveals, for the first time, a very personal history of the Black Death."--BOOK JACKET.
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