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Black death in france

The meaning of «black death in france»

The Black Death was present in France between 1347 and 1352.[1] The bubonic plague pandemic known as the Black Death reached France by ship from Italy to Marseille in November 1347, spread through first Southern France and then Northern France and, due to the size of the Kingdom, lasted there several years, as some parts were not affected until the plage was over in others. The Kingdom of France had the largest population of Europe at the time, and the Black Death was a major catastrophe. The Black Death in France was described by eyewitnesses such as Louis Heyligen, Jean de Venette and Gilles Li Muisis. The Black Death migrated from Southern France to Spain, from Eastern France to the Holy Roman Empire, and to England by ship from Gascony.[1]

At the time, Pope Clement VI resided in Avignon in present-day France during the Western Schism, and issued his condemnations of the Jewish persecutions during the Black Death as well as the flagellants.[1] During the Black Death in France, King Philip VI of France ordered the University of Paris to compose the pioneering work Compendium de epidemia due to the pandemic.[2]

At this point in time, France and England had entered the Hundred Years' War. In 1346, France had lost the Battle of Crécy. Pope Clement VI lived in Avignon in present-day France during the Western Schism.[3] The Kingdom of France had a population of between 16 and 20 million people, the largest population of Europe. Similarly to Italy, it was relatively urbanised.[1]

Since the outbreak of the Black Death at the Crimea, it had reached Sicily by an Italian ship from the Crimea. After having spread across the Italian states, the plague reached France by a plague ship in November 1347.[1]

The plague in Southern France are described by Louis Heyligen in Avignon. According to Louis Heyligen the Black Death reached France in December 1347, when a Genovese plague ship from the East was forced to leave its home port of Genova shortly after its return and arrived in Marseilles instead.[1] The ship spread the plague in Marseilles, was forced to leave the city and continued on its way along the coast of Southern France, spreading the plague along its way, as well as from Marseilles West toward Toulouse, and north toward Avignon.[1] In May 1348, a second wave came by land from Genova.[1]

In Avignon, the pope arranged religious processions to dampen the wrath of God, as the plague was interpreted by the church as the punishment of God for the sins of humanity.[1] The pope was advised by his physician Gui de Chauliac to hide from the plague in Étoile-sur-Rône, where he survived the outbreak.[1]

The Black Death in Southwest France is not as documented as it is in Avignon. It is noted to have been in Carcassonne in January 1348 and in Toulouse in April. It is confirmed in Bordeaux in June 1348, but it is likely to have been present there already in March. It is noted that it was a ship of pilgrims from Bordeaux who brought the plague to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. [1]

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