Re: No outbreaks of “Black Death” anytime soon (PM Mailbag Friday, 08 January 2016) – Glad to see Robert has taken up the mantel of “Nostradamus” and can now predict the future. The 1st Pandemic actually started in China in 1330 & reached Europe by 1348. It was spread by fleas from infected rats. These rodents would have a festering sore & when attempting to cure it they left saliva on the wound which an unaffected flea came in contact with and thus became a carrier.
Doctors in this age had scant knowledge and had no way to treat the affected. We have our antibiotics but even now some diseases are becoming resistant to them. They managed to harness the SARS epidemic in 2003 but as this is a viral disease which is quite different from plague.
There have been 6 major outbreaks up the 20th century, none on the scale of the earlier ones. As records were scanty it is estimated that 75-100 million died. Although there have been outbreaks in China, Vietnam & India that have caused over 10 million deaths.
So Robert I bow down to your greater knowledge as Nostradamus’s protégé. And admit I am envious of you (Envy is proof of one’s own ignorance. How I wish I also was clairvoyant).