black plague

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Related to black plague: Black Death, bubonic plague

black death

term applied to the worldwide epidemic of the 14th-century, of which some 60 million people are thought to have died; descriptions indicate that it was bubonic, septocemic, and pneumonic plague.

black plague

black plague

The black plague arrived with the Tartars in Sicily in late 1347, and reached Paris by the following winter; within 3–4 years of its debut, it had killed 25 million, 30% to 60% of Europe’s population at the time.  Yersinia pestis infection of mammalian hosts is attributed to suppression and avoidance of the host’s immune defences—e.g., phagocytosis and antibody production.


(plag) [L., plaga, blow, injury]
1. Any widespread contagious disease associated with a high death rate.
2. An often fatal disease caused by Yersinia pestis. The natural hosts are ground squirrels, wild rodents, and rats; the vector is the rat flea. In the U.S., hunters, trappers, and campers may encounter infected mammals. Outbreaks are also associated with crowded living conditions and poor sanitation. Although plague was responsible for millions of deaths during the Middle Ages, improvements in sanitation, medical care, and the availability of antibiotics now prevent widespread epidemics. Plague is characterized by high fever, restlessness, confusion, prostration, delirium, shock, and coma. Streptomycin (the antibiotic of choice), gentamicin, tetracyclines, doxycycline, fluoroquinolones, and chloramphenicol are effective in treating plague. In the U.S., about 15 cases of plague are reported annually, primarily in western and southwestern regions. If treated promptly, plague is rarely fatal; however, in the U.S. about 1 in 7 people infected dies, usually because of delayed diagnosis or treatment.

ambulatory plague

A mild form of bubonic plague.

black plague


bubonic plague


hemorrhagic plague

A severe form of bubonic plague in which there is hemorrhage into the skin.

murine plague

A plague infecting rats.

pneumonic plague

A highly virulent form of plague spread from person to person by respiratory secretions. It occurs as a sequela of bubonic plague or as a primary infection.

septicemic plague

Severe bubonic plague; septicemia may precede the formation of buboes.

sylvatic plague

Bubonic plague that is endemic among wild rodents and their fleas.

white plague

An historical term for tuberculosis.
References in periodicals archive ?
Does this "Black" past of Verney's come back in the body of the black plague victim, who is also the symptom of social ills?
the village is burning the goddamn black plague they mean black people
Don't know if it was flu, tonsillitis or the black plague, but what I do know is Sunday is the worst day in the world to have anything wrong with you.
Will a plague of epic proportions sweep through the world like the Black Plague did?
He had lived with his family, as all the others did, a life free from care and sorrow in which death was something for other people, not for him, till suddenly one morning when he entered this room, he saw this black plague in the middle of his house.
Others came to see that nothing went awry, that the shallow-minded and small-hearted kept their meanness at bay, and that the entire event be characterized by that abiding gentleness of spirit to which they themselves had arrived by the simple determination not to let anything - anything at all: not failed crops, not rednecks, lost jobs, sick children, rotten potatoes, broken pipes, bug-ridden flour, third-class coal, educated social workers, thieving insurance men, garlic-ridden hunkies, corrupt Catholics, racist Protestants, cowardly Jews, slaveholding Moslems, jack-leg nigger preachers, squeamish Chinamen, cholera, dropsy or the Black Plague, let alone a strange woman - keep them from their God.
Van der Velde's fictionalized tale begins with Salomon as a young boy who immediately captures the sympathies of the reader as he is sent into exile by his father to save him from the marauding Christians, who are scapegoating the Jews for the evil of the Black Plague.
If this were the Black Plague and people were going to die in seven days, I'd say okay, but why not sit tight for two or three years?
In the 14th century, the black plague stormed through Europe, killing at least one-quarter of its inhabitants.
The whole bed-bug issue has spun out of control and has become as frightening to some as the black plague or even leprosy.
Like the black plague in medieval Europe, terrorism is stalking the modern world, and eradicating it has become a global imperative.
The spoilers have hinted that the opening scene of the premiere episode will show Mary worried about Francis, as he has not returned to the castle and the black plague has killed hundreds in the villages outside the castle.