One of the deadliest pandemics in human history, the Black Death is credited for devastating the medieval population and causing a substantial change in economy and society in all areas of the world.
The initial outbreak of plague, in the Chinese province of Hubei in 1334, claimed up to ninety percent of the population, and succeeding outbreaks caused the death of two-thirds of China’s population.
In Europe, it is estimated that between one-quarter and two-thirds of the European population died from the outbreak between 1348 and 1350.
The sudden shortage of cheap labor provided an incentive for landlords to compete for peasants with wages and freedoms, thus sowing the seeds for capitalism.
The resulting upheaval also paved the way for the “Renaissance”.
It took almost 150 years for Europe’s population to recover from this devastating plague.