History Extra podcast


The Black Death | 4. medieval medical thinking

Ep. 1347

How do you fight a disease, when you don’t know what causes it? In this episode, Ellie Cawthorne speaks to Elma Brenner about medieval medical thinking and how it informed responses to the Black Death, from ideas about how bad air and misaligned planets could make you sick, to the rituals and remedies used to treat plague victims and the state of 14th-century hospital care.

The primary sources quoted in this series are mainly taken from:

The Black Death, translated and edited by Rosemary Horrox (1994)

The Black Death, The Great Mortality of 1348-1350: A Brief History with Documents, John Arberth (2005)

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