Plague in England

national epidemics 1348-1665


List compiled by Brian Williams in 1996 as part of ‘The Cycles of Plague’,
dissertation for a BA (Hons) degree at the University of Hull, England.



14th century

1348-1349 The Black Death.

1361 Pestis secunda or Pestis puerorum [3:130]; [4:23].

1369 Pestis tertia [4:23].

1375 Pestis quarta [4:23, 135-136].

1379-1383 Pestis quinta; ‘In 1379 there was a great plague in the Northern parts...under the year 1382, a very pestilential fever in many parts of the country’ [1:218]; London was afflicted in 1382, with Kent and others parts in 1383 [219].

1390-1391 A prolonged outbreak through 1390-1391 ‘described not without some detail’ [1:219]; [3:131]; ‘“a grete pestilence in England”’ [4:137].

1399-1400 [3:131].




15th century

1405-1406 [3:131]; [4:141].

1411-1412 ‘another national epidemic’ [3:131].

1420-1423 Norfolk, ‘but the Rolls of Parliament bear undoubted witness to a very severe prevalence of plague in the North about the same time’ [1:221]; 1420 and 1423 [2:36]; 1423 [3:131].

1426-1429 [2:36]; ‘a London visitation in 1426, and a national epidemic in 1428-29’ [3:132].

1433-1435 ‘Here then, early in 1434, is the first distinct suggestion in the period 1430-1480 of something more that a local or regional epidemic’ [2:37]; ‘a national epidemic that lasted from 1433 to 1435’ [3:132]; 1433 or 1434 [4:143].

1438-1439 ‘a national epidemic’ [3:132]; [4:144].

1447-1454 ‘Parts of England experienced plague epidemics in 11 out of the 18 years between 1442 and 1459’ [3:132]; 1447-1454 [4:145].

463-1465 [1:229]; ‘From 1463 to 1465, another severe epidemic hit the entire kingdom’ [3:132]; 1463 ‘“a greate pestilence...all England over’” [4:146].

1467 ‘In 1467 another epidemic swept through parts of England, and was possibly national in scope. If the Rolls of Parliament are to be believed, it was unquestionably an epidemic of plague’ [2:42]; [3:132].

1471 ‘evidence indicates that this epidemic was one of plague’ [2:44]; ‘in 1471, all of England was overwhelmed’ [3:132].

1479-1480 ‘This year [1479] saw great mortality and death in London and many other parts of this realm’ [1:231-232], ‘the great epidemic of 1479 in London and elsewhere’ [286]; ‘The most virulent epidemic of the fifteenth century was the plague of 1479-1480’ [2:14]; ‘From autumn to autumn, a combined epidemic of bubonic and pneumonic plague devastated all of Britain’ [3:133].

1499-1500 ‘the great epidemic of 1499-1500, in London and apparently also in the country’ [1:287]; [2:14]; [3:156]; the sixteenth century opened with ‘a great pestilence throughout all England’ [4:159].




16th century

1509-1510 [2:156]; 1509, a ‘great plague’ that afflicted various parts of England [4:160].

1516-1517 [3:156].

1523 [4:163].

1527-1530 [3:156].

1532 ‘There is supporting evidence that the disease was widespread’ [4:168].

1544-1546 1544 ‘several scattered, localized outbreaks of plague in England’ [4:178], 1545 north-east [180], south coast [181], 1546 westwards [182].

1563 ‘probably the worst of the great metropolitan epidemics’ [4:176], ‘and then extended as a major national outbreak of it’ [189].

1585-1587 ‘bubonic plague was busy in numerous places in England in the years from 1585 to 1587 inclusively’ [4:237].

1593 the ‘great metropolitan and national epidemic of 1593’ [4:176, 222].




17th century

1603-1604 [4:264].

1609-1610 ‘The next two years, 1609 and 1610, witnessed several severe outbreaks of bubonic plague in English towns’ [4:299].

1625 ‘the great outburst of 1625’ [4:313].

1637 ‘widely distributed in 1637 and a number of places experienced more or less severe visitations of it’ [4:389].

1645 ‘The year 1645 was one of severe plague in several towns at the same time’ [1:557].

1665 The Great Plague, affecting London in the main.

It is sometimes stated that plague disappeared from England following the Great Plague. In fact, localised incidents were recorded after this event.




references

[1] CREIGHTON, Charles (1965)
A History of Epidemics in Britain Vol I:
From AD 664 to the Great Plague
(2nd ed)
with additional material by DEC Eversley, EA Underwood, and L Ovenall
London: Frank Cass.
(This work was originally published in 1891.)

[2] GOTTFRIED, Robert S (1978)
Epidemic Disease in Fifteenth century England:
The Medical Response and the Demographic Consequences

Leicester: Leicester University Press.

[3] GOTTFRIED, Robert S (1983)
The Black Death:
Natural and Human Disaster in Medieval Europe

London: Robert Hale.

[4] SHREWSBURY, John Findlay Drew (1970)
A History of Bubonic Plague in the British Isles
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


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