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Subject:  Re: Contagion Date:  9/11/2012  4:56 PM
Author:  1poorguy Number:  67 of 151


With all due respect, the Plague was most certainly NOT limited to Europe. It is thought to have started in China or central Asia, and mostly from trade (ships?) found its way to Europe. Documentation is not as good from those areas, but at least some regions appear to have suffered 90% mortality.

Many scholars believe that the Black Death began in north-western China, while others cite south-western China or the steppes of Central Asia. We do know that in 1331, an outbreak erupted in the Yuan Empire; it may have hastened the end of Mongol rule over China. In 1334, this disease killed 5 million people in Hebei Province - about 90% of the population.

Per that article it appears nearly 50% of the population of China disappeared, likely due to the Plague. A loss of 55M people.

I believe trade also brought it to parts of Africa (particularly north Africa).

About the only place that was not affected was the New World (because Europe/Asia had not yet discovered it).

Obviously I haven't modeled a modern epidemic, as I suspect you have. But I am surprised that projections are so low for a highly transmissible pathogen given population densities, and the amount and speed of travel. I won't dispute such projections, but am curious what would stop a rapid spread in such a situation (barring development of a general vaccine, or something similar).

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