Re-enactments, modern analysis and visits to medieval cities track the course of the disease that changed history.
Re-enactments bring the fear and desperation of the era to life.
Learn of the drastic steps taken to stop its spread.
See haunting reminders of the scourge that devastated Europe.
It began like the common cold. Then came fever, baseball-sized black swellings on the neck, and coughing up blood. Few infected lived more than two days. In the three years since it first struck in 1437, almost half of Europe's population died within three years.
THE PLAGUE visits the rat-infested holds of the ships that brought death and disease, witness the terror that swept through towns, and walks with religious flagellants. Follow a princess as she travels into the center of the plague, a doctor who struggles to understand what is happening, and a Jewish merchant caught up in violent attacks. Hear the actual words of the victims, taken from diaries and journals. From the Pope's palace to the humble huts of medieval peasants, watch as people live and die in the unforgiving grip of fear and death, and wonder how we would act if such a terrible event happened today.