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One of the deadliest pandemics in world history, the Black Plague (or the Black Death) is thought to have started in Asiaas early as the 1320s. It is documented as having reached the Crimea by 1346 and devastated Europe shortly thereafter, with the largest number of deaths reported between 1348-1350. The plague continued to reoccur every generation until the 1700s. During Shakespeare's time, it reappeared in 1603, killing 38,000 in London alone. The Black Death was probably a form of bubonic plague, probably caused by fleas carried on rats transported from ships. The plague is thought to have killed nearly one-half (estimates range from 30%-60%) of Europe's population. Between 75-100 million people died from the dreaded disease. It took 150 years for Europe's population to replace the number of dead.
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