What were the negative aspects of life during the Middle Ages?

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There were lots of negative aspects to life in the Middle Ages. For one thing, life was incredibly hard for most people. Life expectancy in those days was much lower than it is today; Most men and women were lucky if they lived beyond the age of thirty-five. Also, there was no government system of welfare at that time and no safety net to keep people from absolute destitution. The Church provided charity through its various institutions, but inevitably it was never enough to prevent many of society's poorest people from starving to death, especially in the wake of a bad harvest. If you were poor and sick, you had to beg in order to survive. If you couldn't make enough money from begging, then you died.

Medical knowledge in the Middle Ages was fairly primitive, to say the least. Without an understanding of germs, people of all walks of life lived in the midst of unimaginable filth. People didn't have toilets so they'd simply throw their waste products out into the street, creating an enormous stench as well as a huge breeding-ground for germs and disease. If anyone caught, say, typhus from the gigantic mounds of doo-doo piled high in the streets, then they were pretty much doomed. With such limited medical knowledge, it was impossible to treat even the most simple of illnesses. In the Middle Ages, it was quite common for people to die from catching cold. In the absence of effective medical treatments for a whole variety of ailments, people resorted to folk remedies and prayers to ward off disease.

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